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mom in Iowa

Nursing Baby With Celiac?

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I am a new member to this community. I went 'wheat and gluten free' 5 days ago, after trying a few other dietary restrictions (chocolate and milk) to see if my sons full body rash would finally clear up. I had been told by doctors that it couldn't be a food allergy since I was nursing, but with each food elimination, he seems to improve. Unfortunately with the chocolate and milk, it seemed to get better for a while and then flare up again. I am still choc. free, dairy free and now wheat and gluten free.

So I guess my question is, could it be celiac in my now 10 month old? and will/could it show up as this in tests, or could have mutated somewhere along the path.... I am just curious I guess.

I don't know of any family members who have (been diagnosed with) celiac.

as a ps. If it could be celiac in my baby, could the 'trace amounts' of gluten in my soy sauce get passed on? and if his symptoms are skin related, could other damage be done as well?

as a pps. if you want to know my thoughts on why he has this mysterious problem, I trace it back to multiple strong antibiotics that were given to him when he was 10 days old and the doc. thought he might have meningitis, then the rash developed soon after, 2 months later the doc saw him and said that he had infected infant acne, so was back on antibiotics (how stupid of me to give them to him)... I just got worse since then. Is there any evidence to support my mommy theory?

thanks for the help and info!

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Yes, gluten can be passed to your baby through breast milk. I personally started reacting to gluten as an infant and my brother, as well. Other people don't have reactions until later on in life. Celiac disease is a genetic thing so it is with you always but people don't get diagnosed until they start showing symptoms. Your son could be having a Celiac reaction or a food intolerance one. If you are gluten-free you need to be 100%!

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My second son had a full-body rash starting at 4 months (within 24 hours of receiving 3 vaccines). The pediatricean just shook his head and siad he'd never seen anything like it, and sentut to a dermatologist, who immediatley said it was a drug rash. It lasted for 8 more months, and morphed into severe blistering eczema. After about a year, it receded to just his elbows, and I didn't think about gluten (had gone gluten and casein-free for a couple of weeks while nursing but there was no change so I gave up and ate gluten and casein again). He's 7 now, and when I stopped eating gluten this year andsimply CUT down his gluten intake, it finally disappeared.

Good for you for nursing! Keep nursing as long as you can (well, a year or two, anyway), and I would try and hold off solid foods til this resolves. I would also do whatever I can to avoid supplementing with formula. La Choy makes soy sauce that doesn't contain gluten. I know, it doesn't taste as good as "real" soy sauce, but you can add a smidgen of molasses, and that really helps the taste.

Good luck, and keep us posted! Maybe a second opinion from a dermatologist might be in order?

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My son had celiac and was a very fussy baby. Always had loose stools. It just got much worse once we introduced solids with gluten in them. I feel he was reacting to gluten in my breastmilk. If so, you would need to eliminate soy sauce. There are gluten free soy sauce's. It is too early to have him tested accurately probably. My son was diagnosed at 14 months, based on weight gain and very positive dietary response. No more reflux, diarhea, fussyness, etc.

Goodluck,

Monica

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Yes, gluten passes in breast milk, and yes a 10 month old can have celiac, my youngest started gettng sick at 10 months and was diagnosed at 12 months.

She was very sick though, so her tests were high pos. I hear that's rare for a small child to have that high of a pos. test. You could ( and I would) make sure your son is 100% gltuen free for at least 6 months and see how he improves. You can go back after that with a gluten challenge and see if he gets sick (but once he is feeling better I don't know why you would want to make him sick, but some people do it anyway)

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First of all, I would try to make sure he has enough friendly bacteria in his gut after all those antibiotics. You can buy acidophilus for infants, which is a white powder you can mix with some breast milk and give to him (I did that with a newborn after they gave her antibiotics after birth without my consent). It doesn't seem to taste too bad, as my youngest daughter had no problem taking it.

