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Thread: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

  1. #1
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    Jul 2012
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    Default 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    Hi,
    I have an 18 mo little guy who seems to be addicted to cow's milk (whole). His eating of "real food" goes in spurts, but he often only wants fruit, meat and cheese. He's quite picky. But he looooooves his milk and begs for it all the time. He usually has an 8 oz cup in the morning, 8 oz at lunch and 8 oz before bed, plus some during the day when he asks. He seems to use it to calm himself, especially.

    The problem is that he has been dealing with some eczema It doesn't seem to bother him, but he gets dry, rough patches. The latest one looked like ringworm but his doctor said it's eczema and I can put Eucerin or a steroid cream on it. I'm doing the Eucerin, which seems to help, but he breaks out from time to time in a little red, prickly looking rash. Anyway, I'm thinking it could be a symptom of dairy sensitivity, as I was also sensitive to dairy as a child. But how do I go about cutting down his milk? Is there a substitute that I could gradually mix in? I've looked at almond, rice, etc,. but none of them seem to have the nutrients of whole cow's milk.

  2. #2
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    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    Sorry I cannot help with what the best substitute would be, that is not my area. However I am pretty sure that if the issue is a dairy sensitivity you want to avoid soy as well.

    Is baby still nursing?

    Here is what I am thinking. 24 ounces a day seems like it is a LOT of cow milk (or any one milk, or even any one food of ANY kind) for a 18 month old. (Well, except human breastmilk-and even then it would be a lot I guess, although if we were talking human breastmilk it would not worry me at all.) My 10 YEAR old cow milk lover drinks less than half that per day. What about reducing the amount baby gets each time?

    His eating of "real food" goes in spurts, but he often only wants fruit, meat and cheese.
    You also might say "when baby is in the mood, he eats alot, and he eats a great variety-cheese, meat AND fruit!"

    My point is, it is typical for toddlers to eat sporadically and not eat a huge variety and not each much at all. Is baby healthy overall?

  3. #3
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    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    He isn't nursing anymore. I forgot to mention that he often sleeps through the night, but if he wakes up, he demands milk before he'll go back to sleep. I've tried watering it down, but at a certain point he notices and cries for milk. I should have "toughed it out," but when he's working on a molar he doesn't eat much at all and I figure he must wake up hungry in the night. So, aside from the 24 oz during the day he often gets an additional 6 or so oz at night.

    He's very healthy overall, in the 85th percentile for both height and weight, and rarely gets sick. I'm concerned about his food variety because he rarely eats vegetables, unless it's baby food sweet potatoes or carrots, and doesn't eat many grains other than occasional crackers and bread. But my main concern is the eczema and rashes he is getting. I'm thinking my doctor is fairly old-school and wouldn't necessarily think it was a reaction from milk and would rather prescribe a steroid cream or something. I'd rather be sure it's not milk but am not sure how to "break the addiction."

  4. #4
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    Oct 2009
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    I would be concerned about all the cow's milk bc of the risk of anemia. You may just have to set a limit. My daughter has a limit on how much dairy I give her bc it constipates her and she has to really be encouraged to drink enough water.
    Nursed my sweet daughter 3 years, 3 mos.

  5. #5
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    My guess is that you keep a lot of milk in the house, right? Maybe a couple of gallons at a time? What I'm thinking is, what if you suddenly had a lot less milk in the house, and your LO knew it? At the beginning of the day, you could show him just how much milk you had- maybe keep it in a "special" pitcher that is just for his milk- and then, over the course of the day you would dole it out and he would see the level in the pitcher dropping lower and lower. And eventually it would be all gone... At that point, he'd have no choice but to drink water, which would require a certain amount of toughness on your part, if he suddenly starts screaming for more milk. But I think that kids sometimes understand quantities better than we credit them for, and if your LO could see how much he was getting in a day, maybe he would manage his intake in a different way. IDK, worth a shot?
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  6. #6
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    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    So basically, your child is drinking ~ 30 ounces of milk a day? Frankly I am surprised he eats ANYTHING else.

    I am sorry I don't have more suggestions about breaking the habit. My guess is he has somehow turned milk into a comfort thing. I like mommals idea and would be very curious if it worked.

    I also suggest the book My Child Won't Eat. It is a great book (imo) especially for when paretns are concerend about how much or what their child is eating.

  7. #7
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    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: 18 month old milk addict but possible allergy

    Thanks for all the good suggestions. I've been trying to feed him milk only if he asks after he has eaten, and have started giving him less at nap and bed. After he finishes his bedtime sippy we brush his teeth and then he can have water. He's thrown a couple mini-fits but nothing like it used to be when he wanted milk in the night! His getting to the age of understanding stuff (like the milk is all gone) is probably helping, too.

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