Both of my children were born with a faint blue vein on the bridge of their noses, and like any sufficiently paranoid mother, I would squint and study it trying to figure out what it could possibly be… a bruise, a birth mark, something else? For years in the Chinese medicine community I heard whisperings of this blue vein being a reliable diagnostic tool for predicting a sensitivity to sugar. I took note, and have used this as a good excuse to limit sweets in my children's diets.
This weekend at a pediatric acupuncture seminar with Raven Lang, the blue vein finally got a name: “Sugar Bug,” or in Japanese, “Kanmushi,” a syndrome in Japanese medicine. Sugar Bug babies may cry more, have more issues with sleep, and – my personal favorite – shriek. These children have a propensity to more temper tantrums and potentially attention and hyperactivity issues when they get older if proper care is not taken to divert this tendency along the way.
Why a Sugar Bug occurs is unclear, but my theory is that it has to do with the quality of gut flora (or digestive qi or energy) we inherit from our parents at the time of birth. (Stay tuned for a future post on how to bequeath healthy gut flora to your future children!). In Chinese medicine, the digestion system (Spleen energy) and the nervous system (Liver energy) are interdependent, so it would stand to reason that a Sugar Bug child with sensitive digestion would also have a sensitive nervous system.
Regardless of the ‘why', the presence of a Sugar Bug on your beautiful baby is not a reason to panic. The faint blue mark is barely visible to others, and can be a major blessing in disguise…
If you see a blue vein, don't panic!
This diagnostic sign is much like a curvy road sign. It warns you to drive ahead with caution to prevent an accident. The Sugar Bug also provides us with some convenient street sign warnings – that most parents should follow anyway!
- Limit your child's consumption of sugar (especially processed candy, cakes, and other sweets), but also monitor ‘natural' sweets like honey, maple syrup, agave and even fruit. Fruit juice is just as sugary as a candy bar and should be avoided. Foods that quickly turn into sugar in the body such as bread, pasta, rice, and potatoes should be consumed only in moderation.
- Create clear boundaries and routines for a Sugar Bug baby/child. These children should have consistent rhythm to their day with meals, snacks, bath, and bed time occurring like clockwork as much as possible. Sugar Bug babies should not stay up late or skip naps.
- Mellow out – Sugar Bug kids do not need extra stimulation, so limit the amount of beeping toys, flashing lights, TV shows, loud parties, and other overwhelming stimuli that he/she is exposed to.
- Load up on nutrients – A nutrient dense diet is essential for Sugar Bug babies. Essential fatty acids from fish (in our house we use this fermented cod liver oil), B vitamins, amino acids, and zinc are all important brain foods that will reduce the propensity for ADD/ADHD down the road. Whenever possible provide these nutrients from real food. Here are some tricks on getting the kids to take fermented cod liver oil.
- Tune in – Make a mental note when your child has challenges. If melt-downs tend to follow a particular food, skip it for awhile. If he/she seems to be getting cranky in the afternoons, make bedtime earlier. Around the age of 4 or 5 most blue veins on the nose bridge will fade, but your child may still be sensitive to sugar and over-stimulation.
- Get preventative care – Find a good pediatric acupuncturist that can work with your child monthly to monitor and treat any minor imbalances that may arise in order to prevent bigger issues down the road. Practicing preventative care is great advice for any parent. Don't think of the Sugar Bug an omen of doom, just your baby's way of making sure you keep your parenting skills sharp and promote health down the road.
Have your own Sugar Bug baby?
Let me know in the comments below!
Very interesting! My son has that blue vein and I have always wondered about it. I do have a question, though. The vein is already structurally in place at the time of birth, so how can it be affected by the flora a child inherits? I took special care to populate my birth canal with good flora and am fairly certain I succeeded. Regarding temperment, my son is very mellow. BUT – he was an awful sleeper! Turns out, though, that he was tongue-tied (http://www.mommypotamus.com/tongue-tied/) and therefore hungry all the time. Once we had it corrected he because sleeping almost through the night. Maybe the sugar bug pops up when there are issues with soft tissues (aka tongue ties)? It’s a theory.
Oh, and although he is calm most of the time he DOES love a good shrieking match with his big sis 🙂
Your son is a perfect example of a Sugar Bug baby who’s digestive system was properly nurtured (no sugar or junk even before conception), and as a result, his nervous system had smooth sailing from the get go. In Chinese medical theory the Spleen meridian (aka digestive energy) is responsible for “holding blood in vessels” and weak digestive energy is associated with varicose veins, hemorrhoids, and bruising easily.
As for tongue tie, as far as I know it is not linked to any pathology in Chinese Medicine (perhaps another reader may know different – please comment!), though it certainly contributes to a baby not being able to get the nourishment he needs on his own. This is an instance of when conventional medicine (to correct the tie) is a blessing! Anyway, keep up the great work, mama!
My daughter is 22 months and she also have blue vein. She was never a good sleeper but I thought it might be e breastfeeding so I stopped when she turned 21 months. She sleeps better but I have a question for you and will really appreciate if you could answer it. You mentioned in your article that in order to avoid ADD OR ADHD we should be watching what we are feeding the kids ( which I do she eat wholesome natural organic food only), but is it something common that kids get when they are born with blue vein? Or is it just a possibility like any other kid can have?
Nate Nadler says
If you want to avoid ADHD or ADD, treat your kids well, keep them away from the computer, and stop obsessing over miniscule details. Now.
Kids are born with ADHD (ADD is a subtype of ADHD (in Canada) ). Limiting your child’s computer time and treating them well will not stop your child from “getting” ADHD. If they have it, it may help the symptoms, but nothing you do will stop them from “getting” it. Kids with ADHD have “thinner brain tissue in the areas of the brain associated with attention.” This cannot be caused, yet is something you are born with. I’m not saying that there isn’t a link between children with the “sugar bug” and ADHD, but to suggest that you can avoid ADHD by treating them well is in my opinion wrong. It also helps spread stigma, as many people see a child with ADHD and blame the parents for not parenting correctly. Parenting style plays a role with how children live with ADHD, but even the best parents have children with ADHD.
Sounds like you are already doing a great job! Keep up the good work and keep them away from food dyes and additives, look into fermented foods, fermented cod liver oil, probiotics and essential oils for healing:)
How would you get an 18 month old to take cod liver oil? Also, what would be a good probiotic to give them?
Hi Katie – Thank you for your question. You can read how I get my kids to take their FCLO here and see my favorite infant probiotic here.
Digestive enzymes like bromelain
We all have selective add/adhd
No dairy and no iron unless thru food
My son is now 9mos old, and his blue vein showed up around 2 months old. He has NEVER been a good sleeper- in fact, I recall wondering why my 2 week old son wasn’t sleeping like a newborn should! We are finally establishing a routine, and naps are much smoother, but he still wakes 3-4x per night just to be soothed. This night-time waking wasn’t always the case; he only woke once to nurse from 4-6 months old, then teething happened. I’ve always said he has a “short-fuse” when it comes to his temper, which I readily admit he probably gets from me (except maybe this “sugar bug”?) He nurses like a champ, and hasn’t had issues since his tongue tie was clipped at 2 weeks old. He does seem to like his carbs and fruit now that he has started solids, and I’ve long considered myself a sugar addict. Additionally, he has been constipated twice in the last 2 weeks (5 days between BMs) and we aren’t sure what is contributing though we have cut back on cereals and yogurt. I guess my question is, how do I get him back on the right track?
Remove dairy and iron supplements
Kimberly Boldrini-Senn says
I am a Chinese medicine practitioner and my son has a blue vein as well. He was c-section after 44 hrs of labor (posterior position and head too large to progress). I found another site showing possible link to cranial /tongue tie issues. We did cranial sacral therapies for the first 4 mts and one practitioner found a tongue tie, but he had no feeding issues. Main issue is sleeping on his own. In my research I found a Chinese herbal formula (blue poppy pediatrics – little pearl) which addresses this “sugar bug”. It has to do with low spleen Qi. This decrease will lead to digestive issues, desire for sweets, hard time calming self. I think there can be some overlap here.
From the herbal formula info: Signs & symptoms of spleen vacuity include: In infants and small children, spleen vacuity is endemic. If spleen vacuity is pronounced, then there may be:A blue vein between the eyebrows;Poor appetite;Fatigue;A tendency to loose stools; Signs & symptoms of damp heat include: A robust, well-fed or over-fed baby;Cradle cap with yellow crusts and/or fluid exudate;Red facial papules or a red rash in the creases of the elbows and knees;Stubborn diaper rash;Possible blisters;Possible weeping or seepage from lesions;Dark urine;Foul-smelling stools Signs & symptoms of food stagnation include: A history of feeding on demand;Vomiting milk directly after eating;An engorged index finger vein at the wind gate;Bad breath.
You just described my son who is now 4. His energy is so over the top and he is loud. We’ve had his hearing checked. I will be doing more research to see what I can do from this point forward. Thanks for sharing.
how can we try to treat spleen vacuity?
Jessica seaton says
Our son has had the blue vein since birth and was also tongue tied.
My son also has the blue vein, didn’t sleep well and was tongue tied. I am sure there is more than coincidence here. He does not have a proclivity for sweets, he doesn’t like soda, he is not “hyper”. His tongue tie was “cured” by exercises as he learned to talk and voila it is gone now. He is very computer savvy and video game oriented. He is set in his ways and regiments are better for him, type A personality possibly?
