Wednesday, February 20, 2008

There could be something to this

This is day four of our dairy-free trial and I'm actually hopeful this time out. Gus has been, moreso today, more 'tuned in' and aware of what's going on around him. First thing today, I said, 'good morning' to him and he responded the first time. I normally either get no response or have to repeat myself a few times. Then, and this was the heart sweller, he made eye contact with me...and held it for several seconds with no prompting. That is extremely rare!

He's been active today, but not wildly out of control, at least not until his grandparents arrived, but I attribute that to general excitement and nothing more. His sister is just as out of control.

Another example of his being more alert and connected to his surroundings: we were playing a computer game with Mama, and Gus chose to play with his hand-held game. No problem; he'd been asking for it for days. But even while he was involved with his own game, he became curious about what we were doing and kept asking what was going on in our game. He wasn't completely immersed in his own thing. Eventually he came to join us.

He's been more conversational and less perseverative/questioning than is typical.

So, my conclusion is that these things could be for any number of reasons, but I have good reason to believe that cutting the dairy may be helping. The real test will be when he goes back to school. I don't intend to mention the change to his teachers because I want to see if they notice any difference.

Cross your fingers for us.

Oh, and anyone who has gone this route and could offer any advice, it would be very appreciated.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Trying Dairy-free

We've tried all-natural and low sugar diets with the slightest success and a big increase in our grocery bill. So they've more or less stuck. We tried gluten-free for a week and it was just too hard at the time and not cost effective. It wasn't a long enough trial run to have seen any results, but I'm not inclined to go there again until finances are much better.

So we're going to give dairy-free a go. Just for a week. From what I've heard if Gus has any kind of dairy allergy or sensitivity or allergy, we should start to see a reaction within a week. Also, since my daughter and husband refuse to drink milk, we're a good portion of the way toward being dairy-free anyway. I've had to find ways to get her an appropriate level of calcium without drinking milk. Cheese is going to be the real challenge. And mayonnaise. My kids both consume cheese in huge quantities. And I have tried to slip in dairy free or soy cheeses before to see how viable a dairy-free diet might be if we ever decided to try it. They hate that stuff. I may be able to get Gus to drink rice milk if I go for the unflavored kind. He's gotten accustomed to drinking skim milk and the consistency is close.

We're doing it this week because he's off from school so I'll have a chance to really see if there's any change.

I've also been doing some looking into this theory of yeast overgrowth in connection to spectrum disorders. While I'm not sure I totally buy it, I'm doing some research. I need to have a chat with our dietitian this week. So I'll have some more info on that shortly, I hope.

In the meantime, if anyone out there has advice on how to make picky little cheese lovers dairy free, I'd sure appreciate the input!