EAT => Feeding Solid Food => Topic started by: maimai on August 18, 2010, 00:55:28 am

Title: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: maimai on August 18, 2010, 00:55:28 am
My LO turns 7 months this week and has been on solids regularly for 5 weeks now. She has always had a sensitive tummy. This week we introduced fresh avocado, which she LOVED, but she seems to have bad tummy pains and is very constipated. She had pears and prunes before and after the avocado, which I would have thought would have helped and she drinks about 3-4 oz of water a day besides the usual formula. Can avocados actually cause constipation? I keep reading it is supposed to help with it, not make it worse. I have avoided bananas and will continue to introduce "P" foods (peaches are next) to help. So far DD has had pears, peas, apples, carrots, prunes and sweet potato. We had to stop the carrots and apples due to severe constipation and a chat with our pediatrician. She is also on oatmeal exclusively vs. rice cereal as she could not tolerate the rice early on. Does anyone have advice for trying to re-introduce problem foods later on and when it's best to try again. I would assume a healthy dose of prunes to go with any of the known culprits as well, but just not sure how/when to proceed. Thanks so much!
Title: Re: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: ~inbalance~ on August 19, 2010, 01:19:05 am
Hi there.  :)

I do seem to recall that avocados can be troublesome to some LO's with sensitive tummies.  I'll look into it a little further to see if I can get a bit more info for you.

When you say she has a sensitive tummy, is it because of specific intolerances that you are already aware of?  Is it something you've discussed with her doctor, or more something you've noticed as you've gone along?  Is constipation the biggest issue or are there other issues as well like fussing, crying, gassiness, or rashes?  What have you introduced already?  Sorry for all the questions!

Usually when it comes to introducing solids what you want to do is introduce new foods in the morning so that if there is a reaction she has the day to recover a bit.  Always give several days (at least 3 but maybe up to a week if you know she might react) between adding new foods so that you can isolate potential problem foods.  It really helps to keep a log as well so you can refer back to what you've introduced and what reactions there might have been.  If you notice that a particular food causes a problem, stop it immediately and give it a few weeks before trying it again.

HTH :)
Title: Re: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: maimai on August 19, 2010, 23:17:16 pm
Thank you so much for all the good info. I really appreciate it. To answer your questions, as far as DD's sensitive tummy, there were no known intolerances, however she always had poopy problems - mainly in the form of gas and not pooping for 4 days at a time consistently for her first 4 months and being in obvious pain (didn't make a difference if it was breast milk or formula and I realize this isn't constipation given when she did go it was rather explosive and no hard stools, but it was always a very painful process leading up to a poop). Around 4.5 months she started going once every 3 days and then every other day until finally around 6 months she was pretty regular daily, with much less gas and pain. We started solids at 6 months exactly and she is 100% formula fed since 5 months.

We talked to her doctor early on when we started solids as it was clear rice cereal was binding her and my doctor thought that might be the case due to her history. Sure enough we switched to oatmeal right away and that helped. Over the course of the last 5-6 weeks, I have tried to slowly introduce foods giving them all at least 3-4 days or more, to see if there are issues. So far she steadily eats pears, prunes and peas, which don't cause any problems. She did well with sweet potatoes too, but we haven't had those in a couple of weeks. The problems started with carrots and then apples, which both left her extremely constipated (didn't go for days and when she did it was horrible - super hard and very painful for her to pass). It also caused horrible nights of sleep since she was in so much pain, but didn't hear her passing gas, just could tell she was writhing at night and super uncomfortable. It was obvious it was the tummy and rubbing it seemed to help a little bit, but still she was so upset. I was feeding her pears and prunes those days too, but didn't seem to help things out. So we went back to old reliable peas, prunes and pears and things normalized again. With the foods that caused problems I did talk to the doc, who did not seem too concerned, and just said to hold off and try other non-constipating foods (to her credit she didn't mention avocado, but for some reason I figured it would be okay and I had just bought some beautiful ones at the store). I then tried the avocado earlier this week since she really hates the peas and she loved it so much. Then came an even worse reaction than that to the carrots and apples and another couple days of not pooping, horrible tummy pains, bad sleep and a horrible constipated poop when it finally did arrive over a 2 day period. She still showed signs of discomfort a day after as well. We stopped the avocado immediately and introduced green beans 2 days ago given that's usually a safe bet. She seemed a bit gassy from those yesterday and today but still too early to tell the reaction. So in summary, her biggest problems seem to be with the tummy pains and constipation, but she has been crankier than usual and for the first time had the most horrible diaper rash this last month (also talked to the doc who said it is common when they start solids).

