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Breastfeeding - dairy free help

(53 Posts)
SendHelpAndGin Mon 19-Mar-18 16:57:46

Hi all

Bit of background - my 7 week old has symptoms of silent reflux (unsettled and frequently cries, knees up and back arching, fussy feeder, poor sleeper). Dr prescribed gaviscon, just seemed to send him on the road to constipation. Next we tried ranitidine - he started throwing up a lot and seemed even more unsettled, so we've just taken him off that over the weekend.

He had to have a bit of formula over the weekend when my parents were babysitting, and afterwards came out with a rash around his eye that seemed to be quite itchy for him (lots of rubbing). Dr has today said could be dairy allergy and prescribed dairy free formula as the best test of this - even times though I'm currently breastfeeding.

I'm reluctant to switch to formula until we know dairy is definitely an issue - is this really the best thing to do?! And from anyone who has previously eliminated dairy from their own diet and carried on breastfeeding, any tips? Good dairy free ranges or surprising things dairy is in which I'll need to avoid? It's going to be a challenge as I definitely eat more than my fair share of choc digestives and we're over reliant on convenience meals like a good old lasagne!


GrumpyGoose Mon 19-Mar-18 17:36:19

Hi I'm currently dairy free and breastfeeding! It's going fine, and my little boy is much better. He's 6mo now and just had allergy tests which showed he's allergic to both cows milk and egg so I've cut them both out for now.

If you're determined to carry on breastfeeding dairy free it can definitely be done and it does get easier. If you're used to eating a lot of dairy you do need to be sure you're still getting enough fat and calories in your diet.

If you find cutting out dairy doesn't improve matters over time you may want to try cutting soya too as there's quite a high percentage of people who are allergic to both

GrumpyGoose Mon 19-Mar-18 17:47:08

Milk wise I think oat is best personally, I think it's like soya but milder in flavour. Oatly barista is meant to be worth its weight in gold but I haven't been able to try it get! I also think the koko coconut milk is very mild in flavour and quite like this! (And that's coming from someone who only likes coconut in a pina colada 😜) When it comes to weaning (weeks away I know) the alpro growing up milk (giraffe on the front) is meant to be the closes match to cows milk and we were advised we could use in cooking and in cereal but not main drink til 1. It's actually really nice, I've had most of it 🙈.

I've found the best butter alternative is Pure sunflower spread, or tastes of very little which is far better than margarine IMO! I've heard great things about an avocado oil spread in Waitrose but haven't made it out with the snow yet. Things like flora (except for the dairy free one) have buttermilk in.

Oatly and alpro do an oat and soya (respectively) single cream. I've had the oatly one and it's actually quite nice and even better over puddings etc.

I've tried Oatly's "creme fraiche" which was weird in its own but in cooking etc tastes good!

Oatly vanilla custard is good, and I've been told the alpro custard is also good!

Alpro yoghurts are decent! And the Tesco free from fromage frais are actually really nice!

I think it pays to spend more on the things you'll miss most - I spend more on chocolate because I think the cheap shit really is shit when it comes to dairy free!

Violife do vegan cheeses which are meant to be brilliant. I've had the cream cheese and it's not bad but I've heard good things about the Parmesan equivalent.

I've tried one Tesco dairy free cheese so far, it was a round smoked "cheese". It was disgusting. I haven't had the heart to try a different one yet 😂 apparently pizza hut's vegan cheese is a brilliant alternative if you like pizzas, someone once told me the brand was Mozzarisella, there's an online vegan shop you can buy it from.

I'll come back with more things as I think of them!! I've only been strictly dairy free for a month max now and I've pretty much made my peace with it 🤷🏻‍♀️ and I used to drink milk all the time, eat a lot of cheese, slather butter on bread, chocoholic etc

WasThatPlaceTHESUN Mon 19-Mar-18 17:57:41

I gave up dairy for a while and it wasn't nearly as hard as I thought it would be. There are so many dairy-free alternatives these days (milk, mayo, cheese, yogurt etc.) and most products will have dairy ingredients listed in bold so it's easy to spot. Also Oreos are dairy free 😋 I have reintroduced dairy into my diet now but have continued to drink oat milk and eat dark chocolate amongst other things, I find you just get used to it.

