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ItchyMeredith

Messy Non-celiac Babies/toddlers

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I am a celiac mother of two non-celiac toddlers (as far as I know). For those of you who have or have had babies and toddlers in your house you know how messy their eating can be. I am a stay at home mom and I prepare meals and clean up after them all day long. I do let them eat gluten and have to sweep and vacuum the crumbs. Is this dangerous for me? Could this gluten be making its way into my body? I have been gluten free for 6 months now and I was doing really well. My DH was mostly gone until last week and then BAM

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Have you considered getting a dog; they're good with crumbs! ;)

We're facing a similar problem now that our toddler (16 m/o) has joined us at the table. It is getting really hard keeping her from contaminating our 4 year old's food and my food. (I'm still giving her gluten because I want to be able to have accurate testing on her at her two year check up.)

My suggestions is to get a one of those handheld rechargeable vacuums and keep it near the table. Use that for clean up instead of your hands.

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My take on this is this:

I would absolutely NOT have babies and toddlers eat gluten around me if I can help it. My house is gluten-free, period. While my husband and youngest daughter (she is 16, no toddler, and was recently diagnosed by Enterolab as gluten intolerant) were still eating gluten in this house, I know I was being glutened all the time.

I was also babysitting (in their house, they just moved too far away from me to keep looking after them) three little boys, 4, 3 and 18 months. And I know I got glutened all the time. Even if you are diligent with the crumbs, will you stop them kissing you after eating? Will you wash THEIR hands and faces a million times a day? Are you willing to brush their teeth and rinse their mouths after they eat anything containing gluten?

If you have answered no to any of the questions above (and really, who is able to do that?) then you are at risk.

My oldest daughter has five children. They are 7, two five-year-olds, 3, and 16 months. The oldest, one of the twins and the youngest react very badly to gluten, as does my daughter. There is no way in the world she will give the other twin and the three-year-old gluteny food! It would be a nightmare.

Dandelionmom, how do you know the testing will be accurate at your little girl's two-year checkup? The tests are notoriously unreliable for kids under six. Will you, even if she has symptoms, keep feeding her gluten until she has positive results?

Usually little kids are severely ill, some near death, by the time their tests will be positive. Who is to say that some of the damage won't be permanent? There is one way to prevent that: Acknowledge the fact that in small children the diet is the best test of them all.

You would be surprised the symptoms some kids have, who you believe to be asymptomatic. Some of them are temper tantrums, clinginess, being whiny, being extremely moody, dark circles under their eyes, 'growing pains' (there is no such a thing), joint pains, tummy aches, laziness (if you have no energy, you don't feel like doing anything), AD(H)D, constipation as well as diarrhea, being really skinny, failure to thrive, reflux, and I could go on and on. Most people don't connect these to celiac disease. In fact, most doctors haven't got a clue that these could be symptoms!

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Guest j_mommy

A Gluten free house is teh best way to go.

Te handheld vacumm is a good idea...just be careful when you empty it so all of that doesn't puff into the air when you empty it!!!

My son is three and he's eats gluten-free at home...he has gluten at Daycare(which he doesn't get alot of gluten there aas I send some gluten-free things there too...he has had no sysmptoms ect but he likes and is used to alot of the gluten-free food)

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Ursa said it so well it leaves little left to add other than to say that I agree totally with making your home gluten free. Testing on little ones is not accurate most times and making your home gluten free is not going to increase their chances of developing the disease, but it may well decrease it. I would make the house gluten free, not just to help you but also to help the little ones. A lot of damage can be done to learning abilities and body before people even think about celiac. Some young people first present with depressive and anxiety symptoms, OCD and learning disabilities years before gut symptoms show up. Celiac also does not follow normal genetic recessive or dominent patterns, the chances are very high that your children, even if not testing positive will need to be on the diet also.

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Have you considered getting a dog; they're good with crumbs! ;)

We're facing a similar problem now that our toddler (16 m/o) has joined us at the table. It is getting really hard keeping her from contaminating our 4 year old's food and my food. (I'm still giving her gluten because I want to be able to have accurate testing on her at her two year check up.)

My suggestions is to get a one of those handheld rechargeable vacuums and keep it near the table. Use that for clean up instead of your hands.

