I have an 8mo at home who hasn't been exposed to gluten or dairy yet. We give him mostly homemade fruits and veggies. This week we introduced him to egg for the first time and he did fine with it. He is almost exclusively breast fed but I don't know how much longer that will last. I was thinking of holding off on gluten introduction as long as possible but let's face it, even in the most Paleo strict household eventually our kids are going to become exposed to it if they live in modern society so we should be prepared to deal with it. Should I continue to hold out or should I start introducing it now while he's still on breast milk? I found this recommendation off Medscape, which suggests that I'm about 1-2mo too late.
Get Free Paleo Recipes Instantly
I wouldn't wring my hands for being "1-2 mo. too late". That's not how nature works. Every individual is different, and genetic and environmental factors play a role in food tolerance.
My advice to you:
- Stop worrying about this.
- Don't go out of your way to force exposure. Just keep feeding your child a variety of complete foods (fruits, vegetables, fish, meats, nuts).
- Let your kid play in the dirt!
- When the opportunity for exposure presents itself, don't fret about it, just relax and let it happen. The odds are excellent your child will tolerate the new food just fine. Despite what the paleo hardcore may insist: humans are incredibly adaptable to different foods. That's part of what has made the species so successful. Difficulty with food is more the exception than the rule.
When you keep only whole, real food in the house and celebrate it, you are laying the groundwork for a lifetime of good habits and good eating for your child. Letting food turn into a neurosis does rather the opposite.
i would never feed my kid something i knew what not good for him. i feel like that's child abuse.
So many people are missing the point. If you don't introduce him to these sorts of foods in a controlled manner, the damage may be far higher once he is out of your control for a little while, such as at school, or a friend's house, or a birthday party, and he gets a massive shot of the worst kind of gluten-containing food, or something like that.
The logic here is that he should be introduced these foods in a controlled manner, but not any more than is necessary to make sure his body isn't totally shocked if he does end up eating something bad.
Anyway, as for when to introduce, I'd say it has something to do with when you expect him to ever be out of your control, and possibly exposed to something horrible, like normal pizza. If you expect this to happen soon, you may want to start as soon as normal parents would expect their children to eat food like that. Otherwise it may be better to wait longer, and expose more carefully and slowly.
The main point I should add here is that you should add the least dangerous ones first, and move from there. Start with small amounts of proper sourdough bread, or something like that, before you even think about more normal varieties of bread, or whatever.
As james said, ignore the militants! This is about living in the real world, and doing the best you can! A normal social life for your child will almost certainly lead him to be exposed to some horrible stuff, and it would be best if his systems are as ready as they can be to handle this stuff, and careful exposure is one way to do so!
I'm gonna take the potentially unpopular opinion and say I feel like you should at some point. I'd probably feed him small amounts of sourdough to begin with.
never????? isnt this a paleo forum? gluten should NEVER be consumed
Checking out this previous related question may be useful:
Folks have been eating wheat for generations now, and only in recent history has there been a rather tenuous link between wheat/gluten and health. And only in very recent history do we have folks likening wheat to poison. Ignore the chicken littles.
Some wheat product is likely fine, as long as it doesn't displace nutrient dense foods to the point of causing malnutrition. It's quite likely your child doesn't have a dysfunctional gut as most folks do, I don't believe it's the wheat that necessarily causes the problem, but wheat/gluten intolerance is a symptom of a greater problem.
Feed him whatever the rest of the family eats. If gluten makes you sick, it will make him sick, too. No dilemma there, for me, if my kids were little again. He will get it occasionally at school, which should be okay as long as it's not too much. I believe that you can be gluten allergic or sensitive but never become celiac unless you overdose or your body becomes sick in some way. Managing gluten sensitivity is whole lot better than celiac disease.
My only dilemma would be milk.
If there is any hint of gluten sensitivity in the family I would steer clear of any use of gluten containing foods.
Why would you want to introduce gluten / grain foods when it's not what our systems were designed to process?
Don't listen to the militants. If you don't introduce him to gluten containing foods there's a good chance you're setting him up for an unnecessary food intolerance. At least let him have oats.
I think a little bit around now, while your breastfeeding, is optimal....
From all of the above, the following final recommendations can be drawn for the prevention of celiac disease:
• Breastfeeding should be conducted for at least 6 months.
• Gluten should be introduced while the infant is breastfed between the age of 4 and 6 months.
• Gluten should be introduced in ‘small amounts’.
• Breastfeeding should be conducted for at least 2–3 months after gluten introduction.