Told to stop breastfeeding/milk allergy

Erica - posted on 02/08/2010 ( 28 moms have responded )

6

2

0

My daughter is 13 months old, recently she had some blood tests done and the results came back that she had slightly low hemoglobin levels. She then had a series of other blood tests done which all came back normal. The doctor took some stool samples and discovered trace amounts of blood in them, attributing the blood loss to this. The doctor is treating her for a milk allergy. She told me I should cut all dairy out of my diet (which makes sense) and start to wean my daughter immediately off the breast. Recommending I give her soymilk as her main milk source now. I am feeling uneasy with this recommendation to stop breastfeeding. I am wondering if anyone has had similar experiences??? I don't want to stop breastfeeding if I don't have to and it is still good for her...

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Penny - posted on 10/15/2011

192

7

41

that doesnt sound right, my 10mnth old has a milk and egg allergy and i have been told the best thing to do is carry on breastfeeding. i havnt cut out dairy out of my diet, just reduced it. xx

Erica - posted on 02/25/2010

6

2

0

Thank you everyone very much for your supportive and informative comments. Since I posted last I have gotten a second peditrician's opinion as well as a lactation consultant's opinion, and information from a LLL leader. All of which recommended a dairy free diet for us both and to continue to breastfeed is perfectly safe and a GOOD thing! My daughter is also on iron supplements for several weeks, and going back to get her bloodwork done again within the next week or so. I am also demanding an allergy test be run to see if in fact she does have a milk allergy. Hoping everything turns out well! Thanks again for your supportive comments!

Nicole - posted on 02/12/2010

1,117

27

48

Quoting Crystal:
"Breast milk has no lactose."

I just wanted to say I am so glad that you would rather change your diet than stop breastfeeding. What a good mommy! And you gave some great advice, but I just wanted to clarify to all that breast milk actually has a very high concentration of lactose. Alot of babies (and adults for that matter) are diagnosed as lactose intolerant when actually they have an intolerance/allergy to cow's milk protein. I wonder if anyone is TRULY "lactose" intolerant. Humans were not designed to drink milk from a cow. LOL Plus, breast milk contains Lactase which helps absorb the lactose properly. Just wanted to clairfy...

Again, good for you for continuing to breastfeed and making such a sacrifice with your dairy. LOL

Nicole - posted on 02/11/2010

1,117

27

48

She is just now, at 13 months, showing signs of a problem? And she has been breastfed this entire time? Something doesn't sound right to me???? I think something else might have caused the blood and, therefore, I would get a second opinion. Although, if it really is an insensitivity to dairy, you could just cut this out. There would be no reason to wean. Has she seen an allergist or gastroenterologist? I would try to do that, as well. Good luck and Ihope this gets better soon!

Katie - posted on 02/09/2010

8

17

2

My son had a severe milk allergy (which he eventually grew out of) and he was extremely fussy and had blood in his poop from intestinal bleeding at like 2 months, I cut out ALL milk, casein, lactose,etc.. and switched to soy milk. Things got a little better but not completely, then at a year they did allergy testing and found out he was allergic to soy and wheat also! I cut those out too and switched to rice milk, and things were wonderful, I continued to bf him until 22 months, due to pregnancy, because I felt that due to the allergies that was the best thing for him. I would definately try cuting things out first before stopping breastfeeding. Good Luck!!

This conversation has been closed to further comments

28 Comments

View replies by

Ania - posted on 10/15/2011

703

25

62

So she would suddenly develop an allergy? It does not sound right to me. Even if it is lactose intolerance allergy and if you eliminate all diary rom your diet you still can breastfeed. I would get a second opinion, because this does not make much sense to me....

Myshell - posted on 10/14/2011

58

10

11

my son bf at nap times and drinks so good strawberry soy all other times. i am pretty sur bf in the morn and/or eve only would be okay, especially if you watched your milk intake 4 hrs prior to feeding (have little or no milk products)..i would check this out with or without the doc. obviously they arent really helping you if you are on here. try it and have her retested after a month if you are still worried. my son is 14 mths and refuses to drink anything but that...hope things work out for you

Niki - posted on 03/02/2010

292

3

37

dairy products are hugely different from human milk and i would be totally and completly shock to hear of a child allergic to breast milk! usually breast milk will help her to heal and deal with allergies because it supports the immune system and has such a good range of nutrient (and as her digestive system is a bit of a mess at the moment it will be difficult for her to absorb all the nutrients she needs from solid foods) . I definatly agree with you giving up dairy products though (and not giving them to her in the future) however about 80% of people allergic to dairy also cannot tollerate soy products so i would be very cautious of that, try ricemilk instead (alkthough remember its not a complete food like breast milk and she still needs a varied & healthy diet).

