When breastfeeding, you don’t need to go to dietary extremes to learn what foods in your diet might be affecting your baby. Use this simple four step fussy food test:
Step 1: Make a Fuss Food Chart - List the foods you think may be problematic and the symptoms and behaviors associated with those foods, such as colicky episodes, bloating, severe constipation, diarrhea, painful night waking, restless sleep, red ring around baby’s anus
Step 2: Ask relatives about foods that cause them problems – Survey members on both sides of the family about foods that have bothered them, be sure to go beyond the common culprits of diary, wheat, egg whites, corn, nuts, soy, and cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, radish etc)
Step 3: Eliminate food suspects – One by one eliminate the suspect foods from your diet. (You may wish to eliminate all at once if your baby is really miserable) Be as objective as you possibly can. Pick out the most obvious signs and symptoms and see if they disappear. Keep in mind it can take 10-14 days to totally eliminate some foods from your system so you may need wait before seeing results. If you are eliminating a great number of foods from your diet consult a nutritionist to make sure you are staying healthy
Step 4: Challenge your results – When you think you have pinned down the problem food try eating it again, beginning with small amounts. If your baby’s symptoms reappear scratch this food from your diet for a few months until your baby is older. You may not need eliminate a food completely as your baby may simply have a heightened sensitivity.
The good news is that as your baby’s intestines and digestive system mature the need for eliminating fuss foods will diminish.