Right after Colin’s first birthday we decided to do a soy trial, through my breastmilk, to see if Colin’s allergy was still present. Both his doctor and allergist said he may have outgrown it and we too wondered if the bulk of our food challenges could possibly be unnecessary. I hadn’t had eaten any soy since Colin was less than two months old.
I began on a Sunday afternoon, drinking soy milk. The first few days I enjoyed some wonderful decaf lattes with soy milk and we ate a meal with soy sauce in it. I also ate some bread containing soybean oil and soy lecithin. Yes, I went all out. I figured if I had a shot at soy I was going to make the most of the opportunity. Also,with all that soy, it would probably be very clear whether or not it was a problem for Colin. Since Colin usually reacts 1-3 days after I ingest something, we figured by Wednesday night that we would see if it was still an allergy. Wednesday went fine. Thursday went fine. I started getting very very excited and started making mental lists of all the things I was going to eat. Friday he had a poo that was normal for a baby and we declared victory! I think I even texted some people our good news. This was huge! But then… Saturday came.
Colin was super crabby on Saturday and not himself. Saturday night he had diarrhea all night long. For the next 4-5 days it continued every time I fed him. I kept monitoring him for dehydration and feeding him whenever he looked interested. Breastfeeding kept the dehydration at bay but his diapers got worse. I won’t go into anymore details but it was exactly like when he was an infant. I was really scared we were going to start seeing blood again. Thankfully it didn’t get that far.
Colin continued having the intestinal distress for over two weeks. He wasn’t a happy guy and I wasn’t a happy mommy. Having to change a baby is hard enough, changing a feisty 1-year-old whole can flip and roll like an angry crocodile is a whole different ballgame. Getting up several times night for a clean diaper meant Colin and I were more sleep deprived than usual. I was so relieved when things finally settled down. Colin started to feel better and my happy little guy reappeared.
So obviously soy is out. Really out. Looking back at the trial I don’t know if it took Colin longer to react to soy than other foods or if what seemed to be a delayed response had something to do with the level of soy protein in my body or his body reaching some level. I know other moms have said that they often see reactions in their children upon repeated exposures to a problem food, that it seems to take time to build up in their body before a reaction appears. In the future I will trial other foods for longer than 4-5 days before declaring them a pass. We won’t try soy for another year I would guess. By then Colin will most certainly be weaned but we won’t feed him anything with any kind of soy in it for a long time.
If you’ve ever had experience with delayed reactions, building reactions or reactions that happened after repeated exposures to a food I’ve love to hear about it!