Nicole - posted on 02/25/2010

1,117

27

48

Good job Erica! You are doing everything I would do in your position. Continuing to breastfeed is great! ESPECIALLY if she has a cow's milk intolerance. She will get tons of benefits from your milk. Also, watch the soy. Some that are allergic to the protein in cow's milk can have a reaction to soy, too. Again, good for you for seeking more help! Way to empower yourself!

Nicole - posted on 02/12/2010

293

36

26

i have heard this from alot of women - they all said that after cutting dairy completely out of their own diet, their babies had no problem with their breast milk - but they were serious on NO dairy atall

Gretchen - posted on 02/12/2010

11

7

2

I had the same problem with my son but found out that he had a milk intolerance at 6 months. He had blood in his stool as well. My doctor recommended continuing to breast feed. He actually didn't want to me start him on soy because he said if your child has a milk allergy they can also easily develop a soy allergy. I continued to breast feed unitl we started him on regular milk .We were lucky because he out grew his milk intolerance. I say if you can keep nursing. You have to watch the dairy intake but that isn't too hard. Good luck!

Crystal - posted on 02/12/2010

23

17

0

My peds doctor told me to stop breastfeeding for a while or cut out all dairy products immediately. I was very disappointed, however after doing my own research I found that indeed some babies are allergic to lactose in dairy products. Breast milk has no lactose. I still eat dairy products but a very limited amount because I would rather change my diet then stop breastfeeding. If you are not already I would keep taking your prenatal vitamins. This gives your body, and your babies, what you might be missing from your diet anyways. That's what my ob/gyn doc has me do.

[deleted account]

Get a second opinion! A doctor that tells you to stop breastfeeding is not a good doctor. It may take a couple weeks for your milk to be completely dairy free so you might have to supplement in the meantime.

Meaghan - posted on 02/11/2010

34

13

4

you know what Nicole is right im pretty sure if she was lactose intolerant you would had problems since birth! definitely get a second opinion!

Meaghan - posted on 02/11/2010

34

13

4

you do NOT need to stop breast feeding all you need to do is eliminate dairy from your diet!!!!! i dont know why the doctor would even say that. now that you know what it is thats bothering her digestive system all you need to do is get it out of your diet and it wont be present to bother her anymore. it is unnecessary to wean her! if something in my diet upsets my son such as peppers or any gassy foods i stop eating them i exclude and its no longer present to make him gassy and uncomfortable that goes for lactose as well!

[deleted account]

I have several severe food allergies myself, and since I wanted to prevent my children from having them if at all possible, I've done a considerable amount of research on this and talked to many doctors -pediatricians, nutritionists, allergists - and what I have found is that the best thing to do is to be ridiculously strict in terms of your own diet, avoiding anything that could pose a problem, and continue to breastfeed for as long as possible. I don't know why your doctor recommended discontinuing breastmilk...unless there is more going on than a standard milk allergy, there should be absolutely no reason to need to wean her. Human milk and cow milk are very different, and soymilk is in NO WAY a substitute for breast milk...while it can be great, it is also highly processed and given the option between soy and breast, assuming you are willing to put in the work to change your own diet, breast milk wins hands down. Good luck!

Brenda - posted on 02/10/2010

19

14

2

My son is 2 1/2 and was discovered at his 12 month checkup to have a severe egg and peanut allergy, along with a wheat, milk and soy allergy. I cut all these from my diet, but kept on breastfeeding because really, what else could he eat! Within weeks, he was a completely different baby! He still breastfeeds about 3-4 times a day, and is thriving well. I would cut the milk from your diet, but keep on breastfeeding! If your baby is allergic, you should see a difference in a couple of weeks.

Shana - posted on 02/09/2010

141

16

23

We recently took our daughter to a Gastroenterologist because of the SAME thing and he told me it was FINE to breastfeed as long as I cut out ALL dairy and soy, it's the proteins in the milk that are causing it, just cut out all dairy and start reading your labels, if you see any whey, milk, milk product, or casein in the ingredients list don't eat it, I completely agree with everyone else on getting another opinion. A lot of doctors do not know a lot about breast feeding since formula is now the norm. Maybe call a lactation consultant and see what they think of the idea. They know a lot more of what passes through your milk then a regular doctor.