Eating out is where it can be trickier but again, lots of restaurants now have vegan options on the menu or are willing to substitute the dairy elements if you ask.

m33r Mon 19-Mar-18 20:31:29

nrtft but I didn’t go dairy free with my first as felt the world was over medicalising. At 6 months we have formula and DS had a big reaction.

DS2, I cut it out as soon as he slowed symptoms then nine weeks in had one slice of pizza and a celebration and my previously settled little chap was distraught for two days. Came straight back off it but felt terrible for DS1 who was a really tough tough baby - poor child as i eat a ridiculous amount of cheese and milk in Costa’s! I really wish I had tried it properly with him... might not be the case for you of course but the difference in my two boys is crazy.

Also, Tesco own brand plain choc digestives are dairy free wink

Good luck

m33r Mon 19-Mar-18 20:33:23

*had formula

*showed symptoms

*crlebration as in the chocolate

Sorry was trying to be helpful and had numerous typos!

ISeeTheLight Mon 19-Mar-18 20:34:11

DD has CMPA and I breastfed her for a year. Yes you have to cut all dairy - check all labels as even whey powder would set her off. It also can take up to 4 weeks for all dairy to be out of your and baby's system. But she improved massively and it was very much worth it. She had the same symptoms as your DD - and also had silent reflux.

NameChange30 Mon 19-Mar-18 20:34:42

There’s lots of great advice on this website/blog, including how to confirm CMPA and a fab dairy free treats list smile

ISeeTheLight Mon 19-Mar-18 20:36:24

Sorry your DS!

betterbemoreorganised Mon 19-Mar-18 20:45:07

I’m bf my 8 month old who is dairy free. I was advised to avoid soya because babies with cmpa can be more likely to be allergic to soya.
I would avoid the vegan cheeses they’re not great. Oatly is the best milk substitutes and the barista edition is brilliant, custard white sauce etc can all be made with it. Vitalite is my favourite spread and is also great in baking. As others have said eating out can be tricky but more and more places now offer a vegan option. It’s really hard at first but I soon got the hang of it, it’s just a case of thinking of substitutes for example my cheese on toast became hummus spread on toast.

boatrace30 Mon 19-Mar-18 20:46:44

Stork is great if you want to bake your own dairy free stuff. You can substitute it for butter in any recipe (though only the more solid golf wrapped one is dairy free. The tub isn't)

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 19-Mar-18 20:51:33

boat I’m DF as I have CMPA. Is All Stork DF?

evaseven Mon 19-Mar-18 20:52:20

The coconut collaborative chocolate pots are delicious! All fake cheese is horrible in my opinion. Probably the worst thing is Tesco dairy free white sauce for lasagna in a jar 🤮

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 19-Mar-18 20:54:37

Sorry posted too soon.

SendHelp Allergy UK hace some good info on CMPA here and Kellymom has this on DF Bfing smile

evaseven Mon 19-Mar-18 20:54:59

Also booja books are amazing. Expensive but worth it for ice cream and chocolates

evaseven Mon 19-Mar-18 20:55:28


JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 19-Mar-18 20:56:32

And Easter Eggs eva smile

Achafi Mon 19-Mar-18 21:02:47

I dairy free and still bf my one year old. I had to switch to Earl grey tea so I can drink black tea. Otherwise it's been quite easy to go dairy free just read all labels I can't believe there's milk in so many things! Ben and Jerry's now do a great vegan range which helps.

SendHelpAndGin Mon 19-Mar-18 21:04:49

Thank you all, this is amazing! Lots of things to try here and really good to here so many people are doing it - I was a bit dismayed when the advice from dr was stop breastfeeding!!

seven201 Mon 19-Mar-18 21:07:52

I breastfed my dairy free daughter until just over one year. God I missed dairy milk! I survived on bourbons and Oreos.

Dairy free pesto tastes the same as normal pesto!
Fake Cheese is shit.

