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Any other mum experiencing massive weight loss on allergy diet + BFing?

(16 Posts)
eskimomama Wed 19-Oct-11 10:01:55

Hello dear all

I have posted on this a year ago or more and I still haven't gained any weight.
Here is the story - I've been BFing my DD for 2 years now, and been on a dairy/egg free diet since she was 6 months following her allergy test results.

And I've become so underweight!
I have seen a dietitian a while ago who said I should snack more often, which had little effect (no more loss but no gain either), and who said I should just wean her...
I wouldn't mind weaning her but at this stage it's so bloody hard and I'm so tired all the time that I can't manage. DH would like to help for the night but he can't take more than the weekends.... I would like to try a gentle weaning method but because I'm so underweight and exhausted it's still very hard.

I've also had a lot of worries lately on the family side and lost even more weight in the space of a few days... basically I'm 46kg.... I know it's way too low.

I am eating and snacking every time I can, I found dairy/egg free cakes and everything... but I don't understand why I keep losing weight!
Any suggestions? Thyroid issues maybe? (I'm not sweating, or any usual symptoms of hyperthyroidism though - and tiredness is caused only by lack of sleep due to DD not sleeping great!)

They say you're supposed to have an extra 500 calories a day if you're BFing, which I'm sure I get... so I'm just confused.

Any suggestions would be great.

Thank you

auntierozzi Wed 19-Oct-11 10:15:26

I'm on a high rice pudding diet, although I don't need it. You can pile on pounds with that stuff. Make plenty of delicious puddings. I make them for my kids and finish them all myself....Not recommended for me but definitely for you!

auntierozzi Wed 19-Oct-11 10:17:33

Just seen your dairy free but you can make rice pudding with soya milk. The skin is not so tasty so cover it with foil in the oven. (I was vegan for 2 years but not now.)

CMOTdibbler Wed 19-Oct-11 10:20:06

A good idea is to keep track of what you eat using Food Focus - you might be suprised how little you are eating. You probably need at least 3000 calories a day, more if you are walking a lot.

What do you typically eat in a day ?

garliclover Wed 19-Oct-11 10:39:38

Sorry to hear you're exhausted too. I can relate to this: when b'feeding DS until he was 6 months I lost loads of weight. Like you, went down to 46kg. I weaned him 10 months ago and have only regained a little bit of weight (now about 48kg). I think it's a combination of worrying all the time about DS's allergies, forgetting to eat properly myself because I'm micro-managing his diet instead, walking about 5 times as much as I used to (while pushing increasingly heavy buggy), and genes. When I do eat, I have loads of high-fat stuff, but it doesn't make any difference.

Have you thought about getting tested for iron levels, to see whether mild anaemia may be contributing to tiredness? I know that low iron levels can lead to loss of appetite, which leads to lower iron and then you're in a catch-22 situation.

Are you on any other sort of diet apart from the dairy and egg free one? Do you eat meat and fish?

eskimomama Wed 19-Oct-11 12:37:37

thanks everyone.

Garliclover - yes I do eat meat and fish, and because I was very anaemic during pregnancy, I've been taking an iron supplement almost every day until now. If I forget it I feel like my batteries are all empty!

CMOT - thanks I didn't know Food Focus, will give it a try

Auntierozzi - thanks for the rice pudding suggestion, may I ask how you cook it, I tend to always burn it/fail it...

DH thinks I shouldn't rely on sweet things (cakes, biscuits) to gain weight as it's just going to destroy my health, but I just can't eat steak/beans all the time. If I eat too much I just feel sick...
Never been fat nor a big eater before motherhood, but I am def eating a lot more than before DD was born, as I'm conscious of eating healthy for BFing.

Likeaninjanow Wed 19-Oct-11 13:43:20

I only lost a few pounds on a similar diet while BF, although I was tired All. The. Time. Good you're on iron though, that will be helping.

Can you tell us what you typically eat in a day? We can then perhaps suggest some alternatives?

Rikalaily Wed 19-Oct-11 13:52:27

I didn't lose weight while dairy free while bfing dd3, but I only bfed her for 8 months before I changed her to soya formula (I developed a calcium deficiency and because I'm allergic to sunlight at summer levels the low calcium made me develop a vit D defiency, on top of my thyroid problem it was just too much.

I was tired all of the time and had low iron too. It would be worth getting your thyroid checked, many women's thyroids fail or falter after giving birth, your thyroid may be overactive but you may not have all of the symptoms, I didn't lose weight, in fact I've gained.