I agree with dandelionmom, I would get a handheld rechargeable vacum and keep it charged all the time and use it. I also have a dog, who likes to eat the crumbs. I am the one in my house who has celiac. My family does not. My oldest who is 22 does not have it and my 7 year old does not as well. I tried to make my house gluten free and it wasn't fair to the family. My 7 year old was eating my snacks/ cakes/ breads etc and they are loaded with more fat and sugar to give them flavor.(not helping her weight any) The children need the vitamins that come in regular gluten food, esp when they are growing. We are the ones with the malabsorbtion problem not them. Just have them always have their snacks and food at the kitchen table and make it a routine that when they are done, they need to wash their little hands and faces. Sorry if I come off strong on this, I know a mother who will not allow her family to have anything regular even when they are at a restaurant that has a gluten free menu becuase it is not fair to her daughter. You can't punish the other children. Good luck on what you decide. No matter which way you go, its not an easy decision.

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I'm glad you posted this as I am pregnant with my first and both my husband and I are gluten-free. We've decided to maintain the gluten-free status of the household although that decision did not come easily or without guilt.

We will allow him to get gluten outside of the house and will purposedly put him in daycare a few days a week so he gets exposure to it. But, I can't be a good mom and dad can't be a good dad when we are suffering from the side effects of gluten exposure so for us it makes sense to keep a gluten-free household. If my gluten reactions were less severe I'd maybe consider allowing cheerios or snack foods but if I get glutened I'm out for at least a day if not three days with migraine headaches and the big D not to mention I'm a bit of a crab :)

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Dandelionmom, how do you know the testing will be accurate at your little girl's two-year checkup? The tests are notoriously unreliable for kids under six. Will you, even if she has symptoms, keep feeding her gluten until she has positive results?

Thank you for your concern! Of course we don't know it will be accurate but after long consultations with our pediatrician and GI and reading everything we could find on the topic we've chosen this path as the best one for our family. We now have a pretty good idea of what symptoms to watch for (since our now 4 year old is diagnosed) and we'll have to keep reevaluating the diets for our two children who are on a non-celiac diet. Right now, our 7 year old and toddler will only be partially gluten-free.

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When it was just me gluten free in our household yes I did glutened quite frequently. Now my daughter shows symptoms and my husband does and they are on a gluten free diet also which makes it easier around our house but harder for my 3 year old when we are visiting and at parties at other houses but I'm hoping it will be normal for her and she will get accustomed to it.

finally diagnosed- I'm not trying to be argumentative but I was told by my gi. dr. that there are no health benefits from eating gluten that cannot be obtained in other foods. He stated being gluten free even when not needed would not cause a deficiency. I was wondering where you derived your information from because it is contradictory to what I was told. I inquired about it since I was very concerned with my daughter's health when it was apparent she was getting rashes from gluten.

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Our house is mostly gluten-free, our DD is the only one who has a positive diagnosis and we have one of those messy little 2y/o boys (husband too :D ) Son gets LOTS of gluten at preschool and a small amount at home, but I'm not one for all the junk food that is the gluten diet so we don't have any of that stuff in the house-I try to find alternatives, like those new gluten-free multigrain chips at Costco. The only gluten items in the house are bread and cereal. We don't have a dog but we have a broom-vac which I LOVE, but I'm kind-of a clean freak anyway, so crumbs are always at a minimum. I'm one of those crazies that vaccuums the whole house at least every other day ;) My DD is very sensitive, the tiniest bit sends her to the bathroom for 2 days-non stop, and we haven't had a CC episode since her diagnosis-only when we've eaten out.

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It is always best to have a gluten free household, however that is not always feasable.

I have a gluten limited household, basically bread and cereal. Since we already had gluten in the house for my husband when my son was a toddler (he is now 19), he ate a lmited amount of gluten at home from the time we introduced it at about 14 months. I also worked full time so I wasn't cleaning up after him all day. The gluten was limited, NO crackers, cake, cookies etc...

If we had not already had gluten in the house my son would have eaten gluten free inside the house.

