Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Diet Update

Thank you, all, for your encouragement and advice after my first post about this. It was scary to make a big change to something as fraught as our diet, and I was scared, so your kind words helped a lot.

Don't try to act innocent, soy!
I'm pleased to report that all is going really well. I was very very worried about how Geri would do, with her feeding issues, and I'm a little ashamed now that I underestimated her so much. I was scared she would reject all the new foods and convinced she wouldn't tackle all that chewing, but I was so wrong. She's munching on meats and veggies and fruits and doing great. I have to cut it into smaller pieces for her, but that's to be expected. Sometimes, she gets a little overwhelmed because she forgets to swallow what she's been chewing and then her mouth gets too full, but event hat turns out okay. Gross as it may sound, she just spits the mass out on her plate and then takes a little bit of it back fro round two. With all the feeding issues, our family has utterly nasty table manners, but oh well. It works, and that's what matters.

In addition to all the great input I got from y'all, I also got a chance to pick the brain of one of my favorite therapists from Geri's old feeding group. She gave me some tips and idea, and also pointed out something very important for our miss Mera. Many moons ago, when Mera's dairy intolerance first cropped up, we figured out that the culprit is not lactose, but dairy protein. What I didn't know is that soy protein is almost identical to dairy protein, so if someone is intolerant of dairy protein they will find no relief in switching to soy! Well, crap... that takes that soy yogurt off the menu. Just as well, it was runny and Mera wasn't impressed. But it leaves me with a conundrum... how to replace yogurt? And should I even bother? I could use almond milk yogurt, but it tastes weird and has a bizarre consistency. I could use sheep's milk yogurt, but it's $3 per cup! I could use coconut, but it's super thin. I could thicken it with protein powder, but that usually has whey in it and that's a no-go. I'm thinking I might just let it go.

The therapist also recommended I not take Geri down to 100% carb free. She pointed out that carbs are essential for processing protein in the body, and that they provide complex sugars that give longer lasting energy than fruits. She wants to see Geri on some amount of whole-grain carbs. Honestly, I was never really thinking of going totally carb-free. I just wanted to reduce it a whole lot and I figured shooting for none but knowing I can't control everything would land us at an actual reduction closer to 70%. I aim high, knowing I'll never make it but figuring that will get me closer to where I need to be. Does that make me a pessimist? At any rate, I bought some quinoa and I'm working more barley into the mix.

Another thing that the feeding therapist suggested was adding a probiotic to both girls' diets. I can't believe I didn't think of that, since I used a probiotic when Mera's dairy thing first popped up. She said it's a god idea when making a diet change to add a probiotic to keep everything working properly and your immune system functioning during the change. I found a dairy-free kids probiotic powder at King Soopers, so I'm working it in for both girls.

So, what about results?? Without going into too much disgusting detail, it's working. Geri's moving again, and since I dropped the soy I have seen some improvement in Mera. They both seem to be moving their bowels more regularly and with less difficulty. TMI, I know, but at least I'm not posting pics or something. Stroll on over to STFU, Parents and this won't look so bad.

1 comment:

  1. The non-dairy yogurts are all pretty thin, but my favorite in flavor is the coconut milk yogurt. I sometimes thicken soy/coconut yogurt with mashed bananas, avocados, baby barley cereal flakes, or crumbled up shortbread cookies though Emilia will eat it as is without any complaints, too.