My son also has the vein, and I’m worried a out the sugRbug,,my problem is that my son gets constipated all the time Nd our ped told us to use brown sugar in half his bottles, what should we do
Hi Jolene – I am surprised your pediatrician recommended putting brown sugar in his bottles! Perhaps this is because black strap molasses can help with constipation. I would probably try other methods first (abdominal massage, cranial sacral therapy, Chinese herbs) before trying molasses, but personally I would never put brown sugar in a baby’s bottle – sugar bug or not.
My son was constipated from birth (only went every two weeks or so) and I was told this was fine as he was a breastfed baby.
Then he started food and I too was told to put brown sugar in his bottles!! We also ended up on Movicol five times a day and lactulose three times a day by the time he was three years old (which allowed him to go to the toilet once a week).
Eventually we heard about the GAPS diet (cutting all sugar) and decided to do it because my son also has ASD and SPD. Low and behold the constipation was cured in less than a fortnight and he was off all meds.
Brown sugar nowadays is simply white sugar with molasses added in… You’d be betternoff to just put molasses in his bottle them brown sugar.
There has to be something more here. My two oldest sons both have this blue vein and although not tongue tied, they both have an extremely tight frenulum on the top lip. My oldest’s effected speech and we had it laser clipped. If they get sugar, its like a monster has been awakened and they want more, more, more!! I am going to research this some more. Thanks for the info!
Omg, I have two boys too brandy, and both have this blue vein and I have always wondered about it! The youngest had the same surgery as one of your sons! His speech was affected and and he had a very tight upper lip! I am trying to eat organic and really limit sugar! Best of luck!!
My son has the blue vein and also has a tight or abundant frenulum. He was insatiable from birth (breastfed at first). as an infant, had incredible “fits” which we credited toward reflux. He is 2 1/2 now and is very ACTIVE and still throws these fits(somewhat normal in the 2s but more wild than that) He only wants to eats carbs and has issues with many textures. he is a BIG kid ( 38″ and 37lbs). I do all I can to limit the carbs but he WILL NOT eat and reacts to this. I would love more insight!
Tongue tie has been linked to the inability to process folic acid properly in some early studies. Pregnant women should look for folate supplements instead of folic acid. It’s all linked up to digestion.
Shirley Tramm says
Try to read the book “potatoes not Prozac”
Remove dairy and iron supplements
My son was born with a sugar bug. He is now 5 and has just been diagnosed with PANDAS (autoimmune response causing behaviourial issues anxiety, OCD etc following a strep-a infection) . He also has the MTHfr gene, as do I. Naturopath has advised to totally avoid sugar. Also was born tongue tied.
My son had terrible terrible constipation until I removed gluten. You might want to try it for a week or 2 and see how he does. My son;s appetite increased, his bowels are regular and normal, and he is overall doing great.
We used a tiny amount of prune juice when my little one was constipated (during a brief supplementation period because of my health).
Elizabeth Johnson says
My kids have issues with constipation and I just put coconut oil in the bottles. I make WAP’s raw formula and add more coconut oil then the recipe calls for. You can just put a tsp. or so in an 8oz bottle.
It will grease up the pipes, and get’s things all slippery.
Also the herb Slippery Elm (powdered) works great too. You can put that in the bottle, or some yogurt.
Don’t listen to that doctor, brown sugar is horrible advice. just goes to show doctors know nothing about nutrition.
Most babies are lactose and OR iron intolerant…..i have five children. A holistic Dr once told me the blue was indication of allergies, ingested and airborne.. Take your babies off milk base formula, if you’re breast feeding, stop all dairy and don’t take iron unless thru food.. Iron is dangerous! dairy isn’t like back on the farm
Brown sugar, no! Common suggestion with better alternatives. If baby is breastfed and having hard stools, this is a problem that needs medical attention. If baby is formula fed or eating solids with breastmilk, organic no added sugar prune juice is better, and just a tiny bit, or dried prunes if baby is old enough. If Breastfeeding it’s always helpful to focus on your own gut health in order to help baby. Fermented foods with probiotics, avoiding alcohol and sugar yourself is a good start.
If you’re breast feeding stop all dairy and iron supplements.. If bottle fed use low iron or switch to soy especially if constipated.. For tummy pain an once of peppermint tea will be a miracle
Hmmmm….def not a coincidence. My son(s) – there are 3 – are all tongue tied (and 2 are lip tied), they have the blue vein, and the eldest (5yo) is ADHD…..and ofcourse none of them slept/sleep well.
Tongue tie is a tight frenulum. How did it “go away”? I think you mean abcense of speech issues?
Sorry, should read absence
My son also has a blue vein and he had severe tongue and lip tie (discovered at a year thanks to Mommypotamous – thank you!). He is 17 months now and certainly seems to have the personality traits of the blue vein as well. I was on GAPS the entire time I was pregnant with him (taking biokult daily as well as preparing the birth canal) and we have led a very strict grain free traditional diet with only honey as a sweetener for about three years. Although I have Celiacs (gluten free for 8 years) and I do not think I totally recovered nutritionally from my daughters birth who is 3 1/2 and does not have a blue vein but did have severe lip tie. I should note that my son also had severe cradle cap which he still has to this day, to me that also points to a gut flora issue.
Christi – thanks so much for sharing!
Have you tried Vani cream Shampoo. They sell it at most pharmacy’s. My dd started getting cradle cap on her head at age 4. It was so bad chunks of her hair was coming out with it. She also has eczema. We switched her to this hypoallergenic shampoo and conditioner and it hasn’t come back, except for one time when we ran out of the shampoo. Most Walgreens and Target carry it. Sometimes the shampoo and conditioner are only carried behind the pharmacy counter and you have to ask staff for it. PS. Both my children had the blue vein. They both have problems with too much sugar. One has IBS-D and the other IBS-C. My son’s tolerance for sugar is greater than my daughters. My daughter has fructose malabsorption. Son has problems with fructans.
I forgot to mention, both of my kids also have the tongue ties and the upper lip tie, along with having the blue vein.
Hey there Dkaj, when my son was born I decided to not use any shampoo, just clean lukewarm water to wash his hair. In fact I did not allow the nurses to bathe him in the hospital either-why make him wet and cold for even one second, he was perfectly clean when he came out of me. No joke and we have the photos to prove it too:)) The only soap I ever used to wash his body-and even then we are talking minimal amounts like a drop or two- was Dr. Bronner’s Baby Soap. He had minimal amount of cradle cap, really it seemed like dry skin on his head, so I decided to start massaging a bit of Olive or Jojoba Oil into his head prior to a bath. Once in the bath I would put a warm wash cloth on his head a few times-his hair was never oily after the bath just soft and healthy looking. After a few times of doing this the dry cradle cap like skin on his head disappeared. In case people are not aware Jojoba oil has the exact PH levels as that of our skin-the oil is almost exactly like our own naturally occuring body oil and to top it off Jojoba oil contains Myristic Acid which is an anti-inflammatory agent. That’s why inflamed skin is always calmed after an application of Jojoba oil. I also noticed that my son had some red dry splotches(best way I can describe them) on his skin that seemed to be more obvious after a bath. Definitely was not exzema, and we used minimal amounts of toxin free laundry detergent on his clothing, live in a house with all hardwood floors and use no chemicals to clean with so I went off all gluten, dairy and egg whites when he was 4 months. I eat only honey, cane sugar, etc., for sweeteners so sugar was not an issue. After 2 weeks his skin cleared completely. After 3 months I introduced each item back into my diet-gluten was the one. If I eat it he gets rashes and I get breakouts on my skin too. Anyways, try some oils and warm soaks in the tub with your daughter, no shampoo and see how it turns out:))
Debbie Haggard says
Cane sugar is a healthier sounding word that health food companies like to use. All granulated sugar is either from cane or sugar beets. Some cane sugar is less refined, but if you have a sugar sensitivity, should still be avoided and causes all the same things such as inflammation.
Christi, do you know of Donna Gates? She founded the Body Ecology Diet. She wrote an article about cradle cap which might interest you for your son. I use the B.E.D. and it is right on. I’m guessing her thoughts about cradle cap are, too.
Sorry, I forgot to leave the link to Donna Gates’ cradle cap article: http://bodyecology.com/articles/what-is-cradle-cap-really-2-natural-remedies-to-restore-balance#.Unk–RComRN
Cradle cap is a sign of what is going on in the gut. Despite what conventional docs say, it is a sign of candida overgrowth in the gut. That must be dealt with. Body ecology is great for dealing with candida overgrowth, but it can be very acidic and overwhelming to the body’s buffering minerals and can leave you depleted of minerals. SHouldn’t over do ferments and probiotics
Sarah Z says
I cannot thank you ladies enough for this article and the article on being tongue tied. All the pieces of the puzzle have come together for me as to why my little man has been having the issues he does. You and all the other wonderful bloggers I follow are just too wonderful for words for all the absolutely invaluable information you share. You are helping our family to be healthier and happier and I am trying to pay it forward by sharing what I can with others who are open to receive it. Thank you so so much.
Odd. All my boys have it. But not my girls. 3 boys and 2 girls. They don’t throw tantrums. Never big criers. Except when hungry. They all amazingly slept through the night at 3 months old. I have very lucky for that . All of my kids have allergies though. And eczema and respiratory issues when winter is here
Wow where was this article 11yrs ago when i had my daughter. This explains alot of her behavior. I just thought she was a terror lol
Rachel R. says
Lots of the MTHFR mamas report Sugar Bug veins, along with other physical characteristics (like tongue ties). So I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it’s methylation-related.
I would guess tongue ties were not common enough, historically, to have warranted a place in traditional Chinese medicine.
Leigh Ann Scheibe says
Of my kids have the sugar bug. From my understanding it is a midline defect like lip/tongue tie, sacral dimple, raspberry on the forehead and raspberry on the nape of the neck. It’s linked with MTHFR. ????
Hi my baby has the blue vein and I too thought nothing of it. She is not a good sleeper but what I’m wondering is what is tongue tied?
Check out MTHFR Gene mutation. Tongue tie and this blue vein are both signs of it as well as stork bites. Kids with MTHFR gene mutation have a harder time detoxing heavy metals
Tongue tie and sugar bug, you should look into mthfr gene mutation both are signs for it.
Ann Marie @ CHEESESLAVE says
Oh boy. Kate had that.
She’s always been super hyper, too. Like a boy. She started tearing the heads off Barbies when she was 2. She didn’t just cut the Barbies hair, she cut MY hair one time when I was sleeping.
I remember I took a picture of her when she was about 9 months old and her little foot was kicking so fast, it was a blur. My brother said, “Uh oh, look at that foot.”
She loves sugar, sweets and carbs of all kinds, she’s addicted to computer games, and she is a total night owl.
I’m terrible about getting her to bed on time because I have to work so much. She won’t go to sleep without me. Hopefully we can rectify this in the coming weeks when we hire a FT nanny.
Hi there! Gluten, all dairy and junk that is heavily dyed will affect children in ways unexplainable. Try an elimination diet, and take out everything. Just feed your children whole raw fruits and veggies (non-GMO) straight organic and I can guarantee you will notice a 100% turn around in a positive way! If it doesn’t grow out of the ground it shouldn’t be put into their mouths.
We have struggled for 11 years to figure out my daughter’s health, and finally took her to a holistic physician and got the answers we have been searching for. She has a gluten and dairy intolerance and her liver and spleen aren’t functioning correctly. After eliminating gluten/dairy 6 days in she could breathe through her nose again, and her constipation ended. She has lost 20 lbs. And she feels so great! She would get bouts of hyperactivity after she ate certain junk. Now we are just working on her liver and spleen.
Ann Marie @ CHEESESLAVE says
PS: I’m the same way — guilty on all charges. I used to stay up and watch Saturday Night Live when I was 8.
Heather Brandt says
Our son we adopted from Russia in 2008 has this and he is hyper/impulsive and sensitive to so many foods (following mono it’s like his digestive system went kerplunk). We’re about to put him on GAPS intro diet b/c removing gluten and grains and soy and dairy have not totally cleared up is tummy issues (probiotics have helped some). He takes GABA and 5HTP and cod liver oil and a couple of other things to help with him neurologically. He’s a bright boy but emotionally still lagging behind his 4 1/2 years.
How old was your sob when you adopted and was it difficult to adopt from Russia? We like to have one more kid so our kid would be lonely.
Heather – good luck with the GAPS diet!! It’s hard work at first, but gets easier and it’s totally worth it.
We are 20 months in and pretty much totally healed! We’re going to do the full two years to be sure, but my kids and I are sooooooooooooooooooooooooo much better.
As of January of this year, it is no longer possible for an American to adopt a Russian child…. I’m assuming you’re an American. Perhaps this will change, as it is a very politically driven move by Putin, but as it stands, U.S. citizens are barred from adopting any child in Russia.
That makes sense, thank you! I doubt the tongue tie is related now that you’ve explained more . . . I think I was trying to make him fit the typical sugar baby profile and fussiness from being hungry is all I could connect! Side note: Though ties have been around for all of recorded history they seem to be becoming more frequent. Some studies link them to chemical exposure, which I know I had a lot of years ago when I remodeled our house. Ugh. 🙁
Michelle M. says
How about a Vit A deficiency as a potential cause of tongue tie? Our boy had a mild tongue tie which our midwife snipped at 2wks. He also has an underbite. I wonder if it is all part of the lower jaw not forming properly due to lack of nutrient building blocks that fully form the facial structure. Thoughts?
I have seen a number of kanmushi veins in young children under 6yo…
I also wonder what the faint red rash/patch on the skin between the eyebrows might mean. I’ve seen a lot of those in children over the past three years. The children are in the 0-6yrs range. Any ideas??
chelsea martinez says
Michelle I was told by a midwife that those marks the red patch between the eyebrows are “birth” marks. They are marks that occured during the birth of a child, likely when the head is coming through the pelvis. The skin gets rubbed on the pelvic bone. One of my friends says that 3 of her 5 babies had them because her labors are so fast that it’s just a little rough. These thoughts are also applied to the “stork bite” on the back of almost all babies necks.
His is not a red mark, it’s a blue vein.
She Was Addressing Michelle Who Had Mentioned A Red Rash
My daughter had the blue vein between her eyes. She was an emergency c-section.
Rachel R. says
I don’t find that explanation to be compelling. For one thing, neither of my precipitous labor babies have this, but my son (who was not born so quickly) does. For another, as has been noted, this particular mark seems to be becoming more common. Fast labors are not becoming more common. If anything, they’re becoming less common, AND more and more babies are being born by cesarean. So that just doesn’t add up, to me.
My daughter has a small red mark on forehead between eye brown, we were told it was a birth mark. She has the blue vein across the bridge of her nose. She also has a red patch “birth mark” on the back of her neck in the hair line. Are they related? What is it? How do I treat this?
Leigh Ann Scheibe says
All of these are midline issues. They are often related to MTHFR. My kiddos have had these too ????
none of my kiddos had the blue vein. But I do have a daughter, now 14 years old, who is ‘tongue tied.’ We opted not to have it clipped as it wasn’t causing any difficulty nursing or later speaking. It is an inherited difference, just like blue eyes or freckled skin. Most kids who were born “tied” were clipped, even before the parents knew, as part of “routine baby care” in previous decades. Most doctors now take a wait and see approach. I was a “clipped” baby as were 6 of my 9 siblings. Most of us have at least one tongue tied child, some clipped some not. Its not a defect, just a difference. 🙂
i didnt notice my baby’s blue line at birth, but at one year old it has disappeared on the left side and is fading on the right side. he doesnt eat grains, starchessoy, chocolate, dairy, corn, and only eats fruits between meals, never with protein. guzzles meat broths-which are healing to the entire system. we are doing a GAPS based diet. he was also TT.
Sarah Dickinson says
Sorry this is off topic, but Lou, why never eating fruit with a protein? And in general, why does everyone stay away from grains? Because they turn to sugar in the body? Thanks all, my youngest boy has that vein. I am interested in this conversation! (and overwhelmed by all that we have to do to prepare and protect our children!)
The grain thing is partly because it turns to sugar in the body, but there are a few other issues too.
One is that many people don’t tolerate gluten very well, particularly if they have a damaged gut. It can get into the blood stream and becomes an opiate called ‘glutomorphin’ which is not good.
It can also cause inflammation in the gut and lead to damage.
It’s also because they (and many other foods like nuts) contain something called phytic acid which is an enzyme inhibitor. Enzyme inhibitors (like phytic acid) are in nuts and grains and seeds to prevent their vitamins being wasted before the seed germinates. This means it actually prevents your body from using the vitamins and nutrients available, so you’d be better off eating half and apple, for example, than eating a whole apple and a biscuit.
Ashley Wilcoxson says
Very interesting! My son has it and I never paid to much attention to it. Luckily, he is 5 now and we haven’t had any of the issues listed above. We have never been to an acupuncturist (which we will in the future) but we do go to a chiropractor on a weekly basis. Thanks for the info!
Fascinating. My youngest has this and I had never given it much thought. I have a fairly prominent vein below my left eye and thought it was just a physical quirk. He does have a propensity to have tantrums and doesn’t sleep well at all compared to my two older boys. Thanks for sharing!
Interesting. I think my younger daughter was born with this but not my older. They are both very intense kids but the older one is more intense (I hadn’t fixed my diet when she was born). My younger dd has a tendency to shriek though. Neither one sleeps very well.
Both of my girls have tongue ties and I plan to get them clipped asap. We are seeing a Dr about it in 2 days in fact. My dh also has a tongue tie and I may. We are all getting them evaluated. My older dd’s permanent teeth are coming in very crooked. My DH can be very difficult to understand when he speaks quickly. My younger dd has loads of digestive problems and her front teeth are being effected already. We are hopeful that it may help everyone to have it clipped since it can impact all of those issues. I almost wish that it would have caused breast feeding issues with my girls and been addressed at birth instead of now that they are old enough that it could be a very big deal.
I know this isn’t about tongue tie but since it came up and is on my mind…
All babies have this blue vein… it’s just more visible on some than on others. All of your tips for handling “sugar bug” babies are good solid common-sense for raising any baby, though. 🙂
Hi Kalera – Yes, all baby’s have the vein, but the visibility is what makes it a Sugar Bug, or as the Japanese call it, Kanmushi.