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When it was just me gluten free in our household yes I did glutened quite frequently. Now my daughter shows symptoms and my husband does and they are on a gluten free diet also which makes it easier around our house but harder for my 3 year old when we are visiting and at parties at other houses but I'm hoping it will be normal for her and she will get accustomed to it.

finally diagnosed- I'm not trying to be argumentative but I was told by my gi. dr. that there are no health benefits from eating gluten that cannot be obtained in other foods. He stated being gluten free even when not needed would not cause a deficiency. I was wondering where you derived your information from because it is contradictory to what I was told. I inquired about it since I was very concerned with my daughter's health when it was apparent she was getting rashes from gluten.

i am not sure if i replied. my son was at the computer when i came back the post was gone. if i replied twice sorry.

i was told by my daughters nutrionist (who we saw for stomach pains/sluggishness) that if she isn't celiac that she should eat gluten foods. that she needs the vitamins that are in it. my daughter is hypoglycemic. i found that there are not alot of nutrionists who are well versed in this area. when i was first diagnosed i was told that it would be okay to have a little piece of birthday cake if i wanted it. little did she know. i love looking on these posts. i guess i am one of the lucky ones with celiac (if you want to call it luck) that does not have such a severe reaction if i touch it. i wouldn't want to have to find out how to live that way. good luck and thanks

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You daughter's pediatrician knows very little about nutrition (no surprise here, most doctors don't) if he says she needs the gluten foods for good nutrition. NOBODY needs any grains to be healthy. In fact, grains are unhealthy for everyone, and everybody would be better off without them.

I don't regularly eat any so-called gluten-free foods, since you are right, they aren't very healthy for the most part. Too high in carbs and sugars, and a lot of them contain hydrogenated fats. But how is it punishing children to feed them healthy, natural foods, making them healthier than their peers?

If you feed kids vegetables, meat, fruit, nuts and rice as their main staples, with the occasional treat thrown in, how is that punishing them?

My daughter's kids have numerous intolerances, as does she and her husband. Two of them are intolerant to nightshades (the twins). All of them are intolerant to dairy. My daughter and one child can't have corn. Three of them can't tolerate soy. The oldest granddaughter gets sick from the combination of eggs and tomato, as well as eggs and grain (so my daughter bakes with an egg replacement out of flax seeds). It is very tricky to feed them all, especially with all of them being gluten-free as well.

And still, none of them ever feel deprived. None of them try sneaking foods they shouldn't have when visiting, they are quite content with their diet. My daughter makes sure she always has healthy snacks on hand for them.

And yes, they take a multivitamin every day, to be sure they get all the vitamins they need. Which is a good idea for anybody, really.

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finally diagnosed- I would look into what the nutritionist stated to you. From what I have read gluten is 70% protein (which could be easily found in many other foods) and 30% water. From what I understand there are no vitamins or minerals derived from gluten itself.

Unfortunately me and my daughter both are very sensitive to it in regards to symptoms. I ate a sliver of a granola bar if that and it was labeled gluten-free but then I noticed when I bit into it and it had gluten-free oats in it. I spit it out as best I could not wanting to chance if I am one of the rare ones who reacts to gluten-free oats too, well about 10 minutes later I had a seizure (not a grand mal thank goodness) which is what always is my first warning sign that I ate gluten. It does have its good points though as it is clearly obvious to me if I eat something questionable since it is almost an immediate reaction so I wont do it again.

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Finally Diagnosed,

I agree with Ursa Major. There isn't any nutritional value in gluten containing foods that can not be found in a gluten free diet. It is my opinion that people with celiac or gluten intolerance eat a more nutritionally balanced diet than most of the population because we know what is in everything we eat. This is because we eat less processed food and read the labels on everything.

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finally diagnosed- I would look into what the nutritionist stated to you. From what I have read gluten is 70% protein (which could be easily found in many other foods) and 30% water. From what I understand there are no vitamins or minerals derived from gluten itself.

Unfortunately me and my daughter both are very sensitive to it in regards to symptoms. I ate a sliver of a granola bar if that and it was labeled gluten-free but then I noticed when I bit into it and it had gluten-free oats in it. I spit it out as best I could not wanting to chance if I am one of the rare ones who reacts to gluten-free oats too, well about 10 minutes later I had a seizure (not a grand mal thank goodness) which is what always is my first warning sign that I ate gluten. It does have its good points though as it is clearly obvious to me if I eat something questionable since it is almost an immediate reaction so I wont do it again.

sorry to hear about the seizure. i fortunately only get the basic symptoms of brain fog/joint pain as well as the dreaded other. since this post, i have looked into the celiac center at the BI hosp in boston. i am going to make a appointment with a nutrionist there, they specialize in celiac. i have always in the back of my mind, thought my daughter my have something going on with gluten, but all the blood work comes back neg. but she has all my symptoms, fatigue, cranky, very teary at times and she is always pale looking, not to mention since she has been born, chronic constipation. but they say it is hypoglycemia?

thanks for the info from everyone. everyday is a learning process for me. i have only been diagnosed for a little over a year now and finally some of my symptoms related to celiac are clearing up.

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sorry to hear about the seizure. i fortunately only get the basic symptoms of brain fog/joint pain as well as the dreaded other. since this post, i have looked into the celiac center at the BI hosp in boston. i am going to make a appointment with a nutrionist there, they specialize in celiac. i have always in the back of my mind, thought my daughter my have something going on with gluten, but all the blood work comes back neg. but she has all my symptoms, fatigue, cranky, very teary at times and she is always pale looking, not to mention since she has been born, chronic constipation. but they say it is hypoglycemia?

thanks for the info from everyone. everyday is a learning process for me. i have only been diagnosed for a little over a year now and finally some of my symptoms related to celiac are clearing up.

You know, hypoglycemia is a common symptom of celiac disease. It sounds to me like your daughter has celiac disease as well. Blood tests are not very reliable, and false negatives are common. In young children, the diet trial is the most valid test. Rather than having her suffer longer, why don't you just have her eat gluten-free as well? I bet you'll have a 'new kid' within weeks!

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I think it is important to remember even when we don't have a recognizable reaction to gluten it can still be doing internal damage. The various reactions we have to gluten aren't the real problem. It's the sometimes silent destruction of our villi that can shorten our life span.

We are a gluten free household even though I am the only diagnosed celiac. My children all carry the gene and have symptoms. My husband tested negative but has many health problems. When we made the decision to forgo gluten all together we saw real changes. No more constipation, no migraines, no mysterious tummy aches.

Wheat, barley, rye and oats don't contain any nutrition that can't be found elsewhere. I'm not sure that I understand the not wanting to punish them part. There are plenty of naturally gluten free yummies to be found.

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Finally diagnosed....you posted while I was posting! Your dd sounds like a combo of my kids! I had one cranky, crying one and one who has been constipated since two. They are both doing fantastic. My son had been taking Miralax for the past four years. He hasn't had it in a month and is going every other day. It is truly amazing because he could not go without it before. My own daughter had high negative numbers so that was the push for me to give it a try. If you look around on the board you'll find some other folks who have similar experiences.

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I also agree that no one *needs* celiac to have a healthy diet. Most of the things I've had to cut out since diagnosis are the high-gluten processed foods like white bread, chips, cookies, cereal, etc, and those contain a lot of sugar and HFCS and other ingredients that aren't considered good for anyone. Products that contain small amounts of gluten like chicken broth or soy sauce don't gain their nutritional value from the gluten and can easily be replaced with a non-gluten alternative with equivalent nutritional value.

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May I add a different angle to this discussion.

The question being, if only one person is gluten intolerant in the family, is it "fair" to the others to make them be gluten-free, at least at home? In other words, to have a safe, gluten-free home for just one person's benefit.

One of the big issues with children is "fairness." Whenever things aren't going their way, it's "not fair." (This is also a problem with some grownups, unfortnately). Just read the many posts from members on this forum who have to deal with insensitive, uncaring spouses or grown/nearly-grown children.

Why not turn the perspective around and use it as a positive example of showing sensitivity and caring toward others who have a disabilty. This could be a real character-development opportunity for children of a celiac relative (siblings, parents, etc.) to learn how to compromise for the good of another person, rather than just thinking about themselves. If the leading adult in the family NEVER mentions that it is "unfair to the other children", and always redirects such comments of unfairness to a more positive, caring attitude and rewarding those who show a caring, sensitive attitude, just think of the resulting character these children will be developing.