You do get used to it. My daughter is approaching two and still dairy free and now tomato free - we used to have spag Bol once a week and I miss it!

doleritedinosaur Mon 19-Mar-18 21:13:50

Ignore the GP you don’t have to stop breastfeeding.

I’ve gone dairy free twice for breastfeeding, it does take 4-8 weeks to entirely take away symptoms though so be wary of that.

As above cut out all dairy, check everything.

I use alpro almond milk in tea as I can’t stand any others.
Oatly chocolate milk with Cadbury’s hot chocolate powder is the best ever.

Aldi have dark chocolate bunnies in at the moment that are great for chocolate & melting, ive used them for brownies & chocolate Rice Krispie cakes as both boys are dairy & soya free.

Tesco’s have dairy free white lasagne sauce & so do Asda.

Flora freedom is great for baking & normal spread. As is the pure stuff.

Jus roll is dairy free, that’s the pastry & the baking stuff but some does have soya in.

Just make sure you are taking vitamins especially calcium with vitamin D & b12.

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 19-Mar-18 21:15:34

Defintely lots of things you can have. My treat tonight is M&S Single Origin Dark Chocolate and there’s is a packet of McVities Fig Rolls lurking around. Tea was a prawn stir fry with egg fried rice.

Lidl is good as lots of their things are naturally DF. Lots of things you can still eat. One of my favourite lunches is pasta with smoked salmon and rocket. Cook the pasta, stir in some olive oil, fresh lemon juice and lemon zest, smoked salmon and a generous amount of rocket and black pepper. Lots of the 50/50 breads seem to be DF. And if you are eating out, Pizza Express do a mean DF pizza.

LorelaiVictoriaGilmore Mon 19-Mar-18 21:22:04

I went dairy free for two years while feeding ds. His symptoms went away within a week of me giving up dairy. Lots of good advice on this thread so I'll just add that Starbucks coconut milk caramel lattes are yummy! 😃

QueenOfCatan Mon 19-Mar-18 21:31:21

There are some great groups on Facebook that saved my sanity when I first cut out dairy (and egg and peanut!), I'm a gluten free vegetarian so I properly panicked at first, but once you get into the swing of things it's much easier. There a few cmpa for breastfeeding mothers group on Facebook which is great.

Oatly Barista is amazing, my local morrisons are the only ones who stock it semi reliably. Violife cheeses are really good (though the parmesan causes a hives reaction for my daughter, no idea why!), the fake halloumi is really really nice, tried it for the first time yesterday and loved it!

tesco do a fake cheddar which is the most passable one imo. Surprisingly asda have tonnes of free from things which are really good. Lidl has a lot of stuff that is 'accidentally' dairy free. Dark chocolate is great, tesco have a nice selection as do aldi and lidl (though doble check the latter as some of theirs have milk in for some reason).

seven of you don't mind me asking, how did you determine the need to go tomato free? Asking as my daughter has skin reactions to some fresh tomatoes but is fine with tinned so we're not sure what to do about it, we have the allergy clinic again next week so we planning to ask about it there.

kickingk16 Mon 19-Mar-18 21:31:37

Hi there, just a word on the silent reflux, as my DD suffered with it terribly and still does at 2 years old (we’re still on medication for it.

I tried going dairy free when breastfeeding for a month and it made no difference (also as an experiment for her eczema). My daughter also had a fairly serious milk allergy (made her lips swell up / very ill when we first introduced it) and took a long time to reintroduce it to her diet, but being dairy free for over a year also made no difference to her vomiting / silent reflux. So I just wanted to flag that it’s not necessarily connected, though obviously worth giving a try.

One thing I did want to mention is that Rinitadine can take up to 2 weeks to take effect - it’s not an instant thing like Gaviscon and it’s been very evident when we’ve taken our daughter off it that it takes a while to come out of the system (we regretted doing this when the screaming evenings returned!) and when we put her back on it, it took at least 10 days to take effect again.

Just wanted to mention this in case you’d not tried Rinitadine long enough for it to have effect, as it’s been a godsend for reflux in our case. Good luck!

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