1

votes

Toddlers' Diarrhea

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 03, 2012 at 8:29 PM

Hi,

I am currently low-carb gluten free and aspiring to be paleo, I have been spending a lot time researching but due to budgetary restraints and having an enormously busy life I have had a few failed attempts at becoming paleo.

My children are not currently paleo as I am still in very early stages of experimenting with my own diet, I am frightened to cut things out their diet whilst they are still so small. (5 and 20 months)

My toddler has had about 12 months of diahrrea, i have been to the doc's loads of times but they have fobbed me off, we had months of screaming all day and all night, head banging the floor, really naughty behaviour, he is constantly thirsty, has about 4 full nappies every day, partially digested food, really greasy and really foul smelling. He eats loads of food, I can't fill him up and he's constantly thirsty but he doesn't seem to be getting bigger. I finally got a referral to a peadiatrician today who has diagnosed "Toddlers Diahrrea" apparently he will grow out of it by the time he's four.

Can anyone offer any advice or experience please?

Thanks. Michelle

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

thanks I will check that out...

B23318c968ac589b87131d5b489d6e16

(1294)

on April 17, 2012
at 05:29 PM

I am not a Physician, I am a Pediatric Acupuncturist and Licensed Midwife. Thanks for the heads up about the rules.

Bbb65dfde2b925e334048eb6438b3950

on April 16, 2012
at 11:27 AM

If he is truly celiac he needs to be tested before you take him off wheat, otherwise you might not get a positive result. It is important to get a diagnosis with celiacs so that you have evidence to present to hid daycare provider and later to his school. They will need it to get the extra money for gluten free food.

Bbb65dfde2b925e334048eb6438b3950

on April 16, 2012
at 11:24 AM

It is horrible that your physician is not better informed. Take a look at this paper: http://adc.bmj.com/content/97/1/84.long If you can not see it, email me at [email protected] and I will send it to you. It addresses "toddler diarrhea" as a diagnostic term and how it is imperative to rule out several possible causes before just stamping the "toddler diarrhea" diagnosis on the child an tell the parents to wait it out. Your child is obviously distressed.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 04, 2012
at 06:28 PM

thanks Clear-eyed Sjy I hope we get to the bottom of it soon (no pun intended) and I certainly won't be waiting until he's four!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 04, 2012
at 06:26 PM

Thanks both for yoyur supportive answers, she has done a full blood screen, my grandmother died of chron's disease and I have an autoimmune disorder linked to chrons, plus my mum has a really bad acid reflux and a first cousin is celiac, both dad and I are gluten intolerent so it would be naive to think he isn't... he has been ill for the last few days and currently on antibiotics, he'd not eaten for the 24 hours before so I don't know if that will affect the gluten test but we shall see... thanks again. Michelle

4a7929c2aa05bf11349d9e55cb542d47

(646)

on April 04, 2012
at 04:16 PM

I'd add that those baby/toddler foods that are pure fruits/veggies are super pasteurized to be shelf stable. They're not the worst food to eat, but the nutrition level isn't great. Make sure you're also feeding some nutrient dense foods: meat, maybe organ meat, eggs (if they are tolerated). Homemade broth suggestion is good too. stick to home prepared, from scratch foods, maybe even single, non-mixed foods until you're able to isolate the triggers. Keep a diary.

5fbdb4d1266cfbd9dd36b4c219bbdb96

(749)

on April 04, 2012
at 01:22 PM

I would definitely pursue getting him tested. It really sounds like it could be an issue, and for him to get a correct test, he needs to have gluten in the diet. We just went through this with my daughter, so I know it is hard. I will say that a Mom/Parent's instinct is rarely wrong, so if you think something is wrong - push for more from your doctor. I would ask for a referal to a gastroentologist who is more familiar with issues. It definitely sounds like something he is suffering with, which must be so hard for you as well. Good luck - I really hope you can get answers!

0ad4ed16f0afccc544f92e51945482f7

(55)

on April 04, 2012
at 08:30 AM

Good that your doc will test for celiac - if you are considering an elimination diet, remember he has to be currently eating gluten for the test to be accurate.

