I'm wondering if some of you can give me some advice today, please?
As I shared in my last post, when we came home with Hailee and Harper two years ago, Hailee was ridiculously tiny and severely malnourished. We had every test under the sun done on her to find any hidden "issues" which may have accounted for just why she was as small as she was--other than sheer neglect. One of those tests were blood tests to pick up any allergies she may have. We tested twice.
Hailee's doctor in Virginia assured me repeatedly that everything was "normal" and there was nothing to be alarmed about.
As we have journeyed along, Hailee has definitely gained some weight--albeit extremely slowly. Some children who come home from Third World countries in similar conditions thrive very quickly. They often double in weight within weeks. That has not been the case with our Hailee. It has taken two years and four months for her to double in weight. She is now seven years and four months old, and she has just hit thirty pounds on the scale. She is very, very little.
For the last few weeks I have had a nagging feeling that something was just not right. Thankfully, we are blessed with the most amazing family doctor here. He specializes in functional medicine and gets to the root of why illness, lack of growth, or any other issue is happening, before just treating the condition with another medicine. I appreciate that a lot! We, as a family, are very conservative on medication. We eat healthily and use medication only when absolutely necessary.
Together with our doctor, we felt led to doing some very detailed allergy testing on Hailee. We felt confident that the test results would be very accurate based on his experience and the lab he uses.
Last Tuesday we got the results. As soon as I looked at the graphs on the paperwork our doctor gave me and saw the bright red lines, I knew!
Hailee is HIGHLY allergic to wheat, dairy and peanuts!
She is also in the "high" category for numerous other foods. Thankfully, nothing environmental.
The testing showed that she is so very deficient in Vitamin D and many other things--even with taking supplements every day.
Her body is completely unable to absorb good nutrition!
Oh my goodness! Being highly allergic to all three of those things has been wreaking havoc on her little body. It all makes perfect sense--her very dry skin, cracked nails, constant scratching, hair that will not grow, her body's inability to grow quicker. When the body cannot process nutrition properly, nothing works as it should!
So, I'm a mama on a mission. Everything must change, and Hailee is starting on a gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut-free diet. Yikes!
I'm wondering if those of you who have walked this road would be willing to share your expertise with me? I looked online and there is SO much information--it's hard to decipher where to even begin!
~~~ What are some excellent books?
~~~ Can you recommend good websites?
~~~ What has worked for your family when only one person is intolerant? Is there a way to simplify things with meal preparation when only one person is on a strict diet?
~~~ Where can I find great gluten-free/dairy-free recipes?
We have started Hailee on some high-quality supplements. The plan right now is to have her on a very strict diet for 3-4 months, and then to re-test and see what the results are.
As challenging as it is going to be, I am so excited to finally have some answers--to help Hailee become as healthy and as strong as she can be is such a blessing for me as her mother. I am so thankful to the Lord for bringing us to this point. I realize that this is not the easiest thing to deal with, but I am so up for the challenge! Anything to help our darling Hailee to heal and grow.
We have very realistic expectations regarding Hailee's growth. Having been confined to a crib for the first five years of her life, having had zero sunlight or adequate nutrition, we know that Hailee will more than likely never be the size of a normal seven year old. And that's okay. We only want her to be as healthy as she can possibly be.
I would greatly appreciate any advice you can give. Thanks!
So thankful that we finally know how to help our little precious.