Food is one of the human body’s most basic needs – it is imperative for a child’s growth and development. But, what happens when something so basic a need as food becomes a source of discomfort for your little one?
Unfortunately, some babies experience a sensitivity to the proteins found in milk. From birth to about 6 months of age the digestive system is still developing and sometimes has difficulty breaking down the large size of milk proteins. As a result of a milk protein sensitivity, a baby can experience many uncomfortable and unpleasant symptoms. Breast feeding moms take note: if you’re eating dairy, your child is too!
It’s important to remember: a milk protein sensitivity is not the same as a milk allergy. A true allergy to milk proteins is very rare. Only about 3 to 4 percent of young babies experience an allergy to milk, which if not treated can result in life threatening symptoms.
When the body has difficulty breaking down the size of milk proteins, several symptoms can occur, including:
The symptoms of a milk allergy include vomiting, anaphylaxis, hives, swelling, wheezing, and diarrhea. If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. Unlike a sensitivity to milk, which is not life threatening, a milk allergy can result in death.
Keep in mind: there’s not one test that can diagnose a milk protein sensitivity. In most cases, a milk protein sensitivity is diagnosed through an elimination diet. Your child’s doctor will recommend eliminating certain food items, like dairy, from his diet and/or your diet if you’re breast feeding.
If your child’s doctor is recommending an elimination diet, you can expect this to last for about 2 weeks as milk proteins can remain in the system for just as long. Once you have eliminated certain foods from your baby’s diet (and yours, if you’re breast feeding), you’ll slowly begin to reintroduce these foods to watch for any of the signs or symptoms associated with a sensitivity.
If your child’s doctor believes your little guy has a milk protein sensitivity, he or she may recommend switching to a formula with a hydrolyzed protein. A hydrolyzed protein is a protein that has been broken down into a smaller, easier to digest size. My Organic Formula carries two organic formulas with hydrolyzed proteins:
In addition to hydrolyzed proteins, HIPP HA Combiotik® contains probiotic fibers and LCP oils, which help support brain and nerve development.
In addition to smaller milk proteins, HIPP Special Comfort infant formula is made with a reduced lactose content and easy to digest fats.