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Feeling Discouraged

It’s been a week since we started our eczema elimination diet. What it’s entailed is taking dairy and gluten out of our diet to see if it is indeed a trigger or irritant in my children’s eczema. I too have adopted this diet since my youngest is still breastfeeding. It’s only been a week, but I haven’t seen many positive changes. In fact, I’ve only experienced negative ones so far. Firstly, I am beyond fatigued. More than usual. Of course, it’s a season of life after having a child where you’re naturally tired due to sleep deprivation and life with young kids in general. But, it’s a feeling of lethargy that I can’t seem to shake, even with coffee and sleep – my usual energy boosters. I’ve even gotten in some exercise without much improvement on my energy levels.

Current energy levels

My mood has also been negatively affected. I don’t know if it’s the gloomy weather lately (but let’s be honest, this has been the case all winter long), but I am just feeling down. My hormones have been sort of up and down (which does affect my mood) since giving birth 10 months ago, but I am really feeling, well honestly, empty this last few days. I actually haven’t been able to feel much, which is unlike me, because I feel all the feels pretty much all day long. Maybe it’s because my energy has been zapped, but I just don’t feel like myself.

Even with rash-ridden cheeks, he’s pretty cute.

Lastly, the worst part of all this is that not only am I feeling terrible, but my children’s eczema hasn’t been settling. In fact, my baby has experienced some redness around his cheeks the last few days. Upon reading further into potential food allergies that may cause eczema, Dr. Janice Joneja who wrote the book Dealing with Food Allergies in Babies and Children has in her research found the food allergens that most frequently trigger eczema in babies and children are:

  • Egg
  • Milk and milk products
  • Peanut
  • Soy
  • Shellfish

Sigh. That’s a long list of food that we include in our diet. Eggs and peanuts especially. So I may consider doing a modification of our elimination diet to exclude these items too. I’ve realized it is harder to do an elimination diet with my older son since he is fed a hot lunch at preschool. The lunches are always peanut free, but anything else goes. I could pack a lunch for him instead, but did you read my current energy levels/mood above? Probably not going to happen. So, for now it will just be my baby and I on this dreadful eczema elimination diet. If we have some success with it, then I will try it with my older son when he is off school for the summer. Have any of you experienced similar reactions when on a dairy and gluten free diet? I’d love to hear.



3 Discussions on
“Feeling Discouraged”
  • So first of all, I am sorry to hear you’re discouraged, it isn’t an easy skin condition to battle so let me tell you that I KNOW.

    As for eczema I have had it my entire life and have the scars to prove it. I never changed my diet or did anything differently with eating but have noticed:

    Eggs / Honey SOMETIMES triggers my eczema. I can’t even really tell you when why and how but once I ate egg pasta and broke out in ezcema all over. Same with honey. I eat honey in small careful doses now but don’t avoid eggs any more (maybe it was an additive in the egg pasta??)

    I prevent it rather than let it flare up which means I shower every other day in LUKEWARM water and moisturize like crazy after I get out.

    I also don’t scratch not wear tight or itchy clothing and try to keep the heat down low to keep eczema at bay (dry heat irritates)

    If I feel a flare up, I don’t scratch, I immediately dab some Clobetasol or some medical cream on there to stop the itching and let it heal. I’ve been lazy a few times and now there is a patch on my knee because I’ve scratched it raw…

    Other than that, I try to keep a humid environment going and after swimming or anything with chemicals, I shower quickly and moisturize like mad.

    I have not tried to avoid gluten or anything but maybe it is a trigger for some people with certain allergies to it…

    • Thank you so much Sherry for your input! That is all really helpful to know. I think you’re doing the right thing in preventing it, rather than letting it flare up. It seems like eczema treatment is truly a holistic effort that requires a good bathing and moisturizing routine, as well as avoiding foods that might cause one to flare up. Often, it seems like I’m walking on egg shells with it. But in any case, I appreciate your input. Are you finding the same system of bathing/moisturizing works for your baby’s eczema too?

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