Martha - posted on 02/09/2010

123

1

18

If you cut out dairy then weaning doesn't seem needed. I would go for a second opinion if i were you. Also, look into other milks because if she has an allergy to milk, a lot of times the child would be sensitive to soy as well, also just look into soy milk. Theres a big of controversy about it. There are a ton of other milk alternitive options out there. Look up goat's milk, rice milk, almond milk and hemp milk. I know that Hemp milk sounds crazy, at least it did to me when i first heard it, but after looking into it, its the most NATURALLY nutritious milk. It's the only one that is NOT fortified or enriched, all the nutrients in it are natural, and it has the highest amount of nutrients. But that's something you'd have to research and figure out whats best for your family. Hope that helped!!! ♥

Jennifer - posted on 02/09/2010

178

12

18

ummm...soy is also a very common allergy. what if your daughter is also allergic to soy? what are you going to do then?

If it were me, I would eliminate all dairy from my diet. if she still showed symptoms, then I'd eliminate all bovine protein (dairy, beef, whey, cassein proteins, etc), then I'd eliminate all soy if necessary. Keep in mind it can take 3 weeks or more before it is out of your system so when you do an eliminatin diet you need to be patient.

never in a million years would I wean to formula if I suspected allergy in my kids. frankly, this doc seems really quick to blame breastfeeding.

Rebecca - posted on 02/09/2010

595

37

74

Amber, that is the reason the hemoglobin is low, the blood in the stool. Bleeding in the intestines is a sign of milk allergy/sensitivity, not all babies are fussy or have the green frothy stools. Green frothy stools, gassyness and fussiness ect can also be signs of a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance or "too much too fast", alot of Drs can accidentally diagnose this as reflux or milk sensitivity when its just a matter of regulating your milk supply. But an iron supplement will easily increase the babys hemoglobin levels and is the safest way to do so.

Meg - posted on 02/09/2010

3

8

0

my 2 cents is to get a second opinion. it seems odd to me to wean and switch to soymilk.

Amber - posted on 02/09/2010

23

18

1

I would get a 2nd opinion. If she truly has a milk allergy you can alter your diet and still give her breast milk...which would be the best source of nutrients for her. Also if she has been fine for the past 13 months I would think it to be something else because a milk allergy would have shown up months ago

[deleted account]

I might be stupid to resond again so soon but I just wanted to say that it could be the blood in the stool causing the decreased hemoglobin and that the American Academy of Pedriactris doesn't recomend to switch your baby to Soy milk just eliminate dairy!

[deleted account]

Just one question how has baby done up until now? Have they been extreemly fussy and unconsoleable for the past 13 months? Because if he/she were allergic to milk that would be the case as well as increased gassisness and green frothy stools....decreased hemoglobin is NOT normally caused by milk allergy! More likely low iron levels as Rebecca said.



I read up on milk allergies and babies and found a site that states you shouldn't quit BFing just cut out milk and dairy products. They give the reasons behind why and what you can do for your baby and you.



http://www.thefussybabysite.com/causes/m...



The whole web site is great for people who have babies with milk allergies/sensitivity( mine just has sensitivity) and the experts that back the info are Dr.'s who have tons of research on the subject. Hope this helps... let us know how things are going!

[deleted account]

I would be inclined to get a second opinion, as well as talk with a lactation consultant. If you little girl has a dairy allergy, it makes sense to cut all dairy from your diet, but I don't understand the doctor's advice to wean her off the breast. Once you cut dairy from your diet, she should be fine on your breastmilk - it's not as if you're a cow!

Rebecca - posted on 02/08/2010

595

37

74

A friend of mine is on a Vegan diet right now because of the severe milk allergy that her daughter has (her daughter is 7 months), when ever she even gets trace amounts of dairy in her diet her daughter will have black stools (from bleeding). She cut out ALL dairy from her diet (all whey powders ect as well as milk) and her daughter is perfectly fine now and she is still EBF her! So I would look into cutting all dairy from your diet, giving her an iron supplement (this will increased her hemoglobin) and get a second opinion from another Dr as I know there is no reason at all to wean her.

Morgan - posted on 02/08/2010

68

12

3

I would get a second opinion on it, my daughter doesn't have a milk allergy but her stomach is sensitive to dairy and when I cut it out of my diet (for the most part) she has gotten a lot better. I would definitely see what another pedi felt about it becuase you might not have too!

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms