A patient brought her 12-month-old baby to see me a few years ago. At 6 months of age he developed a nightly cough that didn’t seem to go away. He would go to sleep, and a couple of hours later, he would wake coughing. This would distress him, and keep him awake for a few hours, until he would eventually fall asleep, exhausted. It goes without saying, so was his mum! She had taken him to see many doctors and respiratory specialists, and none of them could find anything wrong. He will grow out of it they said. When she brought him to see me he hadn’t grown out of it and it had steadily gotten worse over time, particularly that current winter.
After checking there was no mould or damp conditions at home (which is a huge cause of coughs and colds) I then asked about what he was eating. It turned out his diet was full of foods that produce mucous in the body. Why do foods produce mucous? Well, a simple explanation is if a person is intolerant to a particular food, it will irritate the body and cause it to produce mucous. The mucous is an attempt by the body to combat the irritation. One example of a mucous producing food is dairy. Many people report they become snufflier in the nose after drinking milk, or eating ice cream or cream (yoghurt doesn’t seem to have as strong an effect). There are several common foods like dairy, that produce mucous in the body, and it seemed that this little bub’s diet was full of them. It was no coincidence that the cough started not long after his solids were introduced (at 6 months).
To add to my assessment of his health, I used the case history, combined with the baby’s family history, as well as an assessment of his iris (and his mum’s iris). His iris told me that he was prone to produce mucous in his body when he ate foods such as dairy.
So, I made a few simple changes to his diet, gave him some nutrients to get rid of the excess mucous in the short term, and voila – the cough that he had for 6 months which had been steadily getting worse each week, disappeared for good after 4 weeks! Needless to say, I was very happy with the outcome and so was his mum.
Since then I have seen a fair few babies with coughs. However people of any age can experience these health afflictions. I can help them, just like I did in this example.