When to put child gluten-free

When to put child gluten-free

When to put child gluten-free

Nicole asks: “I was diagnosed with celiac disease 10 years ago, when I was 18. I gave birth to a healthy baby boy 3 years ago and I am still breastfeeding him. I initially kept him off all gluten, until he was about 14-15 months old. I started to introduce small amounts of gluten.

He was probably eating gluten for about 4 months before I took him to the Dr for allergy tests, as he was reacting to something that caused a nasty blistered rash on his face. My GP sent him for a blood test, skin prick tests, and also took a stool sample. All the tests came back inconclusive/negative. Upon further research I discovered that celiac disease would probably not be picked up till his immune system was fully developed, after 3 years of age.

So I made the decision to take him off gluten. His rash cleared up alot, I have since removed dairy and corn (I can’t tolerate either of these foods) and he no longer gets rashes, ear infections (he had 6 in the 6 months he was ingesting gluten), his stool is normal and his behaviour has improved immensely. On a subsequent trip to the Dr, about something unrelated, my GP berated me for taking him off gluten, that it was a very important part of his diet and I should reintroduce it immediately. Luckily I already knew that that was basically a load of rubbish, and dismissed her claims and continued with the balanced and nutritious diet we had been having.

My son turned 3 at the beginning of this month, and his food intolerances have been playing on my mind. I want him to live the most normal life he can, but obviously don’t want to expose him to something that will damage him.”

“My question to you is: is there any way that he can be tested for food allergies? Bearing in mind that he has been off gluten and dairy for around 20 months, and corn or about 4. And also, is it a possibility that my son can’t process gluten and dairy because he wasn’t exposed to it in uetero, or via breastfeeding?”

Thank you for your time, Nicole

My reply: Great question. Keep your son gluten-free and dairy free. These are not great foods – give him lots of fresh fruit/veggies/fish/meat/rice/alternative grains.

You would have to feed him with these allergens for a few months before the immune system made enough antibodies to test – why make him sick?

You are not depriving him. You are keeping him healthy.

Cheers, Dr Rodney Ford