Monday, November 18, 2013

Eating Allergen Free

It's been a major adjustment learning how to eat allergen free, but I think I'm finally getting the hang of it. Initially, I thought she just had a dairy allergy, but I think many of the common allergens bother her as she still had blood in her stool, so I've eliminated gluten, dairy, soy, tree nuts, fish and corn. At first, I thought that meant eating meat, fruits and veggies which is great, but can be a bit boring as well as time consuming. And it's really hard to cook 3 meals a day plus snacks with a 10 week old. After trying a few things and exploring different brands and blogs, I've found some really good food that's not making this diet seem so bad.

For Breakfast:

If you're from the south, and you like grits, this is a good alternative. It's brown rice cereal and quinoa flakes. I put in a little butter substitute, and it's delish. 

Speaking of butter substitute, I use Earth Balance - 

It's pretty good. Pre-Ellie, I would've never used anything like this simply because I felt like I don't want to use artificial things like fake butter and fake meat, but when you're so severely limited in your diet, you'll concede to a few things. 

Something I've tried recently, but am not sure how it will affect her, is sausage. We typically love Jimmy Dean sausage but it has so many ingredients that are not pronounceable, that I decided to try Bob Evans. (My husband took a trip to Bi Lo vs Whole Foods). 

When eating Gluten Free, you have to be careful with non organic meats because even though the meat itself may not have gluten, the feed corporate farms use has wheat, and it can be passed through. Ideally, any meat one eats would be from a grass fed animal. The other thing you have to look for is, does the meat have casein in it? Many times, they use fillers and casein will be in meat, especially deli meat. 

When an infant has a reaction to dairy in it's diet, it's not the lactose, but the milk protein which is casein. So you have to look closely at ALL ingredients because many things have casein. For example, at Trader Joe's, there some chips I wanted but they contained casein. Chips. Like, chips. And from Trader Joe's, which is why I don't like that store. Whole Foods is expensive as is Earth Fare, but they take the time to monitor what ingredients are in the food and are very specific in making sure the ingredients are whole or the package is properly labeled. The Fresh Market and Trader Joe's are just hipster expensive groceries that have cool packaging vs actually being organic or of high quality. 

This is delicious! And it's so nice to finally have some ice cream because I have been wanting some so badly! 

These are actually pretty good too. Would I buy them if I could eat dairy, no. But as a sub, they're really good. 

One thing that I haven't found that's free of all allergens, and that's bread. There is no bread or bread dessert that doesn't at least have soy, corn, or almond meal in it. Other than that, it hasn't been too bad. And as a side note, I've lost all of my baby weight. I'm fitting into my pre pregnancy clothes at 11 weeks out. What a nice side effect :)

I'll start putting up recipes of things that I like because it's REALLY REALLY hard to find recipes that are completely allergen free and if anyone else is having these issues, I'd hope that I can help.