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My daughter has been dealing with some painful gas issues and when I tell people this they make sure to inundate me with a list of things I should not be eating (I'm EBF). My crazy SIL even thinks that me drinking carbonated drinks will give her gas ummmm why because the bubbles travel through my milk? DUH. But anyways, aside from the rare instances where babies might have an allergy to something, is there any truth to the idea that what we eat can upset our babies' systems? I've been told to not eat chickpeas, cabbage, broccoli, milk, tomatoes and the list goes on and on. Please help me sort through this. If there is any truth to it then I'll experiment with my diet because I feel so sad watching my baby in pain But I don't want to totally upend my life if it's just BS.
- 03/28/10 09/'10 06/'11, D&C July 20 Apr/'12
It is true but I also believe this early on, their little bodies are just trying to figure everything out. I'm sure there are foods that I eat that make Clara a little more gassy but I personally don't avoid anything while nursing.
It seems to me that it's more likely that some of have more gassy babies [raises hand] and some less. But to some extent all babies are going to have trouble since pretty much all of their innards are still developing, and in the intestines in a very complex microbial and enzymatic world. The theory on specific foods being more irritating also seemed to me to conflict with the idea that their are cultures where the food base historically consists of those things we're supposed to avoid. (Say spicy foods or garlic.)
That being said, I am on a dairy-free diet now but that was for more than just gas -- I couldn't really deny the blood in her stool, which could signal a dairy intolerance (though not necessarily allergy). She's still gassy (and in this family, there was little chance she wouldn't be) but the blood in the stool has not reappeared, so I will keep up the dairy free for a while before re-introducing.
Edit: I wanted to add that as a FTM, I clearly don't have any extensive experience with this. I just have a very gassy baby and that is pretty much perpetual, no matter what I'm eating or not eating.
Last edited by mistletoe; March 16th, 2013 at 08:11 AM.
All I can say is what my step-sister experienced when he breastfed her daughter... whenever she ate anything spicy or ate broccoli baby was up all night with horrible gas and GERD. If she avoided spicy/acidic/gassy foods, her daughter had less of a problem. Take from that what you will but that tells me that yes, whatever you eat will affect the baby.
It is a really big huge sacrifice having a super "clean" diet, but it really is worth it. DD1 used to projective vomit from her mouth and nose all at the same time and cry and gasp for air and it was just absolutely horrible. For me, it was definitely worth the sacrifice. It made for a much happier and comfortable baby. She did have to eventually go on Zantac, but even on the zantac if I was bad with my diet I could tell.
I know with DD2 the pediatrician told me to just cut back and see if it makes a difference, but it's not. I need to cut everything out this time around, too.
Maybe just avoiding the gassy veggies will help your baby or just the dairy.
Thanks guys. Other than dairy what are some of the foods that might be culprits?
We were up until 3am with Sofia last night. I was so sad watching her be in pain and want to avoid it so I'll try anything..
- 03/28/10 09/'10 06/'11, D&C July 20 Apr/'12
My baby is the same. Have your tried the gripe water? It helps. The best thing to do is think back 4-6 hours for what you ate and start there. Yes, dairy is a huge one but it could also be gluten, soy, eggs, or anything. I am off gluten and dairy right now so I know how hard it is.
I had a similar issue recently with Creighton, he all of a sudden went from nice calm baby to being in horrible pain with gas and trying to poop. I cut out all of the oatmeal and milk that i was taking in and while he is still experiencing the pain and gas 2 weeks later it is getting better and is no where near as bad, so I am going to continue to be oat and milk free for a while it appears. I will try reintroducing each one separately at some time in the future and see if it still causes him issues
If I eat brocolli, my LO acts like she is dying the entire next day. This happened once, and everyone said no way could it be the brocolli. I waited a month, and she NEVER fussed, had gas, or painfully squirmed. I had brocolli. The next day, she cried and squirmed with gas all day! I waited a few weeks, tried it again, and it happened a third time. No one can tell me it wasn't the brocolli! I will be avoiding brocolli for sure, until I am done BFing.
Yes, the foods you eat can definitely impact baby - very true in my experience. I have been dairy-free for about 4 weeks now, and it has helped some of my son's issues. Not all, but some. If you go the route of trying to cut out dairy, make sure you are reading labels and asking how restaurant foods are prepared. It's not the lactose that's a problem, it's the milk protein, so you may (depending on the severity of the issues) need to avoid not just the obvious dairy (milk, cheese, butter, yogurt, etc.), but also anything that contains milk proteins (whey and caesin). They're ingredients in more things than you'd expect.