The kids are all asleep. Even Cora Beth. Well, Sabrina probably isn’t, but she is at the grandparents’ house.
Not like I don’t have enough to deal with right now, with the Postpartum Depression (PPD) and all, but a couple weeks ago I had 3 of the 5 children VEGA tested. I know that some of you are skeptical about naturopathic medicine – but I got pregnant, twice, when the medicine-based specialists told both my husband and I that we could not, would not be able to conceive. I am also a very empathetic person. Which means that if you mention that your tooth aches, mine will start. I don’t really have control of it – it just happens. Sometimes it’s good, then I can remember to pray for you pained tooth – or I can figure out just where to rub your shoulder when it hurts – but other times it adds to a heavy load on my body. Anyway, there hasn’t been a lot of research on gluten-free/casein-free diets for children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and I know that the kids are sensitive to some things at the very least (and knowing whether it’s because they don’t like it or because it may be making them feel ill is kind of a nice thing to know).
SO, I have been reading a lot of testimonials regarding FASD and the GF/CF diet, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet and other such diets. Since I have celiac disease and we already mostly eat gluten-free (I do, Claire does, Cora will), and because Cora is obviously sensitive to cow’s milk (and other things we know now), going GF/CF for the whole family was kind of my next step.
The testing was done. And how it works is everyone sits in the chair while the super sweet tester puts vials of different foods/chemicals on her machine and touches some special acupuncture point in the palm of the kid’s hand while the other hand holds this metal conductor. There is NO pain, just this very slight pressure of the testing. Then there is a measure of resistance between the body and the food/chemical. If the body tolerates it well, the noise the machine makes (in Sean’s terms) is happy, if it doesn’t, then it’s a sad noise – and depending on the sound – it’s either a * or a **.
The ** means that the tested child is very sensitive to that food and it should not be consumed. A * means that the child is sensitive and should avoid that food. But at the same time that we start avoiding these foods (aka today) we also start a “candida cleanse.” To create a healthier balance of good flora in our gut. The candida cleanse goes a bit further than avoiding the ** foods on each child’s list, no sugar, fructose, yeast, melon, FRUIT, alcohol, coffee (!!!), and other crap can be consumed. Once the candida cleanse is over (3 weeks) then fruit can be added back. At the end of the specified time period (depending on how high the child’s candida level was) they get re-tested and hopefully the ** and * foods will have been cleared (often the candida throw the body out of whack and cause foods to irritate us). If not, those are the ones that child will continue to avoid.
The trick is – well, there are VERY few foods that ALL of us can eat together. Basically about 15 foods we all tested okay for – of the ones tested. And, what is really tricky – the foods that I am intolerant to (soy for example) Cora isn’t but she is sensitive to almonds, while I am not. So I’m having to figure out exactly what I can consume and get her little belly less irritated. I would love to not smell like baby spit up SOONER rather than later.
Here is a quick list of the foods (not including fruits) that we will be basing our diets on for the next 3 weeks:
- butter (yes!)
- egg YOLKS
- green beans
- pistachio seeds
- pumpkin seeds
- hemp seed
Wow, that was 15, I guess I’m a pretty good guesser. Now, the thing is, I hate stevia. I hate it’s aftertaste, the kids do too. And the pea protein powder we have is sweetened with stevia. We will drink it. But it will be not very easy. AND, it’s SUMMER. Granted, it is WAY easier to control the children’s diets while I am in charge of ALL of their meals – and the purpose of doing it while we are at home is so that I can document any changes when we start adding foods back in – as well as when we start working on some of the immunization detoxification later in August.
But the challenge is really going to be meal planning.
I have made the Momma Jen Executive Decision that I will use fruit to the equivalent of ONE serving per child per day. I was specifically told to not cut my fruit intake (I am a nursing momma after all) but I will have to be very diligent in making sure the kids get their probiotics – especially in meals where I have used fruit. All of us are able to eat most of the fruit tested for. Peaches, bananas, pineapple, kiwi…which is handy, especially because I love love love peaches. And bananas and pineapple are great to add to a smoothie, or a stir fry…
I have made a second Momma Jen Executive Decision: there are some foods that only one of the children is sensitive to (Cora is sensitive to almonds, pecans, and lettuce; Sean is sensitive to goat milk, cashews, and quinoa; Savannah is sensitive to carrots and rice) so I may use that food once in awhile in a family meal and that kid will just have to deal with it or eat something slightly different. Like, for instance, goat feta in a spinach salad.
Plus, there is a plethora of vegetables that WEREN’T tested for, and I can use any of those – asparagus, kale, zucchini…
But this is the plan for now…
SPUD sells ground buffalo ($5.99/lb) and stewing buffalo ($9.99/lb)
Hemp milk for our smoothies/cereals
Bananas & pineapple for smoothies
Pineapple for stir fry
Bananas for baking breakfast muffins
An entire drawer in the fridge with cucumbers (it’s not uncommon for me to find any of my children eating a 12″ cucumber watching TV)
Fresh hummus for raw veggies (maybe each kid will have a snack baggie with veggies they can snack on?)
Brown Rice Crackers
Containers in the fridge with nuts and seeds that are marked with the names of those who can have them
Homemade mayonnaise using egg yolks, olive oil and lime? Hmmm will need to do some web searching for that one
And finding out what I can do with carob
And bacon once a week
And since I’m not really the one doing the cleanse (but I need to stay away from the things that Cora is sensitive too (chocolate, coffee, alcohol, dairy…) I will do my best to not eat the forbidden fruits in front of the children – and make sure I am getting enough calories to keep Cora growing like the champ she is. Although, if she quit spitting up so much, maybe I wouldn’t have to feed her quite so often…
SO, off to plan our breakfast menu for tomorrow. I’m pulling out my cookbooks, seeing what I can do with stevia and xylitol (they don’t feed the candida) and hoping breakfast goes better than dinner did.
Rice Pasta tossed with
Fresh shelled green peas in lots of
Buffalo Smokies (all natural, no nitrates) sliced diagonally and heated through with
Walla Walla Sweet Onion (caramelized with yellow summer squash and zucchini)