I haven’t posted nearly as much on Ada and her symptoms from foods and her diet as I used to. Updates on her health, I guess, I used to do pretty regularly. There were times, actually about a year ago, where we ate a very limited diet, two proteins, a few veggies, a few types of fruit and no grains.
Now we are simply gluten, dairy, soy and non-organic corn free. Not a bad list at all, actually, once you are used to it and have good recipes by your side.
Two of her issues, though, have always failed to get better. They wax and wane but they don’t go away. She suffers from chronic constipation and has teeth that are extremely susceptible to decay.
She almost got to the point where she’d go every day when we were on our most limited diet, with no grains at all. Some weeks it is as long as 7 days, some weeks every 2. It is very hard to say what the cause it. I often feel that she is reacted to cross contamination of gluten from eating at my in-laws house (though we wipe the table down, gluten is like a hot pepper. Think of how it will still burn you even if you rinse something with water. It’s on door knobs, counter edges, plates perhaps) and at playdates and being out and about.
And then sometimes I think she is intolerant to something else. Perhaps we should again go all the way corn free.
And the sometimes I know it’s partly because she keeps it in herself. She seems to feel the urge but will run around the house for 30 minutes if need be to keep the urge from making her actually go to the bathroom. Azita did that too, and it’s not too too uncommon, but it seems to be worse when there are other signs of a food bothering her system (like keratosis pilaris, or skin bumps). And Azita stopped doing it about 3 weeks after we went gluten and dairy free. I have to constantly decide when I’m being a careful, observant detective mom and finding answers about the subtely of my child’s health or if I’m trying to control and find an answer for something I can’t control.
I could go back to a no-grain diet, I could. And it would be a small price to pay for a healthy child. But it can be hard to convince yourself to do that when you aren’t sure it would help and you are already free of some big huge allergens. Although, my advice to another mom would probably be just to do it!
The other issue– her teeth– is not simple either. She has had loads of dental work for someone who hasn’t even hit 2 and a half yet. Three root canals, two silver crowns and some drilling and filling. Her enamel is clearly very weak. Dentists seem to think we just need to clean better, but her pediatric GI at Duke recognizes that celiacs often have tooth issues.
The theory, my theory, at least, is that the enamel didn’t form properly because I ate gluten while she was in utero. Since she has been gluten free since she was 5 months old, the hope is that the adult teeth will come in stronger. What is funny is that people will say that “bad teeth” run in their families. So does gluten intolerance. Ada’s dad and granddad both struggle with their teeth.
Anyhow, through reading and talking to others, I learned that magnesium and calcium are important to bowel function, and that vitamin D is imporant to teeth health.
Then I learned that calcium, magnesium and vitamin D must be in proper proportions to each other. If calcium is out of whack, magnesium won’t be absorbed, and D is related to that too.
Ah hah! Two symptoms directly related to two or three nutrients related to each other, I thought.
Also, maternal vitamin D has an impact. One study found that women who did not have enough vitamin D while pregnant had children with more cavities. Nothing I can do about that now, but interesting nonetheless.
Now, I already had thought about the kids vitamin D before this. We don’t wear sunscreen unless we are going to be outside for a much longer time than normal or it is extremely hot. I also let the kids play outside with little clothes one– underwear or bathing suits. We are naturally meant to get vitamin D (vitamin is a misnomer, by the way, it’s a hormone) from the sun but we don’t because we don’t spend enought time outside, and when we are outside, we are fully clothed or have on sunscreen.
I thought my kid’s D levels would be good because of my actions in regards to soaking it up naturally. I personally don’t see the point in slathering them with creams with added chemicals just to need to supplement them with something else, the vitamin D. I do realize that a lot wouldn’t agree with me and would be worried about skin cancer, and I’m okay with that. We are doing loads to try to help their bodies be strong enough to fight cancers and illnesses if they ever pass our way.
So to cut to the chase, since I am way too damn wordy— I tested her D and calcium. Both fine.
That little rascal. There will be no magic keys for her, beyond living a gluten free life!! Oh how I was expecting them to both be low and once I supplemented she’d start going every day.
But hey, take that dairy council! Perfect calcium levels and not a dairy product in sight.