93f44e8673d3ea2294cce085ebc96e13

(10502)

on April 04, 2012
at 07:49 AM

@Jasmine -- are you medical professional? If so, there are special rules about that on PaleoHacks: See http://paleohacks.com/faq#axzz1r3WHPTBr: "In the interest of transparency and credibility, anyone publicly claiming to be a credentialed physician must also publicly provide identity info on their profile page. e.g. link to their website, LinkedIn etc etc. If a physician wants to remain anonymous (and that is well within their rights), then they must not use "Dr.", "Doc", "MD" anywhere in their user-name."

93f44e8673d3ea2294cce085ebc96e13

(10502)

on April 03, 2012
at 11:06 PM

Can you go to a private doctor?

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on April 03, 2012
at 10:49 PM

I agree with this response, +1

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 10:19 PM

Just found this, thought it might be helpful: http://www.ibs-solutions.co.uk/phdi/p1.nsf/supppages/ibs?opendocument&part=3

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:55 PM

possibly i will look into that!!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:54 PM

thanks, it does seem a long time to wait, i will keep searching.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:53 PM

I don't know if this is a possibility, but isn't it a little easier to be seen by a specialist in France? Maybe time for a little vacation over/under the channel.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:51 PM

Certain food intolerances have a genetic component, maybe try switching him over to what works for you for a bit.

Medium avatar

(12379)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:49 PM

yay for mama bear - i love being mama bear! My aunt's nickname is 'mama grizz' because she was so fierce when it came to my 4 cousins

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:46 PM

oh the doc also said we can give him medication to firm up his stools but it's not really to cure him, it won't do that it is more for your convenience...! what's that all about??

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:45 PM

hi, thanks for your response... yes we're in the UK it's really hard to get seen... I've been waiting three months for an appointment. We have had such a hard time with him, he is obviously distressed and not growing as well as he should. Both hubby and I have food issues and no one will help us at all, the doc's just rubbish the claims as stress-related IBS and prescribe us pills to combat the pain... but if we don't eat the food we don't get the pain??? very strange, there doesn't seem to be rhyme or reason to what causes us problems most of my diagnosis is from me and reading on here!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:41 PM

thanks for your response, I am in the UK and it seems here doctors aren't prepared to consider that food is the issue... It seems like its the same old IBS coverall story/fob off, we don't know what it is so we'll call it this... I shall certainly harness my mama bear... I'm definitely considering the fructose issue and I will have a look for a naturopath.. thanks again

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:38 PM

tended... and he does seem to be uncomfortable.. in a morning he is completely inconsolable until I can get a pint of juice or water down him and two bowls of breakfast...

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:37 PM

hi thanks, the doc said she would screen for celiac as I have a first cousin who is celiac. Both my hubby and I have been screened and both came back negative even though we both feel better eating gluten free. We do seem to be able to cheat with no ill effect but within a few weeks eating gluten the symptoms return. I know something is triggering it but not sure what it is... I had a jacket potato the other day (safest option!) stomach ballooned, felt sick and lethargic in minutes but no gluten in sight.. He is small both hubby and I are quite tall he's currently on the 9th centile,belly dist

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 08:51 PM

GAPS diet jinx! ;)

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on April 03, 2012
at 08:43 PM

That's awful. I'm sorry you've been going through this. It does sound like food intolerances. Why not do a strict elimination diet?

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7 Answers

8
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on April 03, 2012
at 09:35 PM

Cutting stuff out of his diet isn't going to harm him because it sounds like he isn't even digesting his food in the first place. That's serious. I'm guessing you live in England? I've heard it's hard to see a specialist there, but you should keep trying to see a gastroenterologist. You should ask for a stool culture and to be screened for celiac, lactose AND fructose intolerance. I am just amazed every day by doctors that don't do these basic things and I remember suffered severely with salmonella when my doctor said I just had IBS.

In the meantime, the focus need to be on stopping the diarrhea. There is great grain/gluten-free toddler/baby food out there now. Fruit purees, particularly apple, banana, and pumpkin, can help slow things down and prevent diarrhea. Broth also might help heal the gut. Then slowly introduce simple meats and eggs into the diet.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:51 PM

Certain food intolerances have a genetic component, maybe try switching him over to what works for you for a bit.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:45 PM

hi, thanks for your response... yes we're in the UK it's really hard to get seen... I've been waiting three months for an appointment. We have had such a hard time with him, he is obviously distressed and not growing as well as he should. Both hubby and I have food issues and no one will help us at all, the doc's just rubbish the claims as stress-related IBS and prescribe us pills to combat the pain... but if we don't eat the food we don't get the pain??? very strange, there doesn't seem to be rhyme or reason to what causes us problems most of my diagnosis is from me and reading on here!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:46 PM

oh the doc also said we can give him medication to firm up his stools but it's not really to cure him, it won't do that it is more for your convenience...! what's that all about??

