Friday, June 12, 2009

Soy, Eggs and Pinto Beans

Well, we finally splurged for the $400.00 IgG Allergy test for Taliesin. It's a blood-test which measures the amount of a patient's antibodies to various foods. Taliesin bravely allowed the doctor to squeeze out drop after drop of blood from his little finger, all in the hope of discovering what he can and cannot eat. And now we know.

Soy, eggs, and pinto beans. Yes, that's right. But lima and garbanzo beans seem to be fine. And guess what? So does wheat. Of course, that's a slightly suspect result, since he hasn't eaten any wheat-related grains in years, so it's unlikely his blood would contain antibodies for them. But nevertheless we were surprised.

Soy is fine with me -- it's going to be difficult, because soy lecithin seems to be in most candies, chocolates, etc. and part of our goal here is to help Tal to feel normal. But soy is also not a part of what we consider our staple diet. The only problem is that I just bought a few packages of the only gluten/dairy/annatto-free butter-substitute I know of, and it's soy-based. But happily, dairy does not seem to be on the list of reactive foods, so we can now start reintroducing regular butter.

I'm not even going to talk about pinto beans. Other than the fact that I just bought a bulk-box of pinto beans, we don't really care. There are so many beans in the sea.

Eggs is a different story. We have ducks!!! Eggs are the best binding replacement for gluten! We LOVE eggs!!! Eggs are an important part of the protein in our diets! We're all going to mourn the loss of our eggs for quite a while, I'm sure. But Taliesin took a different path. As soon as I read out the results of his test, he announced, "Well, I guess we'll have to get a Pappa duck and let them have babies!"

Well thank goodness somebody sees the light, here.

The good news is that our doctor suggested we try introducing some whole grains. Since no antibodies appeared for any grains, it's possible that Taliesin just has a very permeable intestinal lining, and that it's not the particular grains that are the problem, but their finely-ground (processed) nature. Even rice could be a problem, in that case. He recommended trying out a whole-grain only diet, and then introducing some of the hither-to prohibited grains to see how it goes. We will. But first there's a summer of big events to get through, so we're going to keep that experiment for the fall.

I feel easily confused, here, bouncing around between foods and fears like biological bingo balls. First gluten-free, then also dairy-free, then goat's milk was OK, and now we're soy/dairy/pinto-bean free, as well, but dairy is OK and we might introduce some whole grains. There's a part of me that wants to throw it all out the window, just eat what we want, and see what happens, but this is my children's health I'm playing with, and I just can't be that reckless.

Sigh. Here we go on another journey.