Milk Allergy Diet

This type of allergy is quite common among infants and young children. It usually occurs when infants are provided with cow-milk-based formula, or through a mother’s breast milk if she consumes it. Milk consists of proteins, minerals, fats, carbohydrates, and vitamins. Casein is the primary protein in cow’s milk and accounts for about 80% of the total milk protein. The proteins in the milk, especially casein, causes an allergic reaction in some people. A person can be sensitive to either casein or whey protein, and sometimes even both.

Rapid onset and slower onset are the two major types of milk allergy reactions. The rapid type of reaction occurs immediately, within a few seconds to hours, after consuming the milk or the milk products. It is categorized by symptoms like vomiting, wheezing, hives, anaphylaxis (a sudden and severe whole body reaction), and angioedema (fluid collection in body tissues that causes swelling). The slower onset type of reaction is more common and develops symptoms over a period of hours to days, after the consumption. These symptoms include vomiting, loose stool (possibly containing blood), fussiness or irritability, and failure to gain weight and grow normally.

Foods Recommended Not Recommended
Beverages Carbonated beverages, coffee, tea, soy-substitute milk formulas, water, fruit drinks All kinds of milk (whole, skim, low-fat, buttermilk, powdered, evaporated, condensed, hot cocoa), yogurt, eggnog, milkshakes, and malts
Breads Milk-free breads (French bread, wheat, white bread, rye, corn, graham, gluten, and soy breads), graham crackers, or rice wafers Donuts, pancakes, biscuits, muffins, waffles, zwieback, crackers, saltines, rusk, French toast made with milk
Cereals Any cereal without milk or milk products High protein cereals, prepared and precooked cereals with milk solids, and cereals that contain milk products
Meats, Fish, Poultry and Cheese Beef, chicken, veal, fish, pork, turkey, lamb, and organ meats (baked, boiled, broiled, roasted or fried), tofu (prepared without milk or milk products), sausage, deli/luncheon meats, and ham All kinds of cheese, sausage products, bologna, frankfurters, meatloaf, breaded meats, croquettes, casseroles, hamburgers (unless made without milk)
Vegetables Fresh, frozen, or canned vegetables without milk or milk products added, and all vegetable juices Au gratin, buttered, creamed, escalloped vegetables, and dipped or battered vegetables
Soups Bouillon, soups with broth base, plain, or with allowed foods Bisques, chowders, creamed soups, all soups made with milk or milk products
Desserts Meringue, gelatin, popsicles, cookies, fruit ice, fruit whip, angel food cake, and pie crusts made without milk or milk products Cake, pudding, cookies, cream desserts, custard, or sherbet containing milk products, ice cream, cream pie, pastries brushed with milk, junket, and popover
Miscellaneous Catsup, nuts, olives, spices, pickles, herbs, chili powder, salt, condiments, and any foods that are milk-/ cheese-/butter-free, or that do not contain powdered milk or whey All items containing milk, whey casein, cheese, butter, caseinates, hydrolysates, lactose, lactalbumin, lactoglobulin, milk solids, or artificial butter flavor

A milk allergy can affect the digestive system and other systems in the body such as the skin and lungs’ airways. In very rare cases, it can be life-threatening, as well. Having a milk allergy diet doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy eating your favorite foods. In fact, according to some people, milk substitutes like vanilla-flavored soy milk tastes better than regular cow’s milk.




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