WARNING: graphic baby poop talk ahead. Proceed with caution.
When my second daughter was born, I expected the normal newborn poop of a breastfed baby – mustard yellow, curd-like and sweet-smelling. This never happened for her. Her poop was, shall we say, a bit on the foul side: brown, sometimes with black streaks, mucus-y, and smelly. I knew something was not right and kept hoping it would change, but it only got worse. Clearly there was something going on with her digestive system. She sometimes had a lot of gas, which I know people think is normal for babies, but my first baby had no gas, so I wasn’t going to accept it in this one. I had to figure out what was causing her tummy distress. She also had little hives/rash on her neck and behind her ears. During night feedings, she would sometimes take 45 minutes to go back to sleep. She just didn’t calm down quickly. At times I wondered if I had a “colicky” baby.
I decided to investigate my diet. I was already gluten-free. I then went off dairy as that is a common allergen, but no significant change happened. What was I eating a lot of that could be a potential allergen? I ate a lot of corn – could that be it? I ate tortilla chips every day and a lot of them. I also ate corn tamales and corn tortillas. I did a search on the web to see if other people had any experience with corn and newborns but found nothing. I decided to do my own test and stop eating corn. Lo and behold, within days, my 2 month old baby stopped having gas. She stopped having bowel movements as frequently and the poop? Not dark and smelly anymore! Her skin cleared up, and the best part of all was that she calmed down at night and went right back to sleep after her feedings.
There is still no corn in my diet or hers. I did test my theory and ate corn one time – her stool changed and her rash came back. I am hoping that she will not be sensitive to corn as she gets older, but I will proceed with caution. I hope that this little anecdote helps a mom out there searching for an answer.