Jo @ Jo's Health Corner says
My daughter has the blue vein and she used to crash if she didn’t eat frequently. We added more protein and reduced the carbs and her blood sugar got stabilized, and she didn’t crash or crave carbs much anymore. Now we eat Paleo and we don’t have any problems with her at all.
Julie Matthews says
I work with children with autism (I’m a nutritionist). I’m hearing this blue vein is a common experience for many of them, and of course we know they have lots of gut issue, yeast, sugar cravings. This is very interesting – thanks for sharing!
Emily, I was just thinking that same thing. Of course we all have veins in the same (close) places, but this totally makes sense that some are more visible and are an earmark for sensitivities to things. My son is totally reactive to sugar. His sugar bug was VERY faint. I actually had to look back at photos after reading this article to see if he had it, because I discovered a long time ago his sensitivity. He was a very calm baby, almost too calm. But now as a 5 year old, sometimes I see some more of these signs that are associated with having a sugar bug in him. Really interesting information, I’ll have to look into it some more. I’ve never taken him to a chiropractor or an acupuncturist, but maybe it’s time!
My 5 year old has a very prominent blue vein across the bridge of his nose, I thought it was a birthmark. My son sleeps well, isn’t a tantrum thrower, actually his teachers comment on what a calm child he is. He doesn’t like cakes, doesn’t mind a bickies or a bit of chocolate now and then, absolutely loves his yoghurt, something I’ve never had to push on him. The only thing that worries me is that his father is an insulin dependant diabetic and I have type II, he was born with extremely low blood sugar levels and was given glucose straight away. I’m petrified that as well as being Autistic he’ll develop type 1 diabetes. I’ll have to look into this further, it’s very interesting.
This is such a timely post! Many family members have commented on my daughters blue veins on her forehead……needless to say we are on the GAPS diet for MANY gut imbalances and nervous system problems (a horrible sleeper for one!) My question to you is this; while googling kanmushi I came across a textbook that talks about therapies for these kids to do….wondering if you know anything about that/anything in your practice you do (besides what is listed) to help out? Thanks again for the post, I will be sharing this with others!
Sarah Mueller says
What was the website or textbook. i would love to know
and maybe all our kids have the blue vein there because our modern culture all to some degree has gut dysbiosis due to environment/diet not being what it was 100-200+ years ago.
Wow Emily, this is good to know! Now I want to look back on my kids’ baby pictures and see if any of them had this! I think GAPS would help with this, for sure! Thanks for sharing! 🙂
I’m an acupuncturist and my youngest son has the blue vein. I learned in school that it’s a sign of digestive deficiency. He definitely has sugar issues, much more so than my first two boys. And I noticed that with my pregnancy that I was craving sugar much more than with previous pregnancies (I also gained more weight with him as well). A good, easy therapy to do on children is moxabustion. It is a warming therapy that many children enjoy (you can do it on them when they are sleeping if they don’t like it). Acupuncture is so helpful for gaps kids, it is great for strengthening the spleen system and calming the liver system. I also believe the tongue tie is related to digestive health (of the mother or father). Our holistic dentist recommends frenectomy so that everything will be aligned in terms of their cranium.
Thanks for all the real food blogs, you all have helped our family and my practice so much!
Thanks for sharing, Kyung! I haven’t been doing much moxa for kids in my practice – what methods do you like to use?
Tongue tie is a midline defect caused by a folate defincicy. Most people get their folate from folic acid (synthetic) in prenatal vitamins. However some people have a genetic problem where they can’t make folate folic acid. Thus the deficiency is inherited, not the tongue tie.
Laura Haynes says
Tongue tie is fire- probably heart or San Jaio
Interesting but I just can’t buy it. I have a daughter DX with Asperger’s and ADHD and she would fit all the “Sugar Bug” criteria however it’s my other daughter who actually has the vein. But she has great attention ability at 2 1/2 years old, she does not have hyperactive episodes, etc. Now my Aspie kids does have two MTHFR mutated genes related to detoxing the body so my other daughter likely carries these as well, or maybe just one. My daughter with the vein does have a good gut system though, when compaired to my Asperger’s daughter so maybe that makes all the difference.
Hi Becky – As with any diagnostic information, from blood tests to the color of the tongue, the blue vein is just information that we can take or leave. It sounds your daughter with the blue vein and healthy gut may not be exhibiting symptoms because of her healthy digestion. Keep up the great work. 🙂
Becky — maybe that is because the visibility of veins has absolutely nothing to do with the digestive or nervous system? Because this entire post is nothing but the kind of middle-age superstition that should properly be laughed at?
Thanks for sharing your opinion. There are many diagnostic tools of Oriental medicine that modern medicine disciples will quickly dismiss and laugh at. But keep in mind that traditional medicine has been in practice for thousands of years with much efficacy, whereas western medicine has been in practice for not much more than a century and has many failings. And while there are many wonderful things about western medicine, we would be fools to dismiss thousands of years of wisdom as merely laughable.
Does the vein have to be on the bridge of the nose? I have a daughter that has a very visible blue vein on her cheek. She does have some of these symptoms. Just curious. Thanks.
Jessica, my understanding is that the Sugar Bug is only on the nose bridge.
My daughter has the blue vein! She’s not tongue tied but she was born with an upper lip tie, receding chin (more than is normal), and a high arch palate.
Well she probably is tongue tied, if she has a receding chin and high arched palate. Look up ‘posterior tongue tie’. It’s likely your diagnosis was done by someone who didn’t know their stuff… Paediatricians and ENTs are notoriously under-informed when it comes to tongue tie. Something like 98% of upper lie tied kids also have a posterior tongue tie.
Dean Ouellette says
Hmm interesting, now I am going to have to go ask my wife if any of our kids had the blue vein. Yea I should know that, but im a dad, what do I know?
amazing! My son to a t!
Interesting! This is very timely as we have been dealing with shrieking tantrums the past couple of months and my daughter definitely has the blue vein on the bridge of her nose. She also didn’t sleep through the night until she was over a year old, cried a lot as a baby, her digestion is off, etc. This definition fits her and gives me a good place to start from to work on managing things better. Thank you!
Jenn Jennings says
My acupuncturist added this comment – “It can also show up as green. Another sign to look at is the child’s pointer finger underside behind the middle knuckle. My ped class was so fascinating.. It’s all 9/10 times a digestive root issue. But the dynamics of parents play a huge role.”
I’d already forgotten that my son had this! He’s 7 now, but when he was a baby it was so prominent I constantly got comments from people that he had some food stuck on him still, or they thought it was a bruise. He does have digestive issues – sensitive to dairy then and now. He is very calm-natured, but had a horrific time sleeping in his early years. It’s been hard to get him really good nutrition as my husband’s vegetarian and allergic to eggs, so we haven’t ventured into GAPS-land yet. And I get a lot of my good stuff from grass-fed dairy, which my son doesn’t tolerate. He does like eggs and fish, though! We keep sugar pretty limited, but we do allow a small dose on a daily basis. He self-regulates really well. A bigger problem for him is fruit and fruit juice. More than a small serving of juice, or a moderate serving of certain fruits (grapes and melon in particular) makes him pretty nutty, so we’ve had to stay aware of that.
Fruit has fructose in it and some fruits have sorbitol which is a sugar alcohol. Sugar alcohols are poorly absorbed and when combined with fructose, the fructose and sorbitol compete for absorption. It’s a double whammy. Whenever you juice something, the sugar amount is sooo much higher. Think about squeezing the fruit and how many it would take to get a glass of juice. They are squeezing all the sugary stuff out and leaving the fiber. A really good diet to also follow for those still having problems is FODMAPs. Kate Scarlata, RD has a wonderful blog on it. It is groups of foods that are easily fermentable in the GI tract and hard to digest.
My daughter is 4 months old. She has a very prominent thick green vein under her right eye. It is becoming more noticeable as she is growing older. She is 100% breastfed. I read your article on holistic Kid website. I am nervous as to how it would affect my baby? Will she have problems in future? Can she become autistic? Right now, she is a very calm baby. Sleeps well at night. Her weight/height gain has been perfect. She is a very social baby. Her doctor said that it is because she is light and thin skinned. To my surprise her pediatrician had many prominent green veins around her eyes.
She has a very tiny blue mark/ vein on the bridge of her nose. It is less than the size of a grain (quinoa) towards her left eye and hardly noticiable. It is not running across, just a tiny spot. What would that mean? Is that a sugar bug? I will definitely make sure that we eat good food. What is a predisposition? Does that mean if care is taken early on, this is curable? Or will she always have to be cautious about what she eats?
Also, can this lead to anything major?
Please let me know your thoughts.
Don’t worry about the green vein under her eye. The Sugar Bug is specifically found on the bridge of the nose, and it is only indicates a predisposition, not a life sentence. Regardless, make sure you eat (and feed her when she’s ready) only good quality, real food. Every child deserves this.
