Young and Sick: Meet my Kids

It’s hard to believe that just last summer we were in the middle of several “minor” long term illnesses. I never would’ve thought our adventure would lead us to a changed food life. Last summer, I really didn’t believe eating differently would really change our life. I had heard about people being cured by changing their diets, but it seemed extreme and just plain crazy.

Ohhh, how naive I was!

I really honestly believed we were a healthy family. We never ate at McDonalds, we didn’t drink soda, I made sure my kids had fresh fruits and vegetables to eat, and I made a homemade dinner nearly every night of the week.

A typical day of food for my children was: Breakfast: banana, cheerios, milk; Lunch: Peanut butter and jelly sandwich on wheat bread, applesauce, cookie; Snack: Goldfish, grapes or Nilla wafers, raisins; Dinner: spaghetti, frozen green beans, garlic bread, a glass of milk, and dessert.

Pretty “normal” looking right? You’d think we’d all be the picture of health, right? WRONG! Food was our problem and NEW food was our cure.

Meet my 4 beautiful children:

Logan, age 3

Logan: The youngest of the bunch….although only by 9 minutes. He is an identical twin of Jacob. They just turned 3 in April. Logan’s issues began right after his first birthday. Hives appeared. Everywhere. All over his body. It would show up at random times and then disappear as quickly as they came. Sometimes they would completely cover his body from head to toe, other times it was just his legs or his face. The hives had no rhyme or reason. After several trips to the pediatrician, 3 different dermatologist (including a renowned pediatric dermatologist specialist), an allergist, and getting poked for allergy testing, blood work, and a biopsy, it was concluded that Logan had Urticaria (hives) from an “unknown source.” After 8 months of a Zyrtec/Zantec combination, he was finally cured. It wasn’t until looking back on the situation, we realized his healing occurred right around the time of our food changes. Either way, in over a year, he has not had any more outbreaks.

Jacob, age 3

Jacob: The older of the twins. Jacob’s issues also began right around his first birthday, although very different from his brothers. The problem began after he stopped nursing at 13 months. His problem was constipation. It started off very minor, and I thought this was just part of Jacob. He would not go for a few days and then would finally go after much straining, trying, and pushing. This went on for most of his second year of life. By the time he turned 2, it was a full-out daily struggle for him. At his worst point, he would wake up in the morning crying from pain, and would spend the next 7 hours trying to poop. (sorry if TMI!) I finally took him to the doctor, and realized this was NOT normal. His pediatrician sent us to go get an x-ray. The x-ray revealed that Jacob was severely constipated, and that it would take a person 2-3 months to “get this bad.” Since he was already eating a “healthy” diet (according to the doctor), she prescribed for him daily Miralax, and said “this was part of Jacob.” I believed it was MORE than just part of Jacob, and it didn’t make sense to me why a perfectly healthy toddler would be this constipated! I put him on Miralax 2 weeks before we started our new food routine. Once we started our new diet, I took him off the Miralax to see how he did. Within a month, he was a completely normal toddler. It wasn’t until we went on vacation (4 months later), eating our old Standard American Diet that his constipation came back.

Eating healthy, clean foods, Jacob is now a perfectly healthy 3 year old, who loves just about every fruit and veggie!

Julia, age 7

Julia: Oh, our sweet little Julia….She has battled with food and environmental allergies since she was born. She is now 7 years old. She is also ridden with eczema. Julia was on allergy shots by the time she was 3.5 years old. I took her in twice a week to get her shot. She was a very brave little girl. After a year of allergy shots, Julia was STILL on all seasonal allergy medicines, and her eczema was actually getting worse. I asked the doctor, who had promised this would all improve with the shots, and the doctor said “well, Julia just might have to stay on the medicine for the rest of her life.” We decided to stop her on allergy shots. About a year later, we met the nutritionist and it was a God-send for Julia. She explained that Julia would be an “easy fix” because she was so young, as long as she was open and willing to change what she ate. Julia hated her “itchy” skin and was very much on board with the food changes. We have noticed a HUGE change in Julia since eating a clean, healthy diet. Within a month (during high allergy season), the purple-ringed-allergy-eyes were completely gone! It took a little longer for her skin to clear up, which was about 2 months. Now, Julia is able to eat “sometimes foods” at Birthday parties and such and not have a reaction, like before. We give her lots of options of fresh fruits and vegetables but she is still able to eat a treat from time to time and maintain her healthy kid-glow.

Hannah, age 8

Hannah: Hannah is 8 year old, and our only child who has basically been completely healthy her entire life. She goes to the doctor maybe twice a year, and once is for her well-check. She is hardly ever sick. A completely healthy child. Hannah reminds me of myself as a child. I was very healthy and was hardly ever sick. However, by the time I was 26, I was sick with allergies, obese, had chronic tendonitis,  hypothyroidism, and just felt generally gross about myself. Real healthy, right? Was this where Hannah was heading? I have no idea, but I do know the food changes have impacted her life greatly. She was a slightly picky eater when it came to vegetables, but now she has learned to like things like sweet potatoes and spinach, and has a positive attitude about healthy eating.

I am excited to see how my children continue to grow and develop and Shawn and I are thankful we were taught how to properly feed our bodies to maintain a healthy quality of life. I hope this blog will be a source of inspiration for you. We are just a normal family, living a normal life.

Kelly

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4 thoughts on “Young and Sick: Meet my Kids

  1. I fully believe my youngest son’s eczema is caused by milk-based formula 😦 I cannot wait for him to be old enough to come off of it. My middle son flat out refused dairy milk about 4 months ago and his skin is much better (in fact, it looks great!). I am fine with them not having it!!

    • Yes, the nutritionist we met with said to avoid grain and dairy with eczema. It’s hard at first, but has made a huge difference in the eczema-stricken people in our house. (Milk, I believe, was the biggest problem!) Good luck! Have you thought about taking him off of milk-based formula? Is there other options besides soy?

      • I think soy is the only option 😦 I can’t BF so it was my only choice. At least I know we only have a few more months then he can drink almond or coconut milk once he is eating solids!

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