I'm Shannon. In December, 2006, I became a mom. When my daughter was about 3-4 months old, she started reacting to foods. Which is interesting, because she wasn't eating any - this was all through my milk. At 6 months, it got bad enough that I couldn't ignore it anymore, and the constant diarrhea with strings of blood was enough to convince the doctors that it was something that needed to be addressed. I cut out gluten, dairy and soy, and it went away immediately. We were at baseline. Trialing gluten, per the pediatric GI specialist's suggestion brought the diarrhea back full force - and it's been near to impossible to get to baseline since, despite cutting out other foods left and right.
My mama bear instincts went into full force, and I wanted to know why my baby was reacting to foods that I ate. I went on a mission to understand food sensitivities and how to prevent them - because doing this all again with the next kid was not a happy prospect. And I still can't wrap my head around the concept that my daughter could have such a restricted diet for her entire life.
I was already doing all the 'right' stuff - my daughter was born at home, no interventions, no vaccinations, no early solids. I ate a healthy diet of home-cooked whole foods with real butter. We had joined a CSA and were cooking seasonal foods from scratch. No household chemicals stronger than vinegar and laundry detergent. I wore her in a sling all day long, and she was happy and thriving. She was at the top of the height charts and far and away above the weight charts. But why in the world was she reacting? None of the normal stuff fit our situation, so I was forced to keep looking. And keep looking. And keep looking. Eventually, I stumbled across getting my MTHFR gene tested. While I was trying to understand what the results meant (I'm heterozygous for both the A1298C and C677T polymorphisms), the stars aligned and I discovered the world of nutritional biochemistry. It's complicated. But so fun and interesting.
Throughout this whole process, I've learned a bunch. A lot of it, I had to fight for, and a lot of the information out there is contradictory. I have a B.S. in engineering from Harvey Mudd, with a lot of science, and a bit of psychology. The majority of my work experience is in tutoring. I love problem solving, and I need to know the 'why' before I'll follow any advice. Early on, I decided I wanted to pave the way to make this easier for other mamas dealing with similar issues.
I'm currently in school. I'm taking prerequisites so that I can start a M.S. degree in nutrition. I want to emphasize that I'm not a professional (though here in California, I could call myself one), and I'm still learning a LOT. If you would like to help nudge me in one direction or another, I've provided a wish list of textbooks.