Oh you poor thing! It sounds like you are a great mother and have a wonderful daughter! Don’t let anything on the internet worry you so much!
letrinh hoang, DO says
the blue mark is a vein. it is prominent in babies who have compression. in most babies it resolves over time, very easily if the child has not experienced any form of head injuries during the early years of childhood. this vein is a hallmark and guide that i use for mommies to gauge when they need to come back for osteopathic cranial treatments. how do i know? i treat, the vein disappears, the babies are calmer, happier, sleep better, head shape looks better, the scalp is less splotchy, the soft spot is softer and larger; i tell parents to watch, when the vein reappears, this will coincide with increased fussiness, behavior issues, poor sleep. i treat, and they are better. very easy. read my post, “Doctor, what is that blue mark on my baby’s face?” at http://www.doctorhoang.wordpress.com
This is really interesting! My niece had the blue vein on her nose as a baby and we noticed and commented on it but never really put much effort into researching it. However, my friend’s child has it too and I mentioned to her that my niece had the same vein in the same place as a baby and she looked it up and found this site… It is so crazy to me because we have always thought my niece was going to be a hyper-active child and try so hard to keep her away from too much junk food, but its almost like she CRAVES it. She’s 2 1/2 and she will pull up chairs and climb like a monkey on the counters over to the cabinet where she knows the snacks are hidden. She’s also a screacher!! Funny thing too, is my friends child, who is 7 months old- JUST started screaching as well!! How strange!! Thank you for this post!!! I cant wait to share it!!
My son has the blue vein on the bridge of his nose on the right side. He is also tounge tied. He’s a very calm baby sleeps fine but afterall, he is only 6 weeks old right now… He screeches too. This site has so much reassuring information. I trust chineese medicine and western medicine were very blessed to have all this information. Just thank god he’s alright, his aunt thought it was a bruise!
Kyung Lee says
I use a tiger warmer on kids under 9. So easy and no risk of burning them. I get mine from Lhasa. Love your blog, you’re sharing such important information!
Hi Kyung – I love my tiger warmer too! Thanks for reading. 🙂
I just find this difficult to believe. I think this could be scary for some parents to read and almost like you’re dooming a child to have a problem. It’s like saying “You child has a birth mark on their left leg? They’re quite possibly going to have ADHD and autism.”
My son has a faint line that comes and goes, mostly visible when he is being very active. He rarely gets any sugars, juices, processed foods, and doesn’t eat meat. He is 17 months and is at that toddler stage – the one where kids tend to become frustrated easily and have an occasional tantrum. No amount of attachment parenting/western medicine/tradition medicine/diet systems can prevent that – that is normal toddler behavior. It seems a little frightening and irresponsible to make parents worry themselves sick that their child is going to have problems over a vein!
Hi Tawnie – Thanks for your concern about this post being irresponsible. My intention is not to ‘make parents worry themselves sick’ – As I state in the post:
“If you see blue, don’t panic! This diagnostic sign is much like a curvy road sign. It warns you to drive ahead with caution to prevent an accident. The Sugar Bug also provides us with some convenient street sign warnings â€“ that most parents should follow anyway!” A history of obesity in one’s family does not destine a person to be fat, just as a child with a sugar bug will not automatically develop hyperactivity. But the former may wish to eat responsibly and exercise just as the latter should avoid excessive sugar and activities that will over-stimulate the nervous system.
Not at all! Better than having your head in the sand
Thank you so much for posting this article. My wife and I have been wondering why our child has this vein. I am blessed that we are very selective with his foods and have not cross that bridge with process foods. Thanks again for such a great article. Dion
I love this post! and I love Raven Lang. Took her whole prenatal series. I was going to take her pediatric class in December, but couldn’t make it that weekend d/t various reasons (one being my little sugar bug having major sleep issues). Now that I’ve read your post, I’m even more sorry I couldn’t make that class. I’m so glad you did though! Just think, we almost met in person. Ah well.
After reading this, I am definitely looking forward to checking out the rest of your site and following your blog. Thank you for posting such wonderful information! It’s so nice to find other acupuncturists who share important info for the benefit of all rather than just for the benefit of their own patients. And it’s wonderful to find someone in the “traditional foods” online world who also understands traditional chinese medicine.
Perhaps we will get to meet in person someday in the future. Won’t that be just lovely? 🙂
ps – do you provide GAPS diet consultations for your patients? If so, maybe I need to consult with you. I’m just discovering GAPS now as a nursing mom.
Yeah, not buying this one, sorry. Has to do with your skin type and “see-through” it is. Everyone in my family has this…kids, myself…everyone. Zero sugar problems. Thin, healthy, no hyperactivity….my background is also autism and ADHD…proper nutrition is always a good thing. Ever heard of phrenology? ; )
I have no idea whether I had the blue vein as a child or not (very few photos), but I still have a fairly pronounced blue vein on the bridge of my nose as an adult, and definitely fit the description of a sugar-craving carbivore. I always chalked it up to thin delicate skin, but now I’m wondering if there may be more to it? It’s only the past 3-4 years that I started following a more traditional whole foods diet, and I have seen my cravings for sweets decrease, but could this mean I still have a lot of work to do gut-wise?
Lana – The visible blue vein referred to here typically fades by the time the child is 5 or 6. As an adult, I would not use this as a diagnostic tool, but (as a practitioner of Chinese medicine) would examine your tongue and pulse (as well as a complete history and intake) for signs of digestive weakness.
oh no! I have these problems and my little girl has that blue vein! she is a shrieker, but only when she needs somthing, so we taught her sign language for change and milk and thankful the shrieking has subsided:) We both just found out we are allergic to gluten. I have felt better every day since. I appreciate everyone’s comments. I am being very careful with our diets and hopefully Lily can avoid some of these challenges!!!
My son is.3 he also has the blue vain I never knew wat nd why he was acting out now I understand. These doctors have told me my son has sleep terror disorder add and adhd I now believe in mu heart that is untrue
My son had this when he was a baby, too. I can remember starring at it and wondering what it was, too. Now he is 8, and I notice no difference in him from my children who didn’t have the blue vein. In fact, I think he was my quietest , easiest baby. I recall neighbors in my close neighborhood tell me they forgot I even had a baby, because they never heard him cry. He really didn’t. I breast fed and carried him with me all the time, and he was delightful.
Now, he is still amazing. He is artistic, very intelligent with an aptitude for learning that makes me excited. He is curious and energetic, but I would not say hyper. My personal opinion on the whole use of the word hyper, is that many doctors and parents and the like misuse that word. Sometimes all a child needs is a little discipline, or help setting limits. Guidance. But, all in all, I wouldn’t worry too much about the blue vein thing. My son had it, and was nothing like the description above.
Christina D says
This is very interesting! My 4 month old has a Sugar Bug and he was SUPER colicky from about 6 weeks until right around the 3 month mark. I had read that colic can be caused by a deficiency of certain probiotics in the gut. Our doctor gave us a probiotic supplement to try and low and behold, his colic was gone within a week. The fact that you even mention that the Sugar Bug could have something to do with gut flora really makes me wonder if it’s all connected!
Question though – He is not eating solid food yet, and is exclusively breast fed. Should I be limiting MY sugar consumption at all? I know that eating dairy while breastfeeding can make colic worse, but I never really thought about sugar. I really don’t eat very much sugar (and I never eat processd sugar), usually just a little honey in my yogurt for breakfast and a piece of fruit later in the day. I don’t like things overly sweet.
This is taking things a bit too far. Sugar Bug, really?? The appearance of veins has more to do with how fair a child’s skin is. And your advice for caring for “Sugar Bug Babies” are obvious and basic concepts for raising any child, regardless of how much their veins show. Routines and consistency, low sugar consumption, toys that help a child *do* and think and experiment instead of just pushing buttons for lights and noise – should be pretty much a “duh” type list.
My son had a very prominent blue vein at birth at developed intense colic on day 3. He screemed atleast 6 hours at a time and and didnt sleep through the night until he finished formula at 12 months. He was very hyper and aggressive for many years. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 6 years of age and dylexia. my obgyn put me on sugar busters when i pregnant with him because I was gaining weight faster than normal.
YES YES YES!!! I stumbled on this article fter coming here for something different….and yes. My three year old has always had the blue vein on her nose. We are accustomed to it, but every noce in awhile someone else will notice it for the first time and think that she has bumped herself.
This little oneis also my number one sugar fiend. She had no taste of refined sugar until around 18 months, and then it was like she became an instantaneous addict..and being my first child i was also suprised to seejust how hyper she gets after sugar.
She was never a big crier, but she has been an infamously bad sleeper….still not really sleeping through the night at year old, but at least putting herself back to sleep….what an interesting read!
Genevia Jensen says
DD has a dark blue line on her right eye lid. Could that be a sugar bug? Or is it only when it’s on the bridge of their nose?
Holistic Squid via Facebook says
I doubt it, but I’d have to see it. Why don’t you send me a photo: questions at holisticsquid dot com. 🙂
Early in the comments Heather Brandt says:
(December 6, 2011 at 11:46 am)
“He takes GABA and 5HTP”
I didn’t know what those were so I googled them and according to the article at the link below they shouldn’t be taken together. I have not done any real research but I felt compelled to leave a comment here. I wanted to directly reply to her comment but didn’t see a way do do it.
This is really interesting! My 2nd child who is now 10 had this and we always talked about it but it never occurred to me it could have any significance. He was diagnosed with ADHD a few years ago and is by far the most excitable (good and bad) of my four kids and is definitely the most emotional. He’s also a crazy early riser and was a light sleeper as a baby.
He was born extremely fast, totally labour was less than 2 hours and there was no pushing phase, he just flew out (less than 5 minutes after getting to the hospital!). There could definitely be something to the gut flora issue.
