Spotting a Food Sensitivity Through Breastmilk
Q&A with Veronica Lamb of Radiant Life Consulting
How to Spot a Food Sensitivity Through Breastmilk
As a mother, you want to want your baby to be happy and healthy. As I prepare for my own journey into motherhood, I wanted to be aware of some of the reasons why a baby may not be as happy as you’d hope. I’ve seen friends go through tough periods of colic, pediatrician visits and sleepless nights. I figure the more informed you are with what might be the problem, the quicker you can find a solution!
When I first heard about Veronica Lamb and her business, Radiant Life Consulting, I was intrigued. As an experienced mom, Veronica has handled food sensitivities first hand and now supports pregnant women and new parents with their health and diet. I reached out to pick her brain about her experiences with motherhood and spotting the signs of a food sensitivity through breastmilk and what to do about it. I hope this information helps all of you new moms embarking on your breastfeeding journey!
How did you get into health coaching?
Volunteering and working on social justice causes is a big part of my life. I noticed that myself and partners were often afflicted with health issues. Many of my partners ended up leaving their passions behind, resigned to doing less because of their health issues. I changed my diet to focus on whole foods, with little or no processed foods in my diet. It was literally life changing! I decided to become a health coach to help others fit clean eating into their busy lifestyle, so they have the time, energy, & health to keep pursuing the purpose in life.
How did you end up working with pregnant and breastfeeding women?
For the most part, I was blessed with really healthy pregnancies for both of my kids. My midwives and ob/gyn’s frequently said to me that they wished all of their patients ate like me. After giving birth each time, I realized that my babies were affected by what I ate. For instance, the amount of gas, reflux, or spit-up would change depending on what I had recently eaten. Adjusting my diet around their sensitivities made a dramatic difference in their temperament, sleep schedules, and overall health. I realized that other moms could benefit from pre-planned allergy free meal plans and personalized coaching. Since I was in the new baby season with my second child, I decided to focus my health coaching business down to expecting and breastfeeding moms.
What were your personal experiences with pregnancy and becoming a mom?
I LOVED being pregnant! The feeling of baby moving was such a joy, and I just love baby bumps on expecting mamas! So I was thrilled to have my own baby bump.
I was surprised by the amount of morning sickness I felt with my second born. I didn’t feel ready to tell everyone at my corporate job that I was expecting since I had lost a baby to a miscarriage before, but the morning sickness was really intense. So I was obsessed with finding ways to curb the nausea there for awhile. Second and third trimesters were great. I was able to stay active and continue exercising through them.
Becoming a mom for the first time was unbelievable. Really. I think I was in shock when I brought my daughter up to my chest. The amount of love and wonder that washed over me in an instant was surprising. Honestly, I don’t know how to put it into words. I’ve never felt that kind of precious love for anyone before. Then, once I had my son, it was like my heart expanded to hold a whole other level of love. Again, it was amazing.
Being a mom with two kids now is an exercise in multi-tasking and patience most days! Ha! I love them dearly and going to the beach with them is my favorite! Trying to do bedtime routines, however, is like my kryptonite. Lol! It’s just not something we excel at in this household.
What are the most common signs that a baby is suffering from a food sensitivity through breastmilk?
There are a variety of issues that can clue you into a food sensitivity. I group them into 5 categories. Fussiness, Digestive Issues, Skin Issues, Disrupted or Irregular Sleep Issues, and Symptom Patterns.
For instance, a fresh newborn baby is not typically very fussy at all. The newborn baby really does just eat, sleep, and dirty diapers. So parents will want to take note if a newborn baby is fussing, crying, and seems to have a hard time getting comfortable to settle down. If the baby is older, a tell-tale sign can be that baby is more fussy after a feeding than before.
Digestive issues include gassiness, “explosive” diapers, green, mucousy or bloody stools are all a sign of an irritated digestive system. Eczema, hives, and rashes – particularly an “angry red” diaper rash are also common in food sensitive babies.
Disrupted or Irregular sleep patterns are often a result of the digestive issues causing pain in the tummy or burning reflux up baby’s throat. They have a very difficult time staying asleep in flat positions due if stomach acids are creeping back up.
I encourage parents to pay attention to the patterns they see in baby’s symptoms. A sudden and extreme symptom could be a reaction to a recently eaten food. Whereas a constant, never-ending symptom is a clue to look at the most common everyday items in mom’s diet.
What about once baby is eating solids? Do the symptoms of a food sensitivity change?
Most babies actually grow out of their initial sensitivities and do not develop full blown allergies. Some babies do not seem to react to certain foods in their mom’s diets but will react to it when introduced to it directly as a solid. This isn’t something that parents need to fear, but just be watchful of their children’s reactions to food. There are common guidelines and doctor approved recommendations of introducing one food and giving time before introducing another one. Again, you look for reactions in the same five categories as mentioned above. Babies are just little humans. Like us, their tummy’s can get upset, or their skin breaks out if we come in contact with a food item that doesn’t agree with our system.
What should a new mother do if they are worried their child is suffering from a food sensitivity through breastmilk?
Always talk to your pediatrician about your concerns. Don’t be afraid to clearly state your concerns and follow your gut instincts. Keeping a food & symptom journal will help both you and the doctor see any patterns related to food. A diet change can sound like an intimidating change to a mom with a new baby. However, if a tweak in your diet helps baby be healthier and happier, I guarantee mom & dad will be too!
How can people find out more about your support and coaching services?
I have a free breastfeeding support package that includes a food & symptom journal, symptom checklist, and a video going into more detail about baby’s symptoms. I also create allergy-free meal plans, recipes, and shopping lists for mom, so they don’t have to think about what to eat. For the pregnant moms, I pulled together all my best anti-nausea tips for them too. You can find links to all my resources on my website Radiant Life Consulting. Follow me on Facebook for live videos.
Veronica Lamb is a health coach for breastfeeding moms with food sensitive babies. She helps moms stop the constant crying and restore peace to their household. Meals plans, recipes, and shopping lists make it easy for moms to remove the Top 8 Allergens from their diet and get the nutrition they need without upsetting baby’s sensitive system. When not working or volunteering she can be found hiking or relaxing at the beach with her family in Hawaii.