Hey my Beautiful Blossoming Daffodils!
Thanks for all of your heart-warming comments and emails I got from my last post. Your kindness, love, and support really brought me to tears and I am so grateful for all of your encouragement. I know I may not be perfect (I released myself from my obsession with perfectionism), but that doesn’t mean I can’t live my life the best I can. The more strive to help others and lose myself in the service of others, I am better able to find myself. One thing I have learned is that some things take time. Getting an education takes time. Finding balance takes time. Healing takes time. I just have to keep pressing forward with steadfastness, striving to be the best me I can, and then I can come off conqueror.
I just finished up my second phase of ThisFitChick’s workout program. These past 4 weeks have consisted of 4 heavy weight sessions a week (two of which I combine into one because of my schedule) and with 3 HIT cardio sessions.The next 4 weeks will consist of 3 heavy weight sessions (one day arms, next day legs, and last day arms+abs) and 4 HIT cardio sessions (that involve either speed cardio on a machine or full body cardio moves to rev up the heart rate). I found this past week of workouts were starting to get a little easy for me (because I was getting stronger with each session), so I’m definitely ready to change things up with this next 4 weeks of challenges, starting with week 9.
Here are 3 things that made my week Fresh & Fantastic:
1. Tayla put together a beautiful and inspiring e-book on accepting and loving yourself as you are today. It’s filled with inspirational quotes and messages that have helped her in the past, and she put them all together in one place and is giving it out for free. If you want to grab a copy of it, go over to her blog and you can download it via Google Docs.
2. I had a green smoothie this morning – I felt absolutely amazing afterwards.
3. I have a guest post for you from Bianca Ridley, a leading nutritionist from Nutricia, a company that specializes in the delivery of advanced medical nutrition for the very young, the old and the sick. She wrote a fantastic guide (printed below) that discusses a cow’s milk allergy and shares ways parents can make the lives of their children with a cow’s milk allergy a little easier.
Cows’ Milk Allergy: A Parent’s Guide
Having a baby and being a parent is tough. Mums definitely have it tough too, as most of the things our baby wants are supplied by us: breast milk, cuddles, mummy-baby skin-to-skin, that kind of thing. When they are born, unless daddy is at home 24/7, we do almost everything to make sure our ‘mini me’ is healthy and happy.
Sometimes, things aren’t always quite perfect. If being pregnant wasn’t worrying enough, they then drop our fragile little bundles into the big scary world. Allergens are just one of the world’s evil tricks. While some children are predisposed, there is just no way of telling what they will react to. Among the most common allergies are dust, cows’ milk, pets and nuts.
Cows’ milk allergy can be a very difficult one to manage. Avoiding it as a drink helps, but if you pick up a packet of something in the supermarket and read the back, you might notice they have included milk in disguise. It is rarely referred to as ‘milk’, and instead you may find ‘hydrolyzed whey protein’ or ‘casein’ among the ingredients list. This is milk, hiding in plain sight.
When a child is diagnosed with CMA, it is often a huge relief. Symptoms include colic, reflux, constipation or diarrhea, and skin problems such as rashes or eczema. More extreme reactions can include breathing difficulties or even anaphylaxis. As a parent, having a name for the unsettled, screaming, refluxy baby that just won’t let you sleep can really help. So what next?
Since CMA is often detected in infancy, their diet must be reviewed by a dietician. Breastfed babies will usually continue to take mum’s breast milk while mum sticks to a restricted diet. Bottle fed babies, and some breastfed babies, may be prescribed medical nutrition such as a special medical formula which may help to ease symptoms. If reflux is one of the troubling symptoms, try feeding your baby their bottle with their head elevated, or for a breastfed baby, sit them up in a slight reclining position when they have finished their feed. The next challenge is weaning.
Milk-free weaning is possible, especially if you choose to cook for your child. Guidelines state that allergic children should not wean before six months as there is an allergy-preventing enzyme in their stomach that does not develop until this time. However, once you start, it isn’t as restricted as you may think! Pureed fruit and vegetables are perfect, and don’t have any extras in. If cooking meat dishes, avoid coupling them with creamy milk-based sauces, and opt for gravy or a tomato-based product instead. Experiment with different foods to see what your child enjoys.
If you don’t have time to cook all the time, there are some amazing organic food ranges which contain minimal ingredients and taste really good too (from experience). If you offer breakfast, porridges and even some baby rice products can contain milk, so make sure you check the packets.
Keeping a food diary and noting symptoms is very important when managing CMA. Sometimes, a child may react to a new food, or you may take a ‘dairy challenge’, usually on a doctor or dietician’s advice. Recognizing a reaction may help to distinguish new allergies, or, in the case of food challenges, can establish if a child has outgrown CMA.
If you notice a change in your child’s symptoms, or something new, be strong when talking to your healthcare professional. Many parents find that GPs are not necessarily the most understanding with CMA, as it is not something they usually diagnose. It may help to write things down for them.
Most children will outgrow it by age 4, while it may take until age 6 for some. While some may never outgrow it, there is good news: it is a completely manageable condition. By being vigilant, and encouraging your child to do the same when they are a little older, this allergy can be totally controlled. Finding the best way to cope is half the battle won.
Do you have a food allergy? How do you handle it?
Do you prefer E-books or paperback/hardback books?
What’s one thing that made your week fresh and fantastic?
With lots of hugs,