Breastfeeding with a Peanut Allergy

breastfeedingcafecarnivalWelcome to The Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival!

This post was written as part of the Breastfeeding Cafe’s Carnival. For more info on the Breastfeeding Cafe, go to www.breastfeedingcafe.wordpress.com. For more info on the Carnival or if you want to participate, contact Claire at clindstrom2 {at} gmail {dot} com. Today’s post is about breastfeeding in special circumstances. Please read the other blogs in today’s carnival listed below and check back for more posts July 22nd through August 4th!
 


 

Every year, it’s my goal to participate in the Carnival every day. I don’t expect others to do this of course, but considering it was my idea and I’ve run it every year (except last where Timbra so nicely stepped in for me when I was in the throws of PPD), I think it’s a reasonable expectation of myself.

So I was looking at the topic for today and feeling a bit upset that I couldn’t come up with anything to write about. I was kicking myself for not finding a guest poster (I have a great one about nursing an adopted baby that I would love to finish discussing with the poster) and thinking I would have to sit this day out. Then it occurred to me, I have nursed through a “special circumstance.” Peanut’s peanut allergy.

Sometimes I forget that she was ever even allergic to peanuts. I had a friend ask me recently if she could have something because she wasn’t sure if it had nuts and it actually threw me for a loop. It feels like ages ago that I was avoiding anything that had anywhere near a questionable peanut history. It was hell to worry constantly that my child would go into anaphylactic shock and we are very lucky that she grew out of it. It’s not something I would wish on my worst enemy and I feel deep sorrow for any of you out there having to deal with it.

Anyway, it was a chapter of my life where I nursed through something a little out of the ordinary and I figure that if anyone who is in this situation stumbles upon my blog it could help them. So here we go.

When I was told that Peanut was severely allergic to peanuts (yes, I know, very ironic), one of my first questions was if needed to avoid them too since she was nursing. Surprisingly, our specialist allergy doctor had absolutely no clue. So I did my own research.

I’ve heard many things about proteins passing through breast milk and making baby upset (e.g. the mother drinking cow’s milk), but I wasn’t sure about peanuts. I found this article actually saying that peanut allergy could be attributed to breastfeeding and the mother eating peanuts. I also found this article that says that women eating peanuts while breastfeeding or while pregnant does not increase the risk of peanut allergy. The studies done about pregnant women eating peanuts are conflicting too.

So in the end, I decided to play it safe and avoid all nuts in the same way that Peanut did, to the T. Considering that I’m horrible at diets, I’m actually surprised at how well I did with avoiding them. Maybe my next child needs to be allergic to sugar (I kid!). I didn’t eat a candy bar for over a year (I still don’t like them the way I used to). I stopped eating those delicious muffins from Costco. I didn’t eat a single thing that I could not trace its origins. Of course, Peanut avoided all these things too. And not once did I consider quitting breastfeeding so I could eat that damn Twix.

Given the conflicting research of whether or not to avoid peanuts in pregnancy, I did not avoid them when I was pregnant with Twig. I did very purposefully keep her gut virgin and we have yet to give Twig a single vaccine (a whole different post for a different day) to avoid another nut allergy. Thus far, I don’t see a reaction to nuts (though weirdly she does seem to get a sore tummy from beans and dried fruit) and I’m very grateful. I’m also happy to know that if we run into the situation of an allergy again, I can happily eliminate that item from my diet in order to keep nursing my child.

 


 
Here are more post by the Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival participants! Check back because more will be added throughout the day.

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5 thoughts on “Breastfeeding with a Peanut Allergy

  1. Having a little one with a food allergy is SO frustrating. We avoid corn and were told that it’s one of the major allergies kids grow out of. . .recently we tried it out, by way of popcorn, because I was sure that I could not POSSIBLY actually be avoiding corn as well as I thought and she has not bee symptomatic for more than a year. . .sure enough, same tummy trouble as always (no scary ER visits). . .unfortunately, it seems to have set off a domino effect because she’s now showing allergic symptoms to foods she previously had no trouble with. . .I haven’t eaten a tamale in more than three years. . .SOME DAY 🙂 PS. . .thanks for being committed to the carnival every day!

  2. SO. . .just left a long note about living with food allergies. . .here’s the jist. . . we have NOT grown out of our particular one over here, recently introduced it again and now am seeing symptoms of OTHER food allergies that were not previously present (palm to forehead) AND I haven’t had a tamale in over 3 years. . .someday!

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