Actions and reactions

Just posted a photo of my small mans reaction to milk,hives or ‘weals’ on his chest after some milk dropped onto it. He also gets this reaction to blackcurrants and either rubber gloves or washing up liquid,fun. His main symptoms of milk allergy though were constant stuffiness & wheezing with lots and lots of green foamy gooey nappies. Yet no one copped it until we were in a & e one day and the rash above was spotted after he had thrown up a bottle on himself. An unusual symptom too was no energy,around the age of 4 mths he was starting to roll and it was around this time also that we started weaning (17 weeks),some of the baby food had skimmed whole milk in it. By the age of 5 months he had stopped rolling and could barely lift his head from the ground doing tummy time. We went to physio and got exercises to help,but they couldn’t really. Since going off milk he started rolling around the ground,sitting properly for long periods and now does 360 turns doing tummy time and crawls/slides backwards. It’s been 2 months milk free 🙂



Milk allergy reaction

So what can they have?

Well everything really. It’s almost all homemade from here on in though. For emergencies i find ellas kitchen products are fantastic and a lot of them are dairy free,always check the back though. The fish one isn’t nor some of the roasts or anything with cheese. We have the added complication of having to avoid carrots & sweet potato so almost all of them are out. Unfortunately we may have to avoid apples too,will have to trial them again soon but the last time he had them there was copious immediate vomiting so not a great sign!

Anyway one thing you may be surprised about :

Custard! Yes the humble custard is absolutely a-ok, once made from powder using your childs milk. Mix with some fruit to make a nutricious snack,we have done it this week with pear and the mix of hot custard and cold pear is yummy. Absolutely no need to mix the sugar into the paste when making it, i’ve made it without and it was lovely.


All fruit and veg. All dairy free so don’t you worry yummy mummies (and daddies). Mash them,boil them,roast them,puree to your hearts content. Set aside one day a week (or an evening ) and get all your cooking done at once and then freeze for the week ahead, meal planning is where it’s at.

Meat bought from the butchers and made into a meal using your own ingredients is fine. Processed or marinated meats will have to be checked for ingredients. The humble fish finger has dairy ingredients for example. Always check what products your local supermarket has in it’s free from section. Not to be putting one shop over another but Tesco have a great selection.

Dairy always gets a little outdone by Gluten free but take heart,it’s because dairy is so much easier to manage. If you have a child both dairy and gluten free then you have my sympathies. We did a one month gluten free trial here and it is in everything! Although as above,all fruit & veg are fine. When i start posting recipes i will include all free from tags to make them easier to search.

The basics

So are you confused yet? Spent an hour kneeling in the baby food aisle only to come away with more fruit? You are not alone! The information for allergy sufferers in Ireland is confusing enough without having to decifer hidden ingredients. What i’m finding is if it doesn’t say dairy free on the packaging then be very careful. Here are the names of some hidden dairy ingredients to watch for :

Ammonium Caseinate

Calcium caseinate

Casein Hydrolysate

Iron Caseinate

Magnesium Caseinate


Potassium Caseinate

Rennet Casein

Sodium Caseinate

Zinc Caseinate



sweet whey

whey powder

whey protein

whey protein concentrate

whey protein hydrolysate.

Recaldent (Can be in some dental products)


This next list is more american and is from and just shows where manufacturers manage to squeeze in hidden dairy.

Artificial Sweeteners – Darn, I guess we will have to suffer with real sugar! Some artificial sweeteners are derived from dairy foods.

Baby Formula – Read the labels carefully on this one. Babies can have much more severe allergic reactions to milk than adults.

Bakery Goods – This is a hard one to verify, although many fresh bakery goods do come labeled with ingredients.

Baking Mixes (cakes, biscuits, pancakes, etc.) – Read up, there are some okay brands.

Bath Products (shampoo, conditioner, soap, etc.) – Okay, so these are not food items, but those who tend to have skin reactions to milk products (i.e. eczema) may want to avoid topical application.

Bread – Whey is a common preservative in breads. Also, other milk proteins and possibly cheese or butter may be included, depending on the type and brand.

Breath Mints – Not all, but a few do contain casein related ingredients.

Candy – Much of the candy world (of the non-chocolate variety) is free game from a dairy free point of view, not from a health perspective of course, but there are a few to watch out for.

