Anybody have any homemade recipes for 'Gripe Water'?

anilegna26August 21, 2007

My newborn is a bit fussy, as he has reflux and quite a bit of gas (haven't been able to figure out everything I should eliminate from my diet yet), so I remembered a friend from Canada once swore by "gripe water", but it's $14.00 per 4oz. at the health food store!!! Any recipes for me?

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You might be better off using something you made up yourself than buying a gripe water supplement, given the relative lack of oversight of supplements and rare reports of infection from contaminated ingredients.

According to this review most of the stuff used in commercial gripe water doesn't have any specific action against colic, which is a poorly defined condition anyway. The authors note that one of the big ingredients is alcohol, the quantity of which in some over the counter gripe water is the equivalent of five drinks in an adult (that much would definitely make me less fussy, though it sounds a bit excessive for an infant).

They recommend against any gripe water with alcohol or sodium bicarbonate, and suggest that the stuff may work if it has a soothing sweet taste.
Your pediatrician probably has dealt with this subject before and should OK any formula you plan to use.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2007 at 3:18PM
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Anilegna, I'm sure you are in contact with your health care provider and have brought the reflux to his/her attention. This can be a slight problem or a bigger problem that only they can diagnosis. For gas, it could definitely be something in your diet causing the little one discomfort. I'm assuming you are nursing. Avoid things that give YOU gas, such as beans, veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, etc. When my daughter was a newborn (27 years ago) and had colic, my mother recommended dill water. That's what she had given us when we were fussy newborns. Also known by some as gripe water. A weak tea of 1/8 tsp of dill seed (not dillweed)to 1 cup of water is steeped for 3-4 minutes, strained and cooled to room temp. Then, it is poured into a bottle and the baby just needs a few sips. Of course, you should run this by your pediatrician before trying it. Alternatively, you could drink a cup of dill seed tea yourself. 1 tsp/1 cup hot water for adults. Some babies have a difficulty getting all their burps up. The put-them-on-your-shoulder-and-pat isn't sufficient for some babies. Try laying the baby across your legs and gently rubbing his back. Use gentle strokes in an upward motion (towards the head). This helped tremendously with my daughter too. They get the firmness of your legs against their belly and the stroking facilitates the gas bubbles to move. You just had to put my sons upright and they would burp! For some babies, one burp is all they need, for others 3-4 are needed. Good luck with your new baby!

    Bookmark   August 21, 2007 at 4:37PM
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Judy_B_ON(Ontario 5B)

Having had a baby with colic, I feel for you. Gripe water, as Eric pointed out, is mostly alcohol which you don't want to give your baby.

Anyway, my son had colic for short periods every day and again from about 5:30pm to 7:00pm every night for the first three months and then off and on until five months. We tried every suggestion offered but nothing worked. Having read everything on colic I could find, I remain convinced that it has nothing to do with digestion but is due to maturing of neural system -- somehow the crying is something the baby NEEDS to do.

The most effective was the "football hold", baby tummy side down on the forearm, legs dangling on either side near the elbow, head cradled on the hand, walking and rocking. He eventually outgrew it to everyone's relief, but remained sensitive as a toddler with nightmares, abdominal migraine and was a frequent sleepwalker when older. Grew up to be a great teen!

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 10:36PM
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The real gripe water doesn't contain alcohol (that would make it a tincture). It's a tea made with the seeds of dill.

Pour a cup of boiling water onto 1-2 teaspoonfuls of the gently crushed (repeat, crushed) seeds and infuse for 10-15 minutes.

Give baby 1/2-1 teaspoon of the cooled liquid BEFORE a feed. Or if breastfeeding, take 1/2-1 cup yourself before each of baby's feeds. (It will also help production of breast milk, as well as baby's colic.)If possible, keep the frequency and amount of doses as low as possible for baby's comfort. The aim is to overcome a temporary problem, not to make it a necessary adjunct to meals. Baby's digestive system needs to learn to make its own adjustments over time.

You need to make a fresh batch every day, tossing out any left over from the previous day.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2007 at 12:54AM
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Thanks, everybody, I appreciate the help! =)

I did make sure it was an alcohol-free product before I bought it, so no worries there. =)
I just didn't ever want to have to buy it again, you know?
Ridiculously expensive stuff!

Seriously though, thanks a ton! I'm not much of a tea drinker myself, so I didn't know the parts of herbs per water to use, you know? And I couldn't just drink the dill tea myself cuz I already have an overabundant supply of milk as it is.
Which is also part of the gassy problem, but they say the milk will die down enough by 3 months or so, so we just have to hang in there a while longer. And I just have to keep eliminating food from my diet. =(

I've already ditched the foods you mentioned, herbalbetty, but there seem to be others that I haven't figured out yet...I'm really hoping that it's not one of the main ones, you know? But Celiac Disease does run in my family, and I've been telling myself that "I couldn't possibly have a problem with gluten...I'M just FINE", but now I've finally started the tests for it, so we'll see.

Babies really motivate you to take action, don't they. =)

Anyway, thanks again! I'm already sure it'll help cuz this store-bought stuff is amazing! =)=)=)

    Bookmark   August 24, 2007 at 2:40PM
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My daughter was colicky when she was that little. The dr recommended giving her chamomile tea. About a 4 oz serving, or the equivalent of one feeding. I used a little corn syrup to sweeten it (this was before we knew how bad it could be). Anyway, there were numerous benefits to this, such as my husband had the chance to feed and bond with his daughter, she usually was significantly less fussy afterwards, and I got a little downtime to relax.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2007 at 3:30PM
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here is a recipe for homemade gripe water. all the ingredients are GRAS (generally regarded as safe). the ingredients are known to ease stomach discomfort in both children and adults.

if the discomfort persists examine the diet for culprits. milk, soy, eggs, citrus and wheat are common causes of sensitivities...

Here is a link that might be useful: homemade gripe water

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 2:28PM
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You might try eliminating milk and dairy products from your diet as that can be a problem for some nursing babies. Try it for a couple of weeks and see if there is any change in baby's behavior.

All the best, I've been there and understand. :-)

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 1:49AM
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