And yes, any food (or parts of the food, like gluten) you eat will end up in the baby. My four oldest grandchildren (ALL my oldest daughter's kids) had awful eczema until she tested them for food intolerances. The twins were tested when she was still exclusively breastfeeding them, and were determined to both be intolerant to nightshades, dairy, and one of them to soy as well. When she stopped eating those foods herself, their eczema started to clear up, and they were much happier babies all around.

I remember with my son (who is now 23), whenever I ate anything red (like strawberries, tomatoes, cranberries..........you get the picture) he'd get a raw, sore bum within a day! So, while I nursed him I had to stop eating red things........being healthier myself I am sure, because now I know I am intolerant to them anyway!

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Thanks for all the info and suggestions.

I actually have been giving him acidolphus for kids for about 3 months now, and will continue to do so for another 3 months or so at least. Once again, I seemed to notice an improvement immediately upon starting it, but then the rash/eczema flared up again even while remaining on that. I must also admit that my willpower is not always that great--I saw wonderful improvement immediately so thought to myself 'now I bet I can have chocolate again' and ate a chocolate bar--which could have caused the flare-up if it was yeast related. Needless to say, I think I have learned the lesson the hard way--no cheating until this is figured out--so I am ready and able to do this wheat-free and gluten-free thing and to continue to stay off milk products and chocolate.

So the theory goes: antibiotics caused severe yeast infection, which was not treated or realized for a few months, treatment of that was compromised (mom did not stay strictly sugar free) so damage was done/or systems were stressed which caused allergies to develop.

Is my theory crazy? If it makes sense, would it then make sense that my son has a wheat allergy (possibly not a gluten allergy) that could possibly be outgrown? Celiac disease is hereditary right? Hence it is called a disease-and an allergy isn't necessarily hereditary...

Not that it all makes that much difference as we will be on the same diet--I am actually looking forward to eating a lot of fruit and veggies--and making my hubby and other 2 kids.

thanks again.

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Guest Coopsmom

I am 6 mos pregnant and have a 2 year old diagnosed w/ celiac disease at 18mos. When I breastfeed my newborn, should I eat gluten-free just in case? I have not been diagnosed w/ celiac disease, however I hate to keep eating it to see if she reacts to it through my milk, but how else would we know if she has celiac disease?

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Guest momx3

Personally, I believe it passes through your milk. My youngest had a horrible rash from 2 months old. I was nursing & tried to cut out different things in my diet that I suspected would cause a reaction- milk, eggs, peanuts-- nothing seemed to help. After weaning him at 9 months, he started eating "whole grains"- breads, cereals, english muffins- the rash got worse & he had new symptoms: blistering diaper rash, D 5 times a days (with a clothing change each time!). I finally eliminated the gluten, the rash cleared, the other problems dissappeared. After lagging on the growth chart (he only gained a few ounces from 9-12 months), he packed on 2lbs in 4 weeks while gluten-free. His bloodwork was negative, but the dietary response has been amazing! A dermatologist ordered the test, so I can't wait to hear what my ped has to say when I talk to him next week.....

Good luck! It's hard to see them uncomfortable & not know how to fix it. It sounds like you may be onto something, this board is incredibly helpful. I'm new to all of this too & have learned a great deal.

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It has been determined, through a number of studies, that gluten passes through breastmilk.

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Just to echo the others, gluten, even in tiny amounts passes through breast milk. My daughter is breastfed and was deathly ill last summer. At the time my son was being tested for celiac and I begged drs. to test her, but they blamed the fact that she is a heart baby with all her issues. I went gluten free and saw drastic improvements over night. The turn around was truly amazing.

About the small amounts, my daughter is so sensitive that any amount that I eat makes her projectile vomit and vomit blood. Mother's Day my SIL made me a gluten-free egg custard. I didn't know it had been cut with the same knife as a cake, though. She got soooo sick and later we pieced it all together. Even that tiny amount that wasn't visible caused a major reaction in her.

My daugher has a feeding tube and I've been pumping going on 14 mos. now. Good for you for being so diligent with your diet. I'm eliminating gluten, dairy and eggs with my daughter. I also nursed my son for 20 mos. because he had a dairy allergy, so I was dairy free with him. Hang in there!

