We finally got to see Dr. Wood last week at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Our baby tested negative for a milk allergy, and I have slowly been reintroducing dairy into my diet while nursing her. So far I have seen no negative reactions. The test is only 50%-60% accurate, though, as she is only 5 months old. I will introduce solids at a slow pace and watch her closely to make sure that she’s okay. The good news is that I was told that food allergies are much more common in boys, so the likelihood of her following in her brother’s footsteps is much smaller.
Both of my boys who get chronic ear infections tested negative to a dairy allergy as well. That said, I was told that they could still have an intolerance to milk, thus creating the environment for ear infections. (As far as I know, milk products can cause more mucus in your system which can block the eustachian tubes from draining. They have had NO infections or ruptures since removing all dairy from their diet.) Dr. Wood suggested that I can try to slowly reintroduce dairy (like casein, whey, or in baked goods) and see what happens. If they show no reactions, then perhaps I can be less strict with their dairy avoidance, though they will most likely not be able to have straight cheese or cow’s milk, at least not at this time.
My oldest son, who has been highly allergic/anaphylactic to milk products, got blood work done to test the severity of his milk allergy. We are currently awaiting the results. Dr. Wood suggested that if his milk allergy is under a certain percentage, then we can try a food challenge where I bake 1/4 cow’s milk to 3/4 rice milk and see if he has any reaction. I will get the results soon, and will post them as we go along. I have to admit that I’m a little bit scared to try dairy with him, but in looking towards the future, it would be a lot easier if I didn’t have to worry everywhere we went about whether or not an item contained dairy products in it. He was last tested when he was 7 and had not outgrown his milk allergy at all (that said, he had, however, outgrown his egg allergy). He is now 12, so we are hopeful to see what the results are. My hope is that he will be able to tolerate certain levels of dairy by the time he goes off to college. If not, then at least he has the skills necessary to live a happy and healthy life regardless of his allergy.
As far as my soy allergy goes, I asked Dr. Wood about it, and he said that people who are allergic to certain types of trees (which I am highly allergic to as well as many grasses, cats, dust, etc.) can have a higher chance of having a soy allergy as well as an allergy to other legumes. He suggested that I would probably be okay with soy lecithin, soy oil, and soy sauce. As of right now, I have tried all three and have had NO adverse reactions. Yeah!!! I did, however, have a flat bread roll up that had high fiber and protein (from soy), and my throat started to feel like it was swelling shut. Although I love a lot of the healthier options, I suppose that my body can’t tolerate soy in that high concentration. We have been cooking a lot with rice milk and almond milk with a lot of success. All of the recipes thus far in my cookbook have been easily adapted to be soy-free (excluding soy sauce and soy lecithin), which makes me happy:) I bought some coconut milk, and am hoping to come up with a dairy-free/soy-free whipping cream. If I have success, then I will post the recipe:)