I have been giving her new foods more at lunch than breakfast since she is not overly hungry in the morning, but given the pains, it does make sense to give earlier and give her the day to work through it. It might help with our nights too. I have been keeping close track of when the foods are given too and the reactions. I appreciate all your good advice and any further thoughts you may have. Thanks for reading through this all!  :) 
Title: Re: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: ~inbalance~ on August 20, 2010, 01:01:01 am
Hey there.  :)  I think it sounds like you are doing everything right.  You're very aware of when she is in pain and are keeping a close eye on her solids introduction, and talking to her doctor which is great.  Another idea is talking to either a naturopathic doctor or maybe a nutritionist.  In my experience these people often think on different wavelengths as medical doctors and can offer up some other ideas that might help with her constipation. 

There is a thread here as well with lots of laxative food ideas to help with constipation that you might find useful:

TBH, I don't think avocados are generally considered a problem food, in fact they are usually an excellent choice for babies because they are high in good fats and are very healthy.  But I did some looking around and they contain things called amines and salicylates.  I'm not overly familiar with this stuff, but from what I gathered as I skimmed through the info, they can cause problems for some people who are intolerant to them.  Amines and salicylates are common in a lot of fruits and vegetables I think.  It might be worth looking into further if you think she is sensitive to them.  I'm not sure how common of an intolerance it is though, so I would suggest maybe doing some more research into it if you think it might be a problem.

I would continue to do what you are doing, go slowly with the introductions and stick to single foods before trying combinations as it's easier to identify problems that way.  And keep writing things down as you are doing because it helps to be able to go back and see what she ate when there is a problem.  You can try massaging her abdomen and cycling her legs to help move painful gas so it doesn't sit in her tummy and cause problems.

Sounds like you are on the right track.  She is only 7mos old, there is still lots of time for solids introduction so you can continue forward at a slow and relaxed pace to make sure nothing is bothering her.  There is no rush and formula is still the most important part of her diet until age 1.  :)
Title: Re: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: maimai on August 20, 2010, 13:25:08 pm
Thank you so much! These are great suggestions and such good info. I will look more into the salicylates as that is very interesting. The good news is that DD has a great appetite, so even though some of these foods have been rough, she sure enjoys getting them down! :)  Also makes me feel better to know its all no rush as she is just 7 months. I need to remember that and not get stressed. I am hoping her little system starts to tolerate things as she grows, just like she did eventually with all the issues during her first 4 months. Thanks again for such a thoughtful and helpful response.
Title: Re: Can avocado cause tummy trouble and when to re-introduce problem foods?
Post by: ~inbalance~ on August 22, 2010, 02:21:09 am
I'm glad I could have offered even a little bit of help.  :) 

My DS1 had a great tummy, tolerated everything I gave him.  I never had to eliminate anything from my diet when I was BFding and when it came to introducing solids he never reacted to anything and by 7/8mos I stopped being cautious and just started giving him whatever.  DS2 is so different, he has a much more sensitive tummy and I've eliminated dairy from my diet and am trying to be mindful of what I eat because he reacts so easily.  I think solids introduction will be much trickier with him!  So I understand where you are coming from.

Another idea too is to poke around the food allergies boards.  You might be able to find more helpful information over there if you find there are things she has trouble tolerating.

Good luck.  :)