Both of my kids have had an intolerance to dairy and soy as infants. Which has been a real pain in the keester when trying to feed myself while breastfeeding.
Fortunately thanks to the uprising of the anti-glutenites, there are even more options available now than there were four years ago for those with sissy tummies, I mean dietary issues.
Here are 5 of my favorite dairy-free, soy-free snack foods. Emphasis on snacks. Because when I’m breastfeeding I find myself hungry damn near all the time. And it’s exacerbated when I can’t eat rich dairy foods (cheese…oooh how I long for cheese) which would normally stick with me and make me feel full for longer. So these are my alternative grab-n-go foods and/or indulgent treats.
I realize there are no fruits or vegetables on this list. I whole-heartedly advocate for baby carrots as a healthy snack. But that would be a boring list.
1. Lara Bars. Sweet geezus I wish I had invested in this company before I gave birth. I eat at least one every day. This was the floor of my car the other day:
Not all were consumed in one sitting, but they are never far from reach. My favorites are Banana Bread, Cashew Cookie and Peanut Butter Cookie. Satisfying without making me feel like I ate a brick.
2. Trader Joe’s Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels. Initially I was dipping pretzels in PB from the jar (peanut butter is my new cheese). But that’s not very portable. So when I found these I was delighted. I’m sure there are other brands, but at least one – Costco’s – has soy in it, so I have stuck with these. (I couldn’t find a link to these on the TJ website, but there was a bag being sold on ebay – what the hell? – so I linked to it.)
3. Enjoy Life Snickerdoodles. Desserts are one of the hardest things to find when you can’t have dairy. I had all but given up. Then my husband bought me these on Mother’s Day. I ate the WHOLE EFFING BOX in one day. I mean, it was Mother’s Day. And that’s what happens when you go without something for too long. B-I-N-G-E. Trader Joe’s also makes a similar kind, but Enjoy Life is softer, and therefore slightly better.
4. Gluten-Free Granola. As mentioned, thanks to the gluten nerds for bringing allergen-free foods mainstream. Trader Joe’s makes it, but I’ve also bought Bakery on Main brand in the local grocery store. A good backup when I’ve OD’d on Lara Bars. (Again, I couldn’t find a link on the TJ site so I linked to Amazon selling it…? You have an interesting distribution strategy, Joe the Trader.)
5. Earth Balance Dairy and Soy Free Butter. I eat this by the spoonful. Just kidding. This one is not a snack itself, but is a snack enabler. It’s been great to have for baking and as a butter substitute in recipes. My husband thinks it tastes funky and is too abnormal to be good for us, but I don’t care. I have enjoyed having ‘butter’ for tasty treats like cinnamon toast and rice krispie bars.
I also found a few websites this time around that were helpful – Dairy Free For Baby (this is where I found the fabulous banana bread recipe) and About.com’s Dairy Free Cooking (if it calls for soy I either substitute or skip it – there are plenty of non-soy options on here too).
I fully intend to start eating dairy again once I’m able, but I will say there have been two unintentional side effects of not eating it.
1) Weight loss. I’m pretty sure dropping dairy is largely responsible for losing my pregnancy pounds so quickly. Of course I know from the first time around that my ass will puff right back up as soon as I get back on the cheese wagon.
2) Smooth moves. This is code for ‘more regular bowel movements’ – or at least that’s what I assume from the herbal tea that goes by this name and is designed to alleviate constipation. Not that I would know personally. I just saw it on the shelf once. Er, anyway.
All I know is my pipes have never been cleaner. I attributed this solely to the effects of nursing with my first daughter. It wasn’t until I had #2 (poop pun!) that I read another blogger praising her dairy-free lifestyle for regulating her bowels, and I put 2 & 2 together (poop pun!), and realized oh – that’s why.
I’m pretty sure this post has crossed far too many lines now.