Image: PANGAIAN WILDS by Daniel Mirante. Thanks Daniel!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Food Sensitivity/Allergy?

Having Aya out of the womb has brought a new host of challenges I was not expecting. I know, how could I, being that I am a first time mother. But still, I thought it would be somewhat smooth sailing, just like the pregnancy was. How naive.

Aya was somewhat posterior during labor and was having a very difficult time fitting through the birth canal. Hence, the very intense and painful 20 hour labor I endured. His head was compressed for a long time in a very tight space. Miraculously his heartbeat stayed strong the whole time. He's a trouper, my little man. Finally at the end he turned and I was able to push him out. Within the first days he started having a stuffy nose. We attributed it to the compression and have been doing cranial sacral work on him, reflexology, sinus massage, and saline flushes. Seems to be helping somewhat, but the problem remains. He is also having a difficult time burping and has had many bouts of hiccups, and this second week has had a little issue with constipation (and so have I). I do have to say though, he hasn't had an issue sleeping or being real colicky, only a couple nights ... for the most part he's sleeping well and seems generally in good health and spirits. His umbilical cord healed in one week for example!

Naturally I started thinking about my diet to help ease the congestion and to get his (and my) bowels moving. While i don't eat many processed foods, I had some processed vegan soy cheese a few times since his birth and a tofurky sandwich. I immediately cut those items out. As for other soy, I eat tempeh, tamari, miso and bragg's liquid aminos but I didn't think that those were an issue ... although now I am not sure. Other things I read could be irritating is wheat (haven't had very much), citrus and fruits like strawberries (I had quite a few strawberry banana smoothies), nuts (have had cashews, peanuts, pecans and walnuts) and dairy (obviously that's not an issue).

A new element to this mystery that just developed in the last couple days ... as if this isn't enough ... a pimply rash has developed on his face. The first week he had a couple around his nose, which i read was normal, but in the last couple days it has spread to his cheeks, under his eyes, and a few on his chest. This has sent me into extreme worry mode. Is it a food allergy? Could it be our laundry detergent .. his face up against our clothes and sheets? We obviously use a natural detergent but it does have fragrance added. Is the stuffy nose and intestinal upset related? OR ... are the pimples simply normal and I am freaking out over nothing?? Like I said before, he doesn't seem to be bothered by the pimples, he struggles a little to release his bowls, but other than that, he's a pretty calm kid.

I have started a food diary to try to see if it's a certain food. I will eliminate the high probability foods and see what happens and will report my findings here. We also have a few leads on open-minded pediatricians that i will be making appointments with this week but if anyone has any recommendations in this area I would appreciate it. A naturopath that accepts medicaid insurance would be a blessing (and a miracle)!

If anyone has any feedback to this issue please send them to me at or post them to this blog. I am confident that I can get to the bottom of this, but I have to admit that I am a bit stressed ... which is probably typical of a new mom :)

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