4a7929c2aa05bf11349d9e55cb542d47

(646)

on April 04, 2012
at 04:16 PM

I'd add that those baby/toddler foods that are pure fruits/veggies are super pasteurized to be shelf stable. They're not the worst food to eat, but the nutrition level isn't great. Make sure you're also feeding some nutrient dense foods: meat, maybe organ meat, eggs (if they are tolerated). Homemade broth suggestion is good too. stick to home prepared, from scratch foods, maybe even single, non-mixed foods until you're able to isolate the triggers. Keep a diary.

Bbb65dfde2b925e334048eb6438b3950

on April 16, 2012
at 11:27 AM

If he is truly celiac he needs to be tested before you take him off wheat, otherwise you might not get a positive result. It is important to get a diagnosis with celiacs so that you have evidence to present to hid daycare provider and later to his school. They will need it to get the extra money for gluten free food.

6
5fbdb4d1266cfbd9dd36b4c219bbdb96

on April 03, 2012
at 08:58 PM

Has he been tested for Celiac's (i.e. Gluten intolerance)? It sounds like he has a lot of symptoms of gluten intolerance...however, you should really get him tested before you do an elimination diet. If you eliminate gluten and they test for it, it will come back negative. I would push for the testing.

Even if it is not, it definitely sounds like a food allergy/intolerance.

Is he small? Struggle to gain weight? Does he get a distended belly? Does he seem uncomfortable?

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:37 PM

hi thanks, the doc said she would screen for celiac as I have a first cousin who is celiac. Both my hubby and I have been screened and both came back negative even though we both feel better eating gluten free. We do seem to be able to cheat with no ill effect but within a few weeks eating gluten the symptoms return. I know something is triggering it but not sure what it is... I had a jacket potato the other day (safest option!) stomach ballooned, felt sick and lethargic in minutes but no gluten in sight.. He is small both hubby and I are quite tall he's currently on the 9th centile,belly dist

5fbdb4d1266cfbd9dd36b4c219bbdb96

(749)

on April 04, 2012
at 01:22 PM

I would definitely pursue getting him tested. It really sounds like it could be an issue, and for him to get a correct test, he needs to have gluten in the diet. We just went through this with my daughter, so I know it is hard. I will say that a Mom/Parent's instinct is rarely wrong, so if you think something is wrong - push for more from your doctor. I would ask for a referal to a gastroentologist who is more familiar with issues. It definitely sounds like something he is suffering with, which must be so hard for you as well. Good luck - I really hope you can get answers!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:38 PM

tended... and he does seem to be uncomfortable.. in a morning he is completely inconsolable until I can get a pint of juice or water down him and two bowls of breakfast...

0ad4ed16f0afccc544f92e51945482f7

(55)

on April 04, 2012
at 08:30 AM

Good that your doc will test for celiac - if you are considering an elimination diet, remember he has to be currently eating gluten for the test to be accurate.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 04, 2012
at 06:26 PM

Thanks both for yoyur supportive answers, she has done a full blood screen, my grandmother died of chron's disease and I have an autoimmune disorder linked to chrons, plus my mum has a really bad acid reflux and a first cousin is celiac, both dad and I are gluten intolerent so it would be naive to think he isn't... he has been ill for the last few days and currently on antibiotics, he'd not eaten for the 24 hours before so I don't know if that will affect the gluten test but we shall see... thanks again. Michelle

6
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on April 03, 2012
at 08:48 PM

Have the whole family go completely gluten and dairy-free for 2 weeks.

It won't hurt anyone for such a short time and you should see changes in your toddler pretty quickly if his diet is the problem. Lots of gluten-free foods in stores and recipes available for free on the web.

