Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Dairy Free

Remember that cough I told you about months ago?

Well...it's still around.

Cassandra responded great to the 2 meds (Singulair and Nasonex) at first. Then we tried weaning her off and it's been a nightmare since. We cut out the Singulair and the coughing started right back up. So we put her back on it....but she didn't respond to it.  Back to the allergist we went (in April) and she was kept on those 2 and they also added in 2 inhalers for her as well. One to do twice daily and once as a "rescue" inhaler for her coughing "fits".  

She responded well to those so we were told to keep her on them for a month. We stopped in mid-May and she was ok for about 2-3 weeks.  Then the cough returned. We went to the allergist again in June and he told us to keep her as she is for about 6mos. Basically 3-4 meds a day for the poor girl.

I've also been talking to my chiropractor a lot about it (she has a degree in nutrition as well) and she strongly feels that the inflammation causing her asthma is tied to food and an unbalanced "gut". She suggested trying going dairy free for awhile because I guess dairy is a big trigger for inflammation in a lot of kids. That along with adding in some probiotics and Vitamin D should help clean her gut out.

Well...about 2 weeks ago or so we had another really bad night of her coughing so we decided to bite the bullet and give it a shot. So on Friday 7/11 we started her on a dairy free diet. 

I'm not going to lie....it's hard.

Some days have been easy and some have been challenging. I've had moments in Wegman's where I want to cry because everything I normally buy has dairy in it. I've also had moments in Wegman's where I'm thanking God that something doesn't have dairy in it.

The hardest part has been milk (to drink) and yogurt and mac-n-cheese. Thankfully most of the other stuff we feed the kids doesn't have dairy in it. I've tried a few different yogurts for her and she's not really thrilled with them. I found one mac-n-cheese that she ate-if she will again who knows! But the drinking milk is very hard. I tried almond milk first since it seems a lot of people like it. Nope-she knew right away it was different and drank a few gulps and that was it. Every meal I gave it to her and every meal it sat there. This week I bought rice milk and she's not thrilled with that either. She'll take 1-2 sips at a meal and that's it. And it's only because I sort of make her drink a sip. She doesn't do it on her own. I might try coconut milk this weekend and see how that goes. Beyond that, I'm stumped.

We haven't had the challenge of going out to dinner yet or going to a party, etc. I know those will be hard. I found a bakery that makes dairy free cupcakes so I think I'm going to stock up on those for when we have a party to go to. At least she won't feel left out!

And it's really hard telling her she can't have something, especially if she sees someone else eating it. We always will say "no" and she'll ask why. Our answer? "It has milk in it." Lately she'll just say "ok."  At first, many tears were shed when we said no, but I think she's starting to catch on. And it's funny because now Avery will ask "does that have milk in it?" before we give something to Cassandra. So she's looking out for her too.

I could see this being easier if your child had a life threatening allergy to something and you had to cut it out of their diet. But doing it by choice is hard for some reason. And like Gabe said, I never imagined we'd be one of those families that has to read every label before feeding it to our child. I'm not sure how long we'll do this for. Ideally 3-6months, but really we're just taking it one day at a time.

If any of you have any suggestions for us, we'll take all of the help we can get!

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