Hi Maranda – It’s so interesting that out of your 4 children the one child with a Sugar Bug has the most excitable energy and was diagnosed with ADHD. At 10 years old, you can probably positively affect his gut flora pretty quickly. Thanks for sharing!
The link between the digestive & nervous system really clicked for me. My middle child (5-yr son) is very much like the description. He is sensitive to sugar, craves carbs, and often used to say his stomach hurt. He has always been thin and I’ve worried a lot about his nutrition, though we are a natural-health oriented family. He has an extremely low pain tolerance and will shriek at a small scratch. He’s very sensitive to loud noises, bright lights, new tastes, etc. Plus he is emotionally volatile and threw magnificent tantrums from age 1-4. Thankfully he sleeps well and is not hyperactive, though he is high-strung. We used to attribute it to being the middle child and wanting attention. The strange thing is, he never had the blue mark. On the other hand, his younger brother (3-yr) has a very noticeable blue vein and is nothing like this, not even a sugar craving. So whether the blue vein is an accurate diagnostic tool seems questionable to me, but no doubt there is a category of children who have this group of traits, or syndrome if you want to call it that. Thanks for the info! It gives me hope that there are more things to try that might help with the hyper-sensitivity.
This is very interesting. My son has a sugar sensitivity, he is 8 years old. We first noticed it when he was 1 on Halloween Night. Since then sugar and red food coloring immediately change his behavior and attitude. He is now old enough to know which foods/drinks he can and can not eat and usually makes good choices. When I read this article a flashback of his newborn face came back to me and I remember a blue line on his nose. I also remember being worried. Thanks for this information.
My almost-4 month old has the blue line on the bridge of her nose. She is only getting breastmilk now. She is a great sleeper, at this point she sleeps through the night with one feeding (and she knocks right back out after it). My son did not have the blue line, and he was a horrible sleeper! I did crave sugar with her pregnancy, though. She seems to be much more vocal in comparison to my son as a baby. She’s very happy overall, but if she’s hungry or tired, watch out, she will let you know! I’ll be interested to see if she has food sensitivities as she grows. I too had a very fast labor and delivery with her – 3 hours total. Interesting article overall.
This caught my attention because my 4 year old has this, and I’ve often wondered why it’s so visible. It has been on the bridge of his nose since birth. He has never been one to cry a lot, and never had sleep issues. He’s a bit of a shrieker though. He has had several health issues since birth, and I’ve been trying to figure out if there is any kind of link to somehow explain everything. He was born with positional clubfeet and torticollis. He has had constipation issues since 6 weeks of age. He has eczema. He is anaphylactic to peanuts and eggs, and allergic to some tree nuts (we don’t know the severity as he’s never consumed them). He was labeled as Failure to Thrive at one point. He has never been above 10 percentile for height or weight, and is usually between 0 and 5 percentile for both. He has apraxia, a neurological disorder that affects speech. He has some sensory issues. He has hypotonia and fine motor delays. He had pneumonia 5 times between the ages of 12 months and 23 months, was diagnosed with immune deficiency during this time, but outgrew it. He has illness induced asthma.
I remember one of my good friends growing up had this line, and I always assumed it was just a birth defect or genetic. Last time I saw her as a teenager she still had it.
My 5 year old daughter has the line as well and does not fit in with the description, other than she loves sugar (most kids do).
She has never been to a doctor or been vaccinated and she seems to have a very healthy digestive system, so I don’t see an issue.
My theory is that the blue vein has more to do with how one was birthed than a digestive disorder, but I could be wrong.
Hi Rebecca – You certainly could be right. I am just relaying the theories of ancient Japanese medicine here, but I’m sure not EVERY baby fits into this description of temperment, and for them, their particular birth (or some other factor) may be the cause of a blue vein on the bridge of the nose.
I’m so glad you pinned this post today! My kids (7 & 9 yrs old) have had that visible vein since they were babies. Doctors have always said it’s nothing. It’s still very visible now on both their noses. Both have very different personalities, but both can be very emotional. They both slept well at night as babies, but only took short naps during the day. Thanks for the info!
Lena Hong says
I am so glad I finally have an explanation! My son was born with a blue vein between his eyes & loves sugar. I even have a name for him – sugar bug! He loves to load up on starches & sweets – rice, corn chips, apple sauce, toast. I always make him eat some protein & good quality fat with the starch. I will implement the suggestions listed above. Thank you!
Huh. My second son has this, quite distinctly, but he’s been my easy baby – laid back, good sleeper, pretty calm. He has his moments, but he’s two. My older son fits the description nicely but no mark, and he’s always had yeast issues too. If I had to make a guess, I’d say the vein is something that can appear with the syndrome but not necessarily.
Interesting, I’ve never heard this before. My son had a blue vein like you have described (so obvious, that people often assumed it was a bruise), but was an easy, easy, easy child. He is 2 years old now, and is compliant, observant, and obedient (with OF COURSE an occasional I-can’t-handle-anything-right-now tantrum/melt down), and WONDERFUL with his little sister, who is only 15 months younger. I never would have thought to describe him as hyperactive, and he was sleeping through the night by 4 months. He never had any refined sugar until his first birthday, though, so I guess we can file this anecdote under “inconclusive, but needing further study.” 🙂
melissa ross says
Dose te vai
Ha! This must be a typo, but it’s almost cussing in Portuguese.
melissa ross says
Dose the vain have to be across the nose or can it be down and kinda purpleish?
I find this interesting I myself have a blue vein down my nose and is clearly seen all the time even with makeup now I have a beautiful baby girl who is 6 months n she as well has a blue vein on her nose not as noticeable as mine hers seems to change but is always there I have never had any problems with my sugar until I became pregnant with my baby Taylin and I got gestational diabetes but now I am fine once again she is a great baby hardly ever fusses. I have never heard of this before until my best friend sent me this link I’m amazed and don’t feel so alone now!!!
My 8-year-old still has the vein, and we’ve been struggling with sleeping and mood issues since birth.
My in-laws thought the vein was from letting her cry too hard when she was a baby.
That is not a cool thing for in-laws to say! Babies cry hard, even when you are trying to comfort them!
My daughter has the vein and she is nothing like the article describes… As a baby she always slept very well and at 18 months still does. She is also very laid back and eats things like honey and pb sandwiches and fruit daily as well as pasta, rice…sweet potatoes are her favorite. We keep her schedule pretty consistent, but if it’s not clockwork she doesn’t have a cow about it, and she handles stimulation extremely well.
Where is the science here? This is something completely made up….. Why would the structure of the veins and fairness of skin have anything to do with being sensitive to sugar? Someone please explain this to me in scientific terms.
Of course it is smart to limit sugar….duh. But this has nothing to do with kids that have more prominent veins between the eyes. Some people are so latched onto alternative or non-western medicine that they won’t question the validity of anything – just except these stories like a religion.
Hi Jennifer – As a daughter to a family physician and oncology nurse, I truly understand your need for a scientific explanation. When I began school for Chinese medicine, I was always the student with my hand in the air, saying “That just isn’t POSSIBLE!” Until I realized there are many different ways of looking at the same thing.
This information comes from handed down wisdom of ancient Japanese medicine. Is there a scientific explanation? Probably. But I have no idea what it is.
I will say that most things that hold true in alternative medicine tend to have some underlying scientific explanation if you dig deep enough. Sure the Sugar Bug theory won’t apply to everyone, but not everyone who smokes a pack of cigarettes a day will get cancer either.
Finally, while many modern folks cling onto science as truth, in many ways it is no less a religion than Christianity or Buddhism. Like religion, science is just a human way of explaining the unknown.
Wishing you the best…
This is old chinese medicine(thousands of years), much more healthy and true than bought and paid for corrupt “science” that you speak of. DOn’t be fooled by companies that are in business to get your money.
My daughter just turned 1 on the first, since she was born she has had a very defined blue vein across the bridge of her nose, she showed allergies early on as due to my lupus I lost all supply to bf at 4 months. She was almost to calm lol as a newborn slept through he night slept all day if she wanted, and was like that until 4 months it seemed. She shrieks, omg does she shriek, does not like sleeping at all, and throws some mighty tempertantrums. She’s also only 17 lbs at a yr old. She started crawling at 5 months, and walking by 9 so she’s hitting mile stones greatly. Glad someone posted about this bc she fits every mark and it will help me out with elimination that much more than I already do thank you
I’m just not buying this-show me some type of evidence.I respect accupuncture and traditional medicine but every system gets it wrong sometime.This just sounds absurd.and I chalk it up to coincidence.Whenms the last time you saw a baby that DIDN’T have a blue vein between their eyes?While the theory of weak/visible veins(ie:varicose veins) being connected to sugar and other imbalances may have some plausibility behind it,you have to keep in mind newborns have thin skin and it’s going to show more.
My older daughter, middle child, is the only one of my three with this and was notably my most mellow child. She was and still is a great sleeper, was always a smiley and fair tempered baby, and now that she’s in school she has no issues with attention or hyperactivity, quite the contrary. She’s very bright, she is in many enrichment/extracurricular activities and can go-go-go without getting upset at all-better than any adult I know!
Could there be any other cause, because this does not describe my gal at all?