Check out the GAPS diet for more information.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 08:51 PM

GAPS diet jinx! ;)

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on April 03, 2012
at 10:49 PM

I agree with this response, +1

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

thanks I will check that out...

3
B23318c968ac589b87131d5b489d6e16

(1294)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:47 PM

I am a pediatric care provider. That is definitely not something I would ever recommend, to see if he grows out of it by 4. Too much damage can be done to his intestines if you wait. Keep searching until you find an answer and in the meantime cut out gluten and dairy.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:54 PM

thanks, it does seem a long time to wait, i will keep searching.

93f44e8673d3ea2294cce085ebc96e13

(10502)

on April 04, 2012
at 07:49 AM

@Jasmine -- are you medical professional? If so, there are special rules about that on PaleoHacks: See http://paleohacks.com/faq#axzz1r3WHPTBr: "In the interest of transparency and credibility, anyone publicly claiming to be a credentialed physician must also publicly provide identity info on their profile page. e.g. link to their website, LinkedIn etc etc. If a physician wants to remain anonymous (and that is well within their rights), then they must not use "Dr.", "Doc", "MD" anywhere in their user-name."

B23318c968ac589b87131d5b489d6e16

(1294)

on April 17, 2012
at 05:29 PM

I am not a Physician, I am a Pediatric Acupuncturist and Licensed Midwife. Thanks for the heads up about the rules.

3
6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 08:48 PM

If you have any naturopaths near you they might be more willing to test further. You could also ask for a referral for a gastroenterologist. Toddler diarrhea is certainly a real thing, but just because it is common doesn't mean docs should just diagnose it and blow it off because the kid will most likely grow out of it.

Kids put everything in their mouths, so bacterial infection, or parasites could be part of it. If your child isn't growing because of it you need to harness all the mama bear you've got in you and really push for referrals and further tests if you feel like you need them because being nice is just going to get you a "toddler diarrhea" diagnosis.

If there are gut permeability issues your child could be reacting to any number of things. You could try the GAPS diet protocol to see if there is any improvement.

Too much fructose seems to bring on instant diarrhea with my little one, apple juice seems to be particularly problematic.

You could also try replacing wheat with rice and see if you get any improvement.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:55 PM

possibly i will look into that!!

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 03, 2012
at 09:41 PM

thanks for your response, I am in the UK and it seems here doctors aren't prepared to consider that food is the issue... It seems like its the same old IBS coverall story/fob off, we don't know what it is so we'll call it this... I shall certainly harness my mama bear... I'm definitely considering the fructose issue and I will have a look for a naturopath.. thanks again

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 10:19 PM

Just found this, thought it might be helpful: http://www.ibs-solutions.co.uk/phdi/p1.nsf/supppages/ibs?opendocument&part=3

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:53 PM

I don't know if this is a possibility, but isn't it a little easier to be seen by a specialist in France? Maybe time for a little vacation over/under the channel.

Medium avatar

(12379)

on April 03, 2012
at 09:49 PM

yay for mama bear - i love being mama bear! My aunt's nickname is 'mama grizz' because she was so fierce when it came to my 4 cousins

2
8d454fc50d6d58643d6f8b0d1e7ea8ea

on April 03, 2012
at 11:48 PM

I don't know how possible this would be for you, but Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, who developed the GAPS diet, is in the UK, and it looks like there are a number of GAPS practitioners there as well (see http://gaps.me/preview/?page_id=496). I def. second (third?) giving that protocol a try.

1
Bd614f091f0625dea86bad5791471f2d

(775)

on April 03, 2012
at 11:54 PM

The greasy diarrhea sounds like gluten intolerance. He will probably not test positive for celiac antibodies because of his immature immune system. I would go with a biopsy or test his stool. I would definitely go Rambo on the gluten. It can be everywhere--even in products like lotions, soaps, and toothpaste.

I would use a mineral supplement, for sure. They make them in liquid form that you can drop into his drink. Also, probiotics are a must.

I hope you can figure it out soon, poor little guy! My little girl is almost two, and I know how difficult it is to see them suffer.

8a73da369b18c8f11bb8eb372a6363d3

on April 04, 2012
at 06:28 PM

thanks Clear-eyed Sjy I hope we get to the bottom of it soon (no pun intended) and I certainly won't be waiting until he's four!

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