Feeding Miss Daisy: Dealing with MSPI
My daughter, Daisy Claire, was born on April 14, 2012 at 11:22pm. She was perfect. Wide eyed and curious from the start she hardly cried at all and had a very relaxed and sunny disposition. She was (and still is) a world class snuggler and she latched on immediately and nursed like a pro from the very beginning. I was over the moon. Everything was so promising in the hospital that I was sure she would be just as easy and content when we got home. At first, I was right. We spent the first couple of weeks at home in a blissful mommy-daughter routine of sleeping, feeding, diapering and sleeping some more. I had lots of support from my family and things were going great.
Fast forward one and a half months into the future and things were not so great. Out of nowhere my little angel started crying. ALOT. She would cry almost all the time. She cried in the morning, she cried in the afternoon, and she cried at night. It got to the point that if she wasn’t nursing; she was crying. I was a mess. I had no idea what was wrong. I tried everything. I snuggled her, walked with her, tried to play with her, gave her baths, etc. Nothing worked. We knew it had gotten to the point that we needed to talk to the doctor one day when my husband came home at four thirty to find me in the floor snuggling a screaming baby and bawling my eyes out myself. We had been like that for almost four hours. I felt like such a failure but I agreed to go to the doctor because I didn’t want my baby to be hurting anymore.
Luckily, I have a great pediatrician and she listened very sympathetically to our issue and suggested a number of solutions. At first they thought she might just have gas but when we told her that she was almost never calm the doctor suggested that she might have MSPI. I had never heard of MSPI until that moment but soon I would know more about it than I ever really wanted to. MSPI stands for Milk Soy Protein Intolerance. It is a temporary condition caused by the inability to digest the proteins in milk or soy products. These undigested proteins cause painful inflammation of the intestines which is what leads to all the crying. A good basic outline of MSPI can be found here. http://www.completechildrenshealth.com/news/articles/what-is-mspi
The treatment for MSPI is simple; eliminate all dairy and soy products from the baby’s diet and presto! If you are formula feeding a dairy and soy free formula will do the trick. If you are breastfeeding it means removing all dairy and soy from your own diet. It takes about a week for the proteins to work their way through your system and for your baby to stop feeling the effects; but once they do…whoa. What a difference. I had a completely different baby. She was content, curious, and all smiles almost all the time. She went from needing constant comfort and snuggling to playing on her own for almost an hour at a time. It really was a complete 180. However, the diet can be rough. Dairy is pretty straightforward but soy proteins are hidden in places you wouldn’t expect. This http://www.mspimama.com/ website was a huge help to me when planning meals; but there are plenty of other resources out there. If your baby has MSPI don’t think that it means you can’t continue to breastfeed; it just means it will be a bit more of a struggle. Don’t give up. The diet only takes a little while to get used to and once you get accustomed to it it’s like second nature. Daisy and I still dairy and soy free and as happy as we can be!
Ashley is also sharing one of her favorite MSPI-diet friendly recipes
Pumpkin Coconut Soup
2 medium carrots, chopped
1 sweet pepper, chopped (red, orange, yellow, green whatever you like.)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 15oz can of pumpkin
1 14oz can of unsweetened lite coconut milk
1 14oz can of chicken or vegetable stock
2 TBSP brown sugar
1 fresh jalapeno seeded and finely chopped
½ tsp ground ginger
2 TBSP chopped cilantro
- Saute vegetables in oil until soft (some vegetable oils have soybean oil in them so watch out for that. Canola and coconut oil are both soy free.)
- In your soup pot combine the pumpkin, coconut milk, stock, ginger and brown sugar. (You could also use honey here if you aren’t into sugar.)
- Add your softened vegetables to the pumpkin mixture and bring to a boil.
- Simmer uncovered for ten minutes; add cilantro, salt and pepper to taste and voila!
This is one of my favorite recipes because it is so versatile. I’ve printed it here as we found it on the Better Homes and Gardens website but we have made tons of different versions of it. You can add any kind of protein you like and the vegetable possibilities are endless!! I’m also a huge fan of this recipe because it is so affordable; and sometimes dairy and soy free shopping can get pricey. It also keeps really well so make a huge batch and you’ll be good for days!