H-Bear // The Milk Ladder, Attempt #1

The Milk Ladder Attempt #1We’ve been debating starting H-Bear on the Milk Ladder since he turned one in June. He has a Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy (CMPA) as well as having a soya allergy, so for a family of utter cheese heads this is a whole new world for us!

He was first diagnosed by the sleep consultants we were working with during the Bubbaroo sleep campaign when he was a newborn. Initially I felt quite angered by their suspected diagnosis (this Mama loves her cheese), and vehemently denied that I could possibly create a child with CMPA. But the facts outweighed the denial, and a confirmed diagnosis from our Health Visitor and GP eventually made me realise that the sleep consultants were indeed correct…


Anyway, H-Bear started to gradually wean himself off his allergy formula before his first birthday as it was fairly disgusting (which is a huge understatement), and we switched him to oat milk to give his body a rest from the very small amount of cow’s milk in the Aptamil Pepti 2. After a few weeks he was sleeping better, and seemed a bit happier so Nick and I both decided it was time to start the Milk Ladder…

Dum, dum, dummmmmm!

The Milk Ladder is a pretty epic and delicious way of introducing milk into the diet of someone who suffers from CMPA; it begins with malted milk biscuits, moves onto digestives, then cupcakes or muffins, and then scotch pancakes! We were looking forward to getting started, if just for having these yummy goods in our cupboard! I’ve found this resource very useful for planning our Milk Ladder escapades.

On week one we began to introduce the malted milks. H-Bear’s face lit up at the sight of a biscuit from a regular packet that HE COULD EAT! I started him on a quarter on the first day, and gradually built up over the week so he was having 1.5-2 a day. He was fine, and I leapt for joy at the prospect of being able to share cheese with my boy…

During the next week we began the second stage: Digestives.

I gave him half a digestive biscuit, and he gobbled it down with a huge grin on his face. “Yay!” I thought, “Soon it will be cheese! And milkshakes! And an actual cake that hasn’t been made with beetroot and that is covered in chocolate buttons!” But sadly, a couple of hours later, he started getting incredibly windy, and by the night he was burping, squatting and crying in discomfort.

Suffice to say I didn’t get much sleep that night (2.5 hours if you must know). He came into bed with me with a rock-hard, little bowling ball of a belly, and proceeded to toss and turn all night. He kept throwing himself against me to help himself pass wind. It was all kinds of delightful, as one can imagine, and definitely not an experience that is documented anywhere in a parenting handbook!

So it looks like we’ll be returning to the first rung of the ladder in a week or two…

I’m obviously fairly disappointed. I was so excited at the prospect of being able to introduce him to cheese (have I mentioned cheese enough in this post yet?!) and take him on coffee shop dates with babyccinos! We will continue to persevere and keep our fingers crossed that it may still be something he will grow out of.


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  1. 19th August 2016 / 10:20 am

    Poor H-Bear! But the first step was a success so don’t feel too downhearted. Good luck x

  2. 19th August 2016 / 9:12 pm

    Oh no, sorry it didn’t go quite to plan! This was really interesting to read though – I’ve always heard of the milk ladder, but had no idea what it actually involved! Fingers crossed for next time xx

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