Thursday, January 24, 2013

Avoiding dairy. Harder than it sounds!!

Since my son was diagnosed with a dairy allergy I went into full-blown research mode (as I tend to do with everything that is new to me). I read medical journals, went into dairy-free forums, blogs, books, and even some Facebook pages that talked specifically about this topic.

One website with tons of good info is

I liked the info on the website so much that I bought the book “Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living”. 

That had tons of good recipes but also information. 

My husband wanted even more information about dairy allergies and ADHD, so he purchased for us “The Kid-Friendly ADHD & Autism Cookbook, Updated and Revised: The Ultimate Guide to the Gluten-Free, Casein-Free Diet”. 

That is another good book as well. It also shared some very appealing recipes. All fine and good, but my son is a picky eater, and I searched far and wide for recipes that besides being dairy free could be appealing to him….visually and taste wise….so I hit the jackpot with “Cooking for Isaiah: Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Recipes for Easy, Delicious Meals”. 

The author of this book, Silvana Nardone, also has a website , a Facebook page , and is the Editor –in-Chief of “Easy Eats” . This last one is more of a gluten free site, but many times gluten free recipes are dairy free and a good source. My son has seen all the pictures in the book and is excited every time I tell him I am trying out one of the recipes there. So far so good. Anecdotally I can say he is doing much better, both with his allergies and with his ADHD. I can even say all four of us (Mom, Dad, Daughter, Son) are all doing much better health wise, so much so that even if his allergy goes away we will continue to do our best to be dairy free.

It is a pain to be dairy free though. My focus is more on dairy and I was surprised how many thinks use dairy or even casein. The strangest to me was to find out my kids’ multi-vitamin had milk

I have become an expert food label reader. And it is exhausting.

We have decided to do our best to go organic, free of most preservatives, and thus mainly fresh products. We have also decided to do our best to avoid gluten and artificial colors, like Red 40. Red 40 is another one that surprised me how many things contain it. I expected it in my son’s bag of skittles, but then it turned up in a Duncan Hines icing, and again in that multivitamin I already discarded because of the milk. Jeshhhhh!!!

So as I am about to hit the “purchase” button on a vegan multivitamin that is milk free and red 40 free I am hopeful that my whole family will benefit from leading a more simple way of life. 

Don’t get me wrong, because I still am enrolling my son in a study to slowly increase his tolerance to milk, but that is only so he can partake in pizza and cake at birthday parties at some point. Hopefully starting this journey so early in his life will make him a life-long healthy-lifestyle convert. Time will tell.

What healthy life-style changes are you making lately?

Rossana G-A

FTC Disclaimer: I am not compensated to write this post.

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