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Coopsmom, if you are worried about breast milk you should probably be worried about eating gluten while pregnant then, too.

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My youngest is 6 1/2 months old and still exclusively breastfeed. He's starting to want to nurse more so I don't know how much longer I can hold him off of solids.

He broke out in eczema on his face just after his 2 month well check/vaccinations. One of the vacs has soy protein in it. Anyway, I underwent allergy testing to try and figure out what he may be reacting to. Among other things I am allergic to soy and gluten. I had cut out soy before testing and gluten (mostly) after testing. His eczema got better and is now pretty much cleared up. He still has some kind of rash on the back of his head but it's not bad. I have just recently decided to cut out oats since my enterolab results came back with an active sensitivity. I can tell you that he is my barometer as to whether I eat something "wrong". He will have a small flare up pretty quickly. No matter how small the amount of gluten that you eat, if your child is allergic, he will respond with a more active rash. I ordered this balm from Australia which is really good (and really expensive). I use it now when necessary and sometimes will just put a little on his face when he goes down for the night (he's just started waking up again though, bummer).

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My youngest is 6 1/2 months old and still exclusively breastfeed. He's starting to want to nurse more so I don't know how much longer I can hold him off of solids.

If he's going through a monster growth spurt, he might just be nursing more often to get you to produce more milk. Make sure you drink a lot! I suppose it's silly to tell you to get enough rest, isn't it? :P

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From personal experience, yes gluten is passed in the breatmilk. Both of my sons were very fussy as infants and would not eat very much. I eliminated all the gassy causing foods my doctors told me to with no positive results. My babies were both failure to thrive, yet none of the doctors I went to could figure out what was wrong with them. They just told me, they took after your small frame. I knew that wasn't it!!! I had never even heard of celiac disease or gluten free. I was also a failure to thrive baby and had every symptom of celiac disease since I was born. I was always sick and had seen dozens of doctors. It amazes me how little the medical profession knows about celiac disease. I went through 29 years of being sick, my sons went through 4 years; 20 months of being sick, before we were all finally diagnosed. My two children and myself have had celiac since birth. This is one of those diseases that doctors still think is rare, or will eventually go away, and hesitate to test patients for. Just look at me, I can think of dozens of conditions I have suffered from that could have been avoided with one simple blood test. If your baby is sick, it is a good idea to get him/her tested. Also, if going off all gluten is too hard for you, start your baby on formula. There is so much hype about breatfeeding, and that it is the healthiest thing to do for your baby. In my case, it was the worst thing I could have done for my babies.

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I'm so glad you and your sons were finally diagnosed. I'm sorry you had to endure so much.

I just wanted to state that the reason I suggested the breastfeeding was that my daughter cannot tolerate any formulas at all. this is what has worked for us when nothing else will. She gets violently ill with anything but breastmilk while I'm gluten-free. Trust me, if she could tolerate it, I would love to have it!!!!! :P

Just curious - how were the kids diagnosed?

From personal experience, yes gluten is passed in the breatmilk. Both of my sons were very fussy as infants and would not eat very much. I eliminated all the gassy causing foods my doctors told me to with no positive results. My babies were both failure to thrive, yet none of the doctors I went to could figure out what was wrong with them. They just told me, they took after your small frame. I knew that wasn't it!!! I had never even heard of celiac disease or gluten free. I was also a failure to thrive baby and had every symptom of celiac disease since I was born. I was always sick and had seen dozens of doctors. It amazes me how little the medical profession knows about celiac disease. I went through 29 years of being sick, my sons went through 4 years; 20 months of being sick, before we were all finally diagnosed. My two children and myself have had celiac since birth. This is one of those diseases that doctors still think is rare, or will eventually go away, and hesitate to test patients for. Just look at me, I can think of dozens of conditions I have suffered from that could have been avoided with one simple blood test. If your baby is sick, it is a good idea to get him/her tested. Also, if going off all gluten is too hard for you, start your baby on formula. There is so much hype about breatfeeding, and that it is the healthiest thing to do for your baby. In my case, it was the worst thing I could have done for my babies.

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