Canned Tuna Fish – Some contain hydrolized caseinate, check out our Product List for the good ones.

Caramel – This is a highly suspicious food and ingredient. It may either be made from sugar and water or milk.

Cereal – Dry and instant cereals vary significantly in ingredients. Even the same type of cereal may contain milk ingredients in the brand name, but not in the generic version.

Chewing Gum – Okay, now this is a weird one. Some brands do actually contain milk protein ingredients.

Chicken Broth – Several brands use milk proteins or solids.

Chocolate – Milk chocolate is a given, but some semi-sweet and dark chocolate brands have milk ingredients as well. Luckily the better tasting ones don’t, check our Product List for some excellent dairy free chocolates.

Chocolate Drinks – Even the non-milk varieties frequently have some dairy to beef them up.

Coffee Whiteners / Creamers – Well, something has to make them white and creamy.

Cookies & Crackers – Often the most processed foods of them all.

Cream Liqueurs – These may possess solid milk ingredients or caseinates.

Custard / Pudding – Most contain milk products, although a few are dairy free.

Drugs / Medications – Lactose is used as the base for more than 20 percent of prescription drugs and about 6 percent of over-the-counter medicines and vitamins.

Eggnog – Try some soy-nog, or make an at home version with other “milk” alternatives.

Fat Replacers – Some are derived from milk, such as Simplesse® & Dairy-Lo®.

Fondues – Isn’t this the word the Swiss use for cheese?

Fried Foods – The breading on fried foods can contain many mysterious substances. Also, cheese is commonly added for flavor and texture.

Ghee – This is technically pure butter fat, no proteins or sugars, but some argue that trace amounts may still linger.

Goat’s Milk – Although slightly different, goat’s milk has proteins similar in structure to cow’s milk proteins, and thus is often an allergen for those with cow’s milk allergy. Also, goat’s milk contains a significant amount of lactose, just a touch less than cow’s milk, and thus not suitable for those with lactose intolerance.

Granola & Nutrition Bars – Just like cookies, various milk additives could be in there.

Gravies – Some utilize milk ingredients for flavor and texture.

Hot Cocoa Mix – The best varieties are pure cocoa and sugar, but some have milk ingredients added for a creamier drink.

Hot Dogs – What isn’t in hot dogs? (Valuable note from a viewer: “… kosher hot dogs, i.e. Hebrew National, which don’t contain milk ingredients”)

Imitation Maple and Other Syrups – Go for the real stuff, it tastes much better!

Instant Potatoes – Particularly the Au Gratin varieties.

Kosher Parve Desserts – Most parve foods are okay, but those with highly sensitive milk allergies may have a problem with the desserts.

Lactose Free Milks – These will still be loaded with milk proteins.

Lunch Meats & Sausages – Some “meat allergies” are actually dairy allergies in disguise. Lactose and caseinates are common in these foods, as well as ingredient cross-contamination.

Margarine – Most are not dairy free, and many are rich in hydrogenated oils.

Meal Replacement / Protein Powders & Beverages – Those instant breakfast mixes and muscle beverages may contain powdered milk, or other milk derived ingredients.

Peanut Butter – A very few may contain milk solids.

Potato Chips – Particularly risky among the flavored varieties, although several brands and flavors are dairy free.

Salad Dressings – Most natural brands have good dairy free flavors.

Sherbet – This is different from Sorbet (usually dairy free), and usually contains milk/cream.

Soup – Obviously the creamy varieties, but even some of the tomato and chicken based soups are not dairy free

Soy “Meat” Products – Those veggie hot dogs, sausages, and patties are also guilty of harboring milk proteins. These products are typically safe for the lactose intolerant, but allergy suffers should read the labels carefully.

Soy Cheeses – Yep, the very products combating the milk industry often contain milk proteins for a more cheese-like consistency. If you are absolutely certain that you do not have a milk allergy, then the soy cheeses should be okay. Otherwise, be sure to check the ingredients.

Spice Mixes – Several contain whey powder.

Whipped Toppings – You know those packages in the dessert section that say “non-dairy topping”. Let’s just say that term is used rather loosely. These products contain casein and are not okay for the milk allergic.