Today was going to be a recipe for egg/rice cakes with sriracha dipping sauce (courtesy of the Norseman!) However, real life happened this weekend, and that post isn’t ready yet. On the other hand, someone asked for advice about doing an elimination diet while nursing, and that sparked the idea for this post. When Prima was about three months old, we decided to jump on the Whole 30 diet as a way to clean up eating for our health, and to eliminate anything that was possibly causing us problems with her. She was super fussy and super gassy. We eventually went with a more Paleo approach, and then started letting things back in little by little.
What I learned while doing Paleo/Whole 30 while nursing is that you must, must keep full on protein, fat, and good complex carbs (like sweet potatoes.) I had the protein and fat down pretty good for a bit, but struggled with dizziness and brain fog until I started eating a lot more complex carbs in the mix. I got so sick of sweet potatoes for awhile!
What follows are some tips for replacing commonly eliminated foods, what I ate/snacked on mostly, and resources I used for cooking without the traditional dairy, grain, beans, etc. I know I can’t begin to cover all of the options and things you might need to cut out. I hope that you find it useful! Please feel free to comment with your experience and any resources or tips that worked for you! Oh, and I should add the disclaimer that you should not eliminate any food groups without talking to your doctor first. I am not a nutritional expert; this is simply what worked for me.
Replacements for common diary foods
- Butter = Earth Balance products or coconut oil // I used Earth Balance at my sister’s place, and could not taste a difference.
- Cheese = Daiya cheese products and/or nutritional yeast // Daiya is delicious, but expensive! Nutritional yeast gives you the flavor with not much extra work. Recipes here for how to use it.
- Yogurt = coconut yogurt // I haven’t tried this yet, but you can make your own almost the same way you make regular stove top yogurt! Another recipe here (or you can buy it in the store.)
- Milk = coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk // Coconut milk you can easily make at home using this method. Watch out for fillers, as it might be something you can’t have on your elimination diet.
Replacements for soy products
- Soy sauce = coconut aminos // These are so good, less sodium than soy sauce, and pretty cheap through Thrive Market (cheaper than Amazon!)
- Tofu = Chickpea or Burmese/Shan tofu // I have not tried this recipe personally, but it is on my radar.
- Mayonnaise = soy-free mayo // This recipe is so easy if you use an immersion blender and one we make often. She has an egg-free recipe, too.
Replacements for Wheat – there are so many options these days!
- Flour = GF flour mix OR Einkorn flour // The best mix I know of is from Bob’s Red Mill. Don’t use Einkorn flour if you or your baby has a gluten allergy! But if it just a sensitivity, you may be able to tolerate einkorn. It is very, very gentle.
- Bread = Ezekiel bread // We love this bread when we choose to buy it. Or you can make your own bread. More GF baking resources here and below.
- Pasta = Rice pasta //There are so many varieties. Experiment and stick with one you like
Outside the box snacks that I ate (some contain nuts! So keep that in mind.)
- Larabars // DIY your own with this recipe
- Sweet potatoes with dijon mustard
- Beef jerky
- Sea Snax (for salty cravings)
- Fried potatoes
- Boiled eggs
- Veggies (carrots, celery, cherry tomatoes)
- Energy bites
My favorite websites for recipes, inspiration, and where to even start!
- Kids With Food Allergies
- Mel Joulwan – Well Fed (Whole 30/Paleo)
- Paleo Leap (they have awesome diy condiments!)
- Wellness Mama
- 100 Days of Real Food
- Don’t Waste the Crumbs
- Gluten Free Goddess
- Jovial Foods (einkorn products)
- Thrive Market (cheaper than Amazon organic and alternative products!)
- Nom Nom Paleo
- Go Dairy Free
- Bean Mom – Dairy-Free While Nursing (site is old but good info)