In the US, the American cow has taken over. We are addicted to dairy: cheese, yogurt, and especially milk. Yet, having a toddler with dairy allergies can prove to be challenging unless you’re open to new ideas and flavors. Today’s technologies and innovations has given us many alternative options: rice, soy, almond and goats milk. New to some and known to others, I’ve recently come across hemp milk.
There are pros and cons to any milk outside of breastmilk. Will it have enough nutrients? Is it medically healthy? Does it contain omega-3 and 6s? Is it safe? What are the long term effects? And the list goes on and on.
After some research, I’ve found Hemp milk to be one of the better milks. It contains a high level of omega 3 & 6, has a high fat content and low in sugar (depending on the flavor). Our daughter has an allergy to most milks. Its a definite no to goat’s & cow’s milk and a limited amount of soy allowed. She also has a nut allergy so that knocks almond milk out. What I’ve found to be left is rice and hemp milk.
Our first challenge: Finding a milk without an allergic reaction.
I didn’t know anything about hemp milk until a friend hooked us onto it. Her daughter has similar allergies and a moderate case of eczema. I was a little skeptical because hemp milk is made from hemp nuts. With a nut allergy, we had to be sensitive to anything made from nuts. (The last time we tried a goat’s milk, she immediately broke out in hives after a sip.)
We decided to give it a try, in hopes that it would be her potential her milk solution. I would have never noticed hemp before as I shopped. It’s in an aisle verse the cold section. We prepared for the worse and hoped for the best as we gave her the first sip of hemp milk. It passed the one day and one week test. No reaction. About 2 months later, she’s still drinking it. Little did I know, there was another challenge.
Challenge #2: Getting her to drink the milk consistently.
My little girl could care less that we found the perfect milk for her. She didn’t like the taste of any alternative milk. What good is all of this goodness in a cup if she won’t drink it! I Googled like crazy and decided to make strawberry milk. Frozen strawberries blended with half original and half unsweetened original hemp milk. I felt like a true Starbucks Barista. One day, I’ll give her a shot of non-dairy whipped cream for fun.
As you might have guessed, she loves it and came back for more! Strawberry milk everyday. It’s healthy and naturally sweet! I am a happy camper. Another leap forward in the ongoing battle of eczema and allergies!
Just a week ago, I was shopping and saw coconut milk in the milk section. Maybe we can give that a try…
**Update to the Update: Now that she’s older, we use Original (sweetened) Hemp Milk without fruit. She still loves it!