Natural health: My baby has colic; Elderly friend has developed a shake in her hand

Natural health: My baby has colic; Elderly friend has developed a shake in her hand

I've a two-month-old baby who suffers from colic. I'm breastfeeding her and have stopped drinking tea and coffee but it seems to have made no difference. 

What would you recommend?

It sounds as if you are already on the right path with breastfeeding and looking into how food and drinks can affect your baby’s digestive system. 

Colic is very frustrating indeed, for mother and baby.

One of the most common food-related triggers for colic is dairy. 

Around a quarter of babies who are prone to colic have been found to have a sensitivity to dairy. 

You will need to cut out all dairy products for at least three weeks to determine whether or not this is an issue for your little one.

If dairy is playing a part in the colic symptoms, then rest assured it doesn’t necessarily mean your baby will have a lifelong sensitivity or intolerance to dairy. 

You should be able to safely introduce dairy after the age of 12 months, noting whether or not it leads to digestive discomfort.

Natural health: My baby has colic; Elderly friend has developed a shake in her hand
Picture: PA


For most babies, the 'colicky' phase tends to resolve itself by three months.

However, some children will continue to have troubles until they are six months old or more.

Other common triggers besides the tea, coffee, and dairy include chocolate, onions, garlic, brassicas (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts), beans and legumes, and spicy foods.

You can also make yourself a simple herbal infusion since you are breastfeeding, using fennel seeds, along with soothing herbals such as spearmint, lemon balm.

Fennel seeds are also good for milk production – caraway, anise, and dill seeds are all suitable substitutes.

Use a teaspoon of the seeds (and herbs if you choose to add them) per cup of boiling water and steep for 5-10 minutes.

Drink two to three cups daily as either a hot or cold brew.

Placing baby tummy down, and tucking the knees up while gently rubbing the back in a circular motion can help.

It was common in previous generations to recommend bouncing a baby with colic, but we now know that this can further aggravate the symptoms, so this is best avoided.

An elderly friend has developed a shake in her hand. Is there a remedy or supplement she could take?

Natural health: My baby has colic; Elderly friend has developed a shake in her hand

Shakes and tremors can have a multitude of root causes, so it is difficult to provide potential solutions without having more of a full history of your friend. 

There are some remedies that are useful in any case, protecting nerve and muscle health while helping to reduce inflammation.

The B vitamins, best taken together as a B-complex supplement, are a good place to start since they play a significant role in the health and function of the nervous system. 

To support muscle impulse transmission and nerve cell activity, magnesium is required. Take 250mg of magnesium, preferably with 500mg of calcium since these two minerals work in conjunction, twice daily. 

Healthy fats are essential to brain health and nerve function, whilst being wonderful anti-inflammatory agents.

Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA) is particularly beneficial for nerve health and is used for sufferers of multiple sclerosis (MS) to help reduce tremors when taken in doses between 500-1,000mg daily. 

Sugar, margarine, and alcohol all lower levels of an enzyme in the body responsible for converting omega 6 fatty acids to GLA, so these should be avoided or significantly reduced.


Good food sources high in levels of healthy fats include cold-water fish, nuts, seeds, coconut oil, and avocado. 

There are a number of herbs which can easily be made into a tea or infusion that may help to reduce the shaking by calming the nervous system, these include lavender, valerian, catnip, skullcap, passionflower, vervain, and chamomile.

Perhaps a close family member could massage your friend’s hand. 

This simple act can help to relax the muscles and nerves while offering a calming physical connection.

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