Possible Cow’s Milk Allergy In Baby: Update

I am thrilled to share we are dairy-allergy free! I previously wrote about the possibility of a cow’s milk intolerance in my baby, but after a reintroduction to the milk she has been completely symptom free! After ruling out the cow’s milk intolerance, we’ve concluded her ill-timed symptoms were due to a virus. Suspicious timing, but I’m glad we finally know the reason behind her hives and GI issues!

Along this journey of uncertainty, I learned more about milk than I ever cared to know. Instead of letting all this information go to waste, I figured I could share it with you 🙂



– Milk = Whey protein (liquid part of milk after curds are removed) + Casein protein (curds)

– With Alexa’s case, we were looking for symptoms of a cow’s milk intolerance, not a full blown cow’s milk protein allergy. WHY? She had no issues digesting yogurt and cheese starting at 9 months. In most cases, if a baby can digest yogurt and cheese with ease, she is not likely allergic to whey or casein. However, there are of course exceptions to every rule…

– Yogurt and cheese are more processed dairy products than straight cow’s milk. This explains one reason why some babies can tolerate certain dairy products, but not milk.

– In comparison with older children and adults, babies are born with a high level of the enzyme lactase which is responsible for breaking down “milk sugar” or lactose. For this reason, it is rare (but not impossible) for a baby to be lactose intolerant.

According to Kid Health, the typical symptoms of a cow’s milk allergy include,

“Symptoms of cow’s milk protein allergy will generally appear within the first few months of life, often within days or weeks after introduction of cow’s milk-based formula into the diet. An infant can experience symptoms either very quickly after feeding (rapid onset) or not until 7 to 10 days after consuming the cow’s milk protein (slower onset). Symptoms may also occur with exclusive breastfeeding if the mother ingests cow’s milk.

The slower-onset reaction is more common. Symptoms may include loose stools (possibly containing blood), vomiting, gagging, refusing food, irritability or colic, and skin rashes, like eczema. This type of reaction is more difficult to diagnose because the same symptoms may occur with other health conditions. Most kids will outgrow this form of allergy after 2 years of age, although some might not outgrow it until adolescence.

Rapid-onset reactions come on suddenly with symptoms that can include irritability, vomiting, wheezing, swelling, hives, other itchy bumps on the skin, and bloody diarrhea.

In some cases, a potentially severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) can occur and affect the baby’s skin, stomach, breathing, and blood pressure. Anaphylaxis is more common with other food allergies (peanuts and tree nuts) than with milk allergy.”

If you are suspicious about a cow’s milk allergy in your baby, it’s best to speak with your pediatrician!



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