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Thread: 4yo son sick - advice? page 2

  1. #11
    Annika's Avatar
    Annika is offline Senior Member
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    Blood in the stool is a serious symptom. You mentioned that he sometimes has red stool but you aren't sure if it's blood. Be sure to mention this to any doctor you see, and they can give you a test to do at home to determine if there is blood, or you can bring a stool sample in with you. I agree that it sounds like you need to see another doctor. Long-term diarrhea should not be ignored, and bloody diarrhea especially! He should have testing for colitis & Crohn's.
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  2. #12
    Shannon J's Avatar
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    Actually I really do like his doctor. I think I haven't been clear enough with him about what this condition is like because I myself feel that many time things like this just go away on their own. I take blame for this going on so long. I believe this is the son that was diagnosed with 'toddler's diarrhea' when he was younger, which is what sounds like the twins mentioned above may have had and is common and does go away on its own. If it was him then this has gone on much longer than I was recognizing. Nonetheless, here we are. I canceled the apt for tomorrow because I asked if he'd need to be eating wheat for the testing to work and the dr said yes. So we had celebratory pizza tonight, without cheese, and we'll have wheat for two weeks and then go in for an apt. I'm planning to wait a week or so and then let him have dairy also...unless there are big changes for him with the reintroduction of wheat and then I'm not sure what my plan will be. I'll let you know what comes of this...and ask more questions I'm sure in the meantime. I really appreciate folks taking the time to give input and help me think of reasons this may be happening..

    Re: the possibility of blood in his poop. Yes that does worry me. If it is blood it is bright colored and I *think* that means it isn't as bad as if it were dark colored. But I do look forward to getting it tested so I know for sure.

  3. #13
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    prib81 is offline Senior Member
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    Shannon,

    I am now 28, have had serious GI issues for the better part of 8 years, and had something as a kid (they thought Crohn's at first, but maybe ulcerative colitis). I have been primal for about 5 months and pretty strict for the last 3 and finally feel my colon is healing. I have found the following, all through my n=1 experimentation:

    - I take Betaine HCl tablets in addition to digestive enzymes with every meal. HCl must be dosed carefully, as too much can cause stomach problems.
    - Cow dairy is no good for me, with the exception of pastured butter. I drink a lot of goat milk and it gives me no issues aside from a bit of gas (which I am amused by). I do take Lactaid with it.
    - Aside from the goat milk, the closer I am to carnivorous, the better I feel. Grass-fed meats are the best. I have arrived at this conclusion on my own, and it seems many in the Paleosphere with a history of GI problems agree.
    - Any vegetables I do eat must be cooked well, and served with lots of butter. Raw vegetables are hard to digest.
    - Garlic and onions are different - they seem to have therapeutic effects, but I still cook them.
    - Moderate amounts of potatoes seem to be fine. Waxy ones (Yukon gold, etc.) are preferred and, once again, must be fully cooked.
    - Any grains at all are bad for the gut, with the exception of white rice (in extreme moderation). The only time I have this is with Chinese food.
    - Nuts don't do well for me either.
    - I have been supplementing with Dr. Ohhira's Probiotics 12 Plus capsules. I chew on the capsule before swallowing. The taste is surprisingly pleasant.
    - I have been seeing an acupuncturist for a little over a month, who is focusing on GI and lung pathways. She also prescribed Chinese herbs for digestion.
    - I have begun taking vitamin C and D3.

    The upshot of all this? After 8 years of GI issues ranging from soft stools to watery diarrhea (but never "normal"), I have begun having normal BMs consistently, for most of the last month. In addition, I have begun gaining weight after losing over 1/3 of my body weight over those eight years (150 -> 95). Patience is crucial; healing takes time. Your son is quite young and will probably bounce back quicker, but don't give up on something that doesn't give results in a week or two.

    Lastly, I will say the following with the caveat that I am not a parent myself. A bit of "tough love" is probably in order. If you want to try something new diet-wise, you may have to give him the option to eat it or go hungry. Since you mention losing weight is good, I don't see this being a problem. It'll also introduce him to the concept of intermittent fasting at an early age .

  4. #14
    Shannon J's Avatar
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    I'm happy to hear that your belly is greatly improving. I hope that will all this reading I'm doing it will inspire me to stick to PB when I restart again (tomorrow?). When I first started PB I went into it full force and after a few weeks of having meat daily my family sat me down for an intervention. We had been vegetarian before that, for 20 years. So now we are doing it half-assed, getting used to more meats and veggies and very little sugar. I try to have a better diet then the rest of them because none of my family really believes in PB but I will eat several slices of fresh bread slathered in butter when given the chance.

    On to my son...I want to make sure it is clear that I didn't start back with wheat because he had a hard time without it, but because he has to eat it consistently before he can be tested for celiacs. The dr had said he needed to eat it daily for 2 weeks, I just heard back from someone at celiac.org who said it needed to be for 3 weeks. My son actually did amazingly without wheat and dairy. He fully believed that it hurt his belly (because I told him so) and so while we tried to keep dairy and wheat out of the house at all, when we did have something he couldn't eat he would be pretty ok with it. But he was delighted last night when I said he could have wheat again.

    On to tough love. I do agree with you and besides my freaking out the first week it all went well. I can see if this has to become a way of life for him/us we WILL be able to survive. And even if it isn't wheat causing his problem I know now he can get by with less wheat and be better off for it. It can be hard to do 'tough love' regarding food with adopted children. Both my little ones have food issues. This son's only issue seems to be that he eats SO much, but he does it happily. My other 4yo will chop off your hand if you try to eat something he thinks might be his. After 3 years it is only marginally better. Long ago he had a 45 min tantrum, clawing at my face, because I liked my thumb which accidentally touched his soup broth. That was HIS broth. It's a tricky balance when you involve the emotions of prenatal and first year of life malnutrition.

    Thanks for listing what it is you have done to improve your own health. I'm going to copy out the specific ideas on this thread to refer to over time as we figure this out.

  5. #15
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    Shannon,
    You're right that bright red blood is less of a concern. That means it's probably from a small tear that is occuring from the diarrhea and nothing more. Hopefully the test will confirm that he is not actually bleeding internally. Since you are doing wheat now and you have to until the test maybe you can give him a little relief by following (as much as he'll allow) the BRATT diet with him. It's Bananas, rice, applesauce, tea, and toast. I guess these foods are least likely to cause stomach upset so you can try that in the meantime if he's having worse issues. poor guy let us know how it all turns out.

  6. #16
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    Blood tests for celiac are unreliable in children, and more so when he has been off gluten for a while. It's worth getting him tested, but if it's negative, don't trust it. I agree on the exclusion of dairy and gluten, but this has to be total. A good primal diet with organ meats will ensure he's getting the nutrition he needs. Kids' guts heal quickly once the offending food items are removed.

  7. #17
    Shannon J's Avatar
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    Hmm, I'd love to know what percentage false negatives the test gives...

    He started eating wheat again and there was no effect on the diarrhea. But this weekend we let him have dairy back and there was a big downward turn. We'll keep the wheat until the doctors visit but be even more careful about dairy for now. I know his probiotics say they contain milk (though I can't find anything in the ingredients that looks milk-like to me...is it just the lactobacillus etc? I need to look up what to be careful about with 'hidden dairy' in products. And start making bread for him.

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