Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Days 17-20 - Eggs, beef and ghee

Our "staycation" is over already! It went by in a whirl. We didn't get around to doing much of anything. I think it was good for Ian to stay home and see how all-consuming this diet is right now and how needy Ellie is when she is not feeling well. (Not that he doesn't see that on weekends, but four days straight is another matter.) I'd calculate how many days straight I've been doing it but that would probably make my head hurt.

On Saturday we were indeed feeling bold and served up soft-boiled duck eggs with our breakfast soup. Ellie was very excited! Eggies! Having the egg white in addition to the raw yolk was much more satisfying and helped me stay fuller through the morning. That night Ellie slept through the night for the first time since starting Intro. Horray!!! Last time we trialed whole chicken eggs she was up with stomach cramps for hours. Since then she's just been doing great. I am so, SO happy to have eggs back. It's been 9 months since we've been able to eat eggs and it opens up so many possibilities, especially when we get further into the diet and can do some baking. Mmmm. Plus soon we'll be able to eat scrambled eggs, which are the world's best (nutritious) "I don't feel like cooking" food.

Ellie did so great on whole eggs that we decided to trial (goat's milk) ghee today. Ghee is clarified butter that has all the protein and lactose removed so all that's left is the fat. It's (supposedly) a very low-risk way of starting dairy. Since our yogurt trial was a bust, we're starting back at the beginning with ghee. I've always been too scared to try ghee, but Dr. Natasha suggests starting there so that's where we're starting.

Ghee is delicious! I stirred it into our lunch soup and it added a richness that was wonderful. It was also incredibly refreshing to have a flavor that didn't come from meat or vegetables! I gave Ellie a taste of it off the spoon and she was super excited about it, and then devastated when I stirred it into her bowl of soup. It seriously took her 10 minutes to recover (it was one of those days) but I explained that we had to have our ghee in our soup. Sometimes I don't understand the reasoning behind the Intro protocol, but I take it seriously anyway.

After five nights of amazing, silent, happy, peaceful bedtimes, tonight Ellie was a disaster again. She was telling me her tummy hurt and wouldn't lay down and cried for about 30 minutes until my last round of Tura-Lura-Lural finally worked its magic. Initially I thought: "Oh no! Not the ghee! It was so tasty!!!" But then I went back and looked at our food journal.

Can I just take a moment and say if you are doing this diet or any other elimination diet with a kiddo you must keep a food journal. A really, really detailed one. I slacked off on that for months in the early stages of our elimination diet journey and probably missed a lot of clues because I just couldn't keep track of everything in my head. The day I started the Specific Carbohydrate Diet I really committed to keeping a journal that tracked everything I ate and everything Ellie ate and all of our symptoms. It has saved my bacon so many times.

So I went back to the journal and puzzled over why the past five days have been so good and suddenly things went south. Then I noticed that over the past five days we ate almost no beef. I wasn't eliminating beef on purpose but suddenly it became clear. I looked back at the past 20 days and every day Ellie had beef she was sick that night. She has done much better eating chicken, lamb and pork. This shouldn't be surprising to me - beef used to make Ellie so sick that we had her allergist test to see if she was allergic (it came back negative). She didn't eat beef for many months but eventually we reintroduced it and she seemed to tolerate it. Who knows why it would be worse now? Maybe because her gut is very sensitive right now as it heals.

Of course I could be wrong and she could be reacting to the ghee. So tomorrow I'll take out beef and leave in ghee and see what happens.

For the record, right now we are eating: broth, soups and stews, duck eggs, goat ghee and sauerkraut juice. I am actually eating 1 Tbsp. sauerkraut with meals and doing great with that. We haven't started any supplements yet. So we are solidly still in Stage 2 of the Intro, although I have made two roasts in an effort to increase the solid/liquid ratio of Ellie's diet and that seems to be going fine, even though roasting is a Stage 4 preparation method. The plan is to give ghee a couple of days. Maybe next we'll trial scrambled eggs, or fish.


  1. Annie, you and Ellie are just doing so amazingly!!! I'm so excited for you both about the sleep-through night. (The first time my son slept through the night was when he was 3.25 yrs old, the night he started this journey.) You bring so much wisdom to this community. I'm so glad you're blogging!!


  2. Thank you so much Baden. This comment really made my day :) I'm so happy to have you following our journey, and so glad someone like you has come before me - I am learning so much from your blog!