Just my take.

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This has turned into an interesting discussion. I think I am going to make this house mostly gluten free for the kids with the exceptions being on special occasions with special care given. My husband eats gluten and I have no problem with that because he can clean up after himself. Luckily, my kids are so young (3 and 1) that they won

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finally diagnosed- Its so hard to know which way to go sometimes with the conflicting information we receive. I developed a big distrust for dr's through this unfortunately and just now I'm trusting them a little more but I still always check on it myself. Thank goodness for the internet as I would not have any clue about gluten at all without it. Honestly my seizures are not a big deal to me anymore. They arent usually big ones, its like a weird headache with deja vu and a bit of confusion. I do get a little more fearful of having a little one who Im responsible for but Im thankful I finally figured out what it is. My main concern is the autoimmune disorders I have developed that are still coming out years later. Im hoping that my daughter will be saved from it by being on the gluten-free diet as of 2 years old. I feel blessed to be aware of this diet before I had the horrible ailments some experience especially refractory sprue. I know its hard to think of our kids having gluten intolerance but its amazing sometimes the changes we see in them.

Meredith there is kid's celiac books out that might help explain it more to your kids, my daughter is getting them in her birthday gifts this year. If you do a search for celiac kids there are quite a few that come up on Amazon.

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i am gluten intolerant, not celiac (i've been negative in all tests, but feel so much healthier since going gluten-free, and now get an itchy throat on top of GI issues when i've been glutened)...and in speaking with my GI doc while i was pregnant with my son (he is 21 months old now), we came to the conclusion after much research on both our parts, that my son would stay gluten-free until he was 3 years old. so he eats what i eat, and my hubby will eat our stuff when i make a main dish, or he eats gluten stuff when he fixes just for himself.

from the research that i and my GI doc had read, it showed that 3 is the ideal age to introduce any allergen that one of the parents have, as then their digestive system is more mature and hopefully it will keep my son from getting gluten intolerance. We also didnt introduce ANY allergen foods until he was 1.

I am also now happy that we made this decision with all the research regarding autism and Gluten-free Casein-free diet, as my son is approaching the age where autism typically rears its head, and i figure that already having him gluten-free cant hurt our chances of him not having it :) *knock wood*

this is also so much easier too on me as a stay at home mom...peyton (my son) has no idea what he is missing, he loves my gluten-free stuff like pretzels and bread and cookies, and i dont have to tell him that he cant share his food with me...i would hate to have to discourage a kid from sharing...just my opinion though.

anyways...good luck to everyone as i know its not an easy decision to make either way....i cant even imagine doing it with a kid in daycare where they arent as supervised during mealtimes! its hard enough for me to deal with church nursery when you have high schoolers that dont quite get it watching him...but so far so good as far as i know *crosses fingers*

angie

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    I am celiac and eat gluten-free, DF, SF and sunflower free because I'm highly reactive to all 4. I discovered about a year and a half ago that I would have severe and immediate GI reactions, similar to as if I ate dairy, to anything with sunflower/safflower products in it, but I think that's when using the oil became more prevalent too. Strange because I loved sunflower seeds as a kid. I've also linked it to places I've eaten out where everything was fine and then discovered they started using s
    So i recently had a baby and 3 months postpartum I started celery juicing and after juicing my stomach would be in so much pain. So I stopped it for a while and a whole month no pain or issues. I made an apt with a GI doctor to just get my blood work checked everything came back great except the Ema it was 1:20 he said it was strange because all the other Celiac panel test were negative my Ttg and the genetic screening even. So I made an apt with another doctor for second opinion she stated that
Potatoes are good for breakfast! Your concoction sounds pretty good. K, how about this? Peel & dice potatoes, fry them in just enough olive oil to keep them from sticking in a skillet until they begin getting crispy. Toss in diced sweet peppers or maybe chili peppers, onions to soften. I know you're not doing egg yolks b/c of iodine but you can do the whites. Pour egg white on top until the white is done. If you have a steak or some leftover steak, you can heat that on the side. YUM!
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