My oldest had this, which I always thought was rather pretty. Like your child, Sarah, mine did not exhibit any of these symptoms (though he is tongue tied) – and he does have a mean sweet tooth as an adult. Actually, the bio for the blue vein describes my next son, perfectly. Perhaps it was buried deep? (Tongue in cheek, I’m not really buying all this one.)
My son and nephew(both extremely fair boys) both had the blue vein. And they both were awesome sleepers and happy good natured babies. And at 10 and 7 are still . They get treats and sugar but within reason of course.
‘Stay tuned for a future post on how to bequeath healthy gut flora to your future children!’….
I was wondering if you posted info on this? Would love a link! Thanks!
Hi Jennifer – Here’s a post to get you started: http://holisticsquid.com/make-your-own-kombucha-kefir-cultured-veggies/
My son is almost 7 and still has a dark blue vein there.
He is MAJORLY addicted to sugar. I cant make cookies or he will sneak and eat them all. I cant treat him to a doughnut or he will want 3 or 4 and be mad as heck if he doesnt get that many.
He had INTENSE colic as a baby, to the point my husband and I are still dealing with the turmoil that put us all through.
Pasta, potatoes and bread products also cant enter the house or thats all he will eat. I am just figuring out that these foods turn into sugar in the body, so it makes total sense why he loves them so much.
VERY, VERY interesting article!!!
Em Walker says
I’m really trying to copy down a recipe from one page but, when I saw the title of this post on the sidebar, you totally grabbed my attention. My oldest son has had that blue vein since birth. He had two surgeries IN his nose though around that area so I sort of chalked it up to that but, I have always stared at it wondering what it was.
Your description, down to THE last detail is spot on. And yes, one of his diagnosis was ADHD! I’m definitely going to recheck his diet to see what sugar is left in it and what happens after he gets it! Truly awesome article! Thanks!
I know you said babies with a visible vein TEND to be the way you described, but I still feel the need to share my personal experience.
My daughter is going to turn 3 in a few months and was born with a pretty dark vein (compared to the child pictured, my daughter’s was much more visible than his.)
She is so opposite from what you described. She’s been vegan since birth, and eats much healthier than I EVER did at her age. She loves whole grains, every fruit and vegetable she’s ever tried, and she doesn’t react even slightly different as a result of eating sugar. She eats a healthy diet, so we don’t feel bad about letting her have treats (vegan cookies, vegan ice cream, etc.)
In some cultures, if you have a baby with a visible vein, it means your next baby will be the opposite gender. I have never heard of the sugar bug before, and in our daughter’s case, it doesn’t seem to apply to her. She’s an excellent sleeper, has an even temperament, is very easy to get along with, very social and smart, etc.
The tips you suggested seem like great advice for parents of every child, not just ones with a visible blue vein.
Just thought I should chime in with “an exception to the rule” story.
My Youngest has this Blue Vein. I do as well and I am an adult!!!. I need to check my other two… but he IS a mellow child. He sleeps well, but is a moving sleeper!!! Will have to look up more about this!!! Glad I found this post!!
What if the blue area is off to the side of the bridge of the nose? Does it have to be in the middle? I was very aware and careful of gut health during my pregnancy and have always wondered why the little blue area showed up after he was born…
My granddaughter was born with the blue line and as a preschooler has several of the symptoms you mention. I’m curious as to whether the blue line ever goes away? I’m thinking like after appropriate dietary changes and perhaps probiotic supplementation. If so, this could be a good way to gauge “treatment” effectiveness.
I’m not sure I could ever get her parents to change to a healthy diet unfortunately. It’s so hard as a grandparent. We know what needs to be done but are not in a position to make the changes. Family is the hardest people group to help! Oh well, I keep loving and praying for them.
Hi gma – the sugar bug is just a diagnostic warning, and is not likely to change based on lifestyle. Kids usually outgrown it by 3 or 4 – though their tendencies will probably remain.
Sarah Mueller says
My 2 children 4 year old boy and 7 month old girl have this. The description fits my son to the T he is very hyper active has major digestive issues and although he has NEVER had soda or candy or other such sweets he CRAVES anything that equals sugar such as juice, bread, starches and wants to eat only these foods DISPITE my efforts to avoid these foods. He has had skin rashes since birth. We figured out he is allergic to milk (although the allergist said he was not when we tested him). He was having pale colored stools (indicative of liver troubles) and passing a lot of undigested food. We took milk out and his stools greatly improved but we still have a long ways to go. I myself have suffered from constipation since childhood, and have crazy bouts of gas. I also have very pronounced and visible vains all over my body. When I was pregnant with my daughter I developed an extreme intollerance to ANY sugars. I COULD NOT eat breads, corn, potatos, fruit and even lettuce tasted sweet to me. Thanks to this I am no longer addicted to sweets. My daughter is mellower than my son and sleeps better too. I have always been very health consious and overall healthy but have also had some health issues dispite everything that I cannot figure out. My sons health has been a HUGE puzzle I have been trying to figure out for the last 2 years with no help from the doctors. Thank you for adding another piece to the puzzle. I feel like I’m getting closer to having it put together
Hi Sarah, thanks for your comment and glad to have helped even a little. Good luck with everything and hope to hear positive feedback from you!
Sarah, Check into the FODMAP’s diet. These are groups of foods that are highly fermentable in the digestive tract. When we eat foods that we can’t properly digest, they get fermented in the intestines which leads to bloating, gas, stomach pains, some get constipation and some get diarrhea from it. Reflux and regurgitation are not uncommon either. Then all this food that is not properly digested and fermenting in our intestines, throws off our bacterial flora. This gut dysbosis leads to food sensitivities and skin issues like eczema and it effects sleep and their is the brain connection for some. Kate Scarlata, RD has a great blog on this. The diet has had clinical trial performed on it with great feedback. One of the big groups of foods that causes problems is excess fructose. Other areas are lactose, polyols (sugar alcohols), fructans – which are wheat, onions, garlic, and beans. People may not be sensitive to all these various groups, but there is an elimination diet to help you sort it out. Everyone has a different threshold on how many fodmaps they can handle per meal or day based on their individual sensitivities. That’s why many times when supper hits, the bloating and pain gets worse. .
My daughter has the blue vein on the bridge of her nose too and we have wondered what it was. Thank you so much for giving us an explanation. She is sensitive to sugar and even at age 2 does not sleep through the night. The most she sleeps at once is 6 hours.
Thank you too for the real food debate. Now all of those times I have banned junk and sugary foods in our house is all the more reason to keep them out.
Thank you too for your wonderful posts and blog. They are very helpful in getting my family to eat real food.
My 2 kids born with that!!! None of my doctor give a damn!!!! That’s so good to know!!!
HI!! My best friend’s two year old son has the blue line and hasn’t slept through the night, has awful meltdowns and doesn’t like to listen. I had her read this and she said O.M.G this is my child!!! The only problem is he’s a VERY picky eater and he mainly eats Potatoes, pasta, rice, juice and fruit!! He wont eat anything else. What can she do to get him to eat better foods to see if it will help his behavior? She’s asked her doctor for help but they just say he’s two they are picky at this age.
Nichole – while toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, extreme pickiness is often a sign of gut flora imbalance – which is directly relevant to the ‘sugar bug’ presentation. Here’s a good post to get you started: http://foodforkidshealth.com/how-to-get-fussy-eaters-to-eat-nutrient-dense-food/
Thank you! I will forward this to her! I really hope this helps. None of the drs seem to think he’s got a problem but as a mother she knows somethings not right.
I came across this site after searching online about blue vein on bridge of nose. The reason as to why I was searching this was because both of my kids (son, 5 and daughter 9 months) both have this and a aboriginal man commented on these markings on children as having aboriginal bloodline, which in fact they do on my maternal side. I find all of these comments very interesting to any the least. Although both kids have this marking they are completelydifferent. My son was a horrible sleeper, but a pretty calm kid and very routne oriented he had to get tubes at 2 yrs old we limit candy and cakes and treats, as like in any kid, sends him on a sugar rush and does alter his behaviour. But he is very attentive and a great student. no digestive problems (he had bowl movements like clock work) my daughter has slept through the night since 4weeks olds a good 13 hr. 2 nAPS a day and does not cry.very even keeled. A great eater and again regular bowl movements and no digestive issues. most kids I know behave better with structure and balance and a good diet. In our household with follow these key things.
My daughter has a blue vein! I can definitely see her matching this profile for a ‘sugar bug’ even though she’s still very young.
For the first 5 weeks of her life she screamed, and I mean SCREAMED for 4 or 5 hours non-stop, completely un-consolable, no matter what I did, at least once a day, usually all night. I was beginning to think it was colic and would never end. She is breastfed and I tried cutting out million different things. We were super broke and weren’t eating very well because of it and as we started to eat better she calmed down. We now eat almost all organic, zero corn syrups, waaay less bad sugars, no fast food and use no chemicals in our cleaning/bathing. We also put her on a bedtime routine. I’m willing to bet that it was our lifestyle changes that helped her out as she is now the calmest baby, rarely cries and sleeps well at night. She’s only 3 months old now, but I believe it was cutting out processed/bad food and excessive sugars, establishing a routine and being more calm. And now I know to keep an eye on it in as she gets older.
Shannon Klein says
Courtney what an inspiring story! I am so encouraged to hear this! I hope to have a baby soon and with all the problems my mom had with me I worry my babies will be the same but stories like this help me see how I can DO something about it!