What has your GP suggested in regards to your dd? Have you got plans to slowly reintroduce the allergins or will she have to be kept dairy/egg free for life? Dd3 is 17 months and we've just started reintroducing dairy about 2 months ago, very slowly starting with cooked milk and it's going great and she's showed no reaction up to now smile

eskimomama Wed 19-Oct-11 15:00:25

rika She is still very allergic to egg but dairy a bit less. The allergist advised we only give her biscuits containing milk for now (as in cooked milk mixed with other things only). She def can't have dairy in any other way. We're giving her oat milk which she likes, but weaning is another topic (she's very attached to bfing and I'm too exhausted to go cold turkey)

Regarding your thyroid problem, may I ask what symptoms you had?

likeaninja ok I'll try to summarise.
Breakfast - oat meal with nuts and stewed fruits and oat milk or cereals or brown bread/margarine/jam and tea
Mid morning snack - either biscuits or chocolate croissant with tea
Lunch - Meat or Fish with veg and pasta/rice or brown bread - cooking with olive oil
Afternoon snack - capuccino with soy milk, banana
Dinner - same as Lunch but bigger amounts usually

I sometimes have soy chocolate creams for dessert but I find them a bit yucky...

garliclover how tall are you? I'm 168cm (5.6), I should rename myself skeletonmama sad

garliclover Wed 19-Oct-11 15:05:12

An inch shorter than you. For what it's worth, I think you should be hugely proud of yourself for breastfeeding on that diet: I certainly couldn't hack it!

frutilla Wed 19-Oct-11 15:07:51

Have your thyroid bloods taken. I had the same symptoms and weight went down to the forties. Was going hypo...

freefrommum Wed 19-Oct-11 15:22:57

I'm not a dietician but from your sample daily menu I'd say there's not enough fat in your diet given that you're breastfeeding. This is very common when you take dairy and eggs out of your diet. Try adding some avocado into your daily diet as well as more nuts and seeds to snack on regularly as these all contain 'good' fats. Also, try to eat oily fish like salmon and mackerel rather than white fish and leave the skin on chicken. Dark (dairy free) chocolate is another good snacking idea. What about the Alpro soya yoghurts? Less sickly than the desserts and good for your calcium levels. You really should try and eat dessert after each meal if you can. I don't mean you should be stuffing yourself with free-from cakes all the time but a soya yoghurt or avocado and banana maybe?

eskimomama Wed 19-Oct-11 15:31:53

you made me laugh freefrommum only a mom baking allergy-free cakes can understand I suppose :-)

I do have dark chocolate every now and then and nuts as often as I remember (walnuts & pecan). Soy yoghurts I really have to force myself and cakes I rarely have time to bake them so I tend to skip dessert a lot...

I will try to see my GP next week for my thyroid. I know he will say "just wean her and it'll be fine" hmm

Likeaninjanow Wed 19-Oct-11 16:23:24's pretty similar to what I ate, but I also had a late supper before bed e.g. hummous and breadsticks/crisps. I also had lots of potatoes with my meat/fish and added Pure spread to it, as a good source of fat.

I do know how hard it is, so congratulations on getting to this stage smile.

Rikalaily Wed 19-Oct-11 17:17:38

My symptoms vary weekly, my thyroid is swinging between over and underactive but mostly overactive. Atm it's stable my last TSH was 0.60 which is still very close to the lab ranges overactive cut-off, my symptoms are overactive ones but this could change by next week, it changes alot, lol. I can tell by how I feel which way it has swung.

My thyroid is swollen on the left side, scan showed 3cm solid vascular growth, biopsy was clear, it's a colloid nodule. It's a pain, food gets stuck and I've choked on liquids twice.

When it's moving to overactive:

Chest pains
Feeling of anxiety/panic attack almost/jumpy
Can't sleep, usually awake until 2-3am then awake at 7am
Stomach churns, excessive wind
Lethargy later in the day, not sleepiness, just like my body needs more rest but restless at the same time.
Twitchy legs and arms
Itchy skin
Shake if I don't eat regularly

When it normalises or swings to close to underactive:

I ache ALOT, feels like flu without the coldy bit, my bones and joints ache and every movement is a struggle.
Tired all of the time, wake up feeling like I've had no sleep at all, even if I've had 12 hours.
Very fuzzy head, can't concentrate, so bad I've even forgotten my kids Birthdays etc or which day of the week it is.

My weight has gained, I lost 1/2 a stone in 2 months when my thyroid first went wonky but have gained it back plus more since, even though most days I only eat twice a day and usually below 1500 calories.

eskimomama Wed 19-Oct-11 17:38:32

thanks rika this is very useful for me to know, as I have many of the above (overactive) but always put them down on motherhood hormonal effects... Especially the jumpy-panicky bit, my DH says the day DD was born I morphed into a constantly stressed woman whereas I used to be the most easy going person he knew.
I hope it stabilises for you soon - I must say I'm ignorant about thyroid problems...

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