The blue-vein sign seems a little bit silly without using rational methods. But most of this stuff seems like good common sense for most babies.
Especially limiting sweets. Children should be so lucky to have their tastebuds trained away from sugar from the beginning.
Sheila Loren says
I was wondering what that bluish green tint was around her eyes and nose! I thought one morning that maybe I’d accidentally elbowed my two month old in the nose! I’ve also noticed a green hue underneath her nose/above lip and see that there is a green vein running across that makes her skin look discolored. Any acupuncturists know what this could be?
I had to have a C-section and also have a compromised gut with auto- immune issues. Carefully watched my diet during preg. as for gluten, corn, all grains and dairy. Didn’t take as much probiotics as I should have. Did eat cultured veggies though.
I’ve read that I should supplement my baby with a bifdum bacteria since I had a C- section. She is now four months old.
Hi Sheila, thanks for your comment. In Chinese medicine, the green around the mouth may indicate a birth trauma. I’d take her to a cranial osteopath for a few treatments to get her system back on track.
Sheila Loren says
Thanks so much Emily. Both veins are very prominent. which worries me as a first time mom.
I had a clarivoyant, funny enough refer me to cranial sacral therapist a couple of months ago because of the C-section. I will def. make that appt and get this done for her!
All my girls s have this and still do at ages 6&1/2 , 3, and 1&1/2. They do seem to fit the mold here, especially my first child. Will be interesting to see if their brother has it in a few months.
My 7 month old son has the blue vein look like a bruise at the top of hos nose, I noticed it when he was 3 months old and always wondered what they are. Now I know why my son cries more, a very bad sleeper and cries to a high-pitch voice. At first I thought he was just a colicky baby so I gave him some hemeopathic colic tablets and it actually helped a little bit. My concern is, his dad was diagnosed ADHD when he was a kid and took medication for 10 years. Now I’m afraid that my son being a Sugar Bug baby will have more of a chance to be ADD/ADHD when he grows up. I just started giving him solid food and I only give him pureed fruits and vegetables, and I still breastfeed him. Should I lower my intake of sugar too since I am breastfeeding him? What do you advise us to do to help our baby? I am very much interested to try the acupuncture for my son, I myself love acupuncture. Thank you in advance.
Hi Jasmin, thanks for your question. I’d work on healing his gut using probiotic supplements and probiotic foods. Avoid sugar, sugary fruit (bananas), and refined grains. Feed him bone broth to help heal the gut.
Shannon Klein says
Hi Jasmin, I follow many bloggers/websites including this one and a lot of the other moms have similar problems and they all talk about removing dairy from their diet when they’re breast feeding. (I have no experience yet!) Have you tried that? If so, did it make a difference? I am interested in your situation as mine sounds similar! (DH & his whole family are ADD/ADHD!)
I thinks that as far as this goes it is crap. My daughter has that and she has no such signs of any disorder. On the contrary my son who doesn’t have that is more sensitive. Proper diet will keep your kids well no matter what birthmark or vein they have. In other words, you want to feed them good ALWAYS and no matter what.
Yep – my son exactly….well, except the shrieking thank goodness. =) Always wondered what it was. everything I ever looked up in Chinese medicine kept saying stroke which freaked me out. Glad to hear something else that made more sense. Thanks.
They probably are linked Julie.
Strokes are caused by blockages which build up hardening the arteries. The plaque that is there comes comes from cholesterol attaching to inflammation on the artery wall.
Inflammation is caused by spikes in your sugar levels.
If you have a kid that is sensitive to sugar, he’s probably also experiencing more inflammation when he has it, therefore slightly increasing risks of stroke as an adult.
Not saying all kids with a sugar bug will have a stroke, but makes sense that they are more susceptible than most…
I have identical twin girls and only one of them have the blue line. They were both exposed to the exact same gut flora. Any ideas? 🙂
Guggie Daly says
Wow! I feel so validated right now, lol! When discussing potential health concerns in toddlers, I often warn mamas about a tell tale symptom: prominent, bluish veins. Also look for pale skin. Slow growing, sparse or thin hair. Thin, flaking, ridged fingernails. Thin, small teeth, often with ridges at the top. Delayed or very painful teething. All of these point to poor gut health and severe mineral deficiencies/imbalances!
Julie Redl says
While I don’t scoff at the older more traditional medicinal practices by any means, I find it curious that this is a “thing”, which by its definition excludes all infants with dark skin.
Shannon Klein says
Oh my goodness, every day I learn some new little thing like this. I had such a glaring, large, BLUE vein across the bridge of my nose when I was a kid. Once my Grampy tried to lick a corner of his hanky and rub it off so much that my nose started bleeding (it didn’t hurt, it just bled!). And my mom will tell you I sure was a shrieker! I think I fit in an odd little place between these generations of GAPS moms and GAPS kids cropping up all over nowadays. I have very distinctive memories of emotions and meltdowns that I went through, irrational fears, depression ever since I was a baby and I have spend the last 9 months following GAPS and focusing on diet and I am happy to report that I have LIVED the path toward recovery!
This is fascinating! All three of my older children have this blue vein. It is most prominent in my four-year-old son, who is my hypersensitive shrieker. Any unexpected changes to his routine and he goes off his rocker. Some days he can’t stand to have anyone touch him (especially days when he has had sugar or a lot of starchy foods). He also has a severe speech delay. Doctors have offered no answers. We have him in speech therapy and only now are some people outside the family able to understand him… sometimes. My two older daughters also have this vein, like I said, but it’s not as noticeable and they haven’t been as difficult as my son (though they were still difficult in some ways).
Last year we discovered GAPS and went on it for a few months. It was too hard for me to go completely grain and starch free with such young children, though (and on a limited budget), so we are now doing more of a Nourishing Traditions style diet, with a strong emphasis on lacto-fermented foods (we try to eat some with every meal). I got pregnant with my fourth child just after finishing our few months of GAPS, and ate as many probiotic-rich foods as I could throughout the pregnancy. Interestingly, my fourth baby, born just last month, is the first one who does NOT have this blue vein! Hopefully that bodes well…
“Sugar Bug babies may cry more, have more issues with sleep, and – my personal favorite – shriek”
This is the complete opposite of my daughter. Out of my three, she cries the least, sleeps the most since week 2 and never shrieks. My doctor and after some research, told me the vein will eventually disappear when she gets older. And her face fills out more.
This just makes SO much sense! I happened to see this while reading up on HVBO and FCLO. I was like, wait a minute, my daughter had that blue vein, she was diagnosed with ADHD, never been a great sleeper, and I *know* she has gut flora issues that need to be remedied. I nursed her for 22 months, but it was very often. She nursed almost constantly the entire time. Seriously. She had colic, gas, spit-up, reflux, projectile vomiting, etc, etc, etc. I also think there’s a definite link between digestive deficiency and the tongue tie and lip ties. I knew she wasn’t tongue tied, but I just NOW see that she has a lip tie and she’s 6 1/2!! And there was a noticeable difference in my pregnancy with her vs my younger daughter as well. I craved a LOT of sugar with my 6 1/2 yr old and no sugar at all with my younger. I also tested positive for Group B Strep with my oldest and had to have IV antibiotics during labor with her. I was induced with her, and she FLEW out as well. I did push to make it happen, but she came out all in one push. She has sensitivities to touch (seems in clothing are the devil), we’ve eliminated gluten from her diet and thankfully, through much research, we’ve been able to treat her ADHD symptoms (most of them) with the Feingold diet, which eliminates artificial dyes, flavors, preservatives and high salicylate foods. It’s gotta be due to the gut flora. My youngest doesn’t react to the artificial stuff like my oldest does, but we still feed her natural foods b/c they’re better anyway, but still. Thank you so much for writing this! I know it’s 2 years later, but it’s finally nice to really put all the pieces together. I’m going to pursue acupuncture or at least look into getting a Tiger Warmer. Western Medicine has been NO help in any of this (because I’ve tried and tried and tried), so I’m going to go with Traditional Medicine from now on!
Such an interesting post! My 21month old daughter has this blue vein. I have also been diagnosed with stagnant digestion and liver chi stagnation by an accupuncturist. I have been on a gluten free, processed sugar free diet for years and have recently begun eating traditionally (especially lots of bone broth for gut healing). Anyway, the symptoms my daughter has exhibited were, as a newborn, I had to be careful that she didn’t get too much of the sweet foremilk while breastfeeding or she would be coliky and she always been very active (although I have known hyperactive childern and it has never occurred to me to label her as such). She has never slept through the night because she wakes up to nurse (wondering now if its her constitution). I’m guessing she may not exhibit as many symptoms because I have always fed her the diet perscribed in this post. I also guess I should find out about milk sensitivities since we eat a lot of kefir and yogurt.
My question is, can this syndrome be healed through diet alone or is accupuncture needed? How will I know if healing has occurred?
I appreciate anyone who can give some guidance.
WOW! My son was born with this! It goes right across the bridge of his nose! He is a year old and has never had any sugar, other than naturally occurring in fruits, but he has had some very small amounts of honey/maple syrup. He is also gluten and grain free. He also is preservative and dye free. I am wondering if you have any leads or links so that I can start doing some more research on this?? Thanks so much!!
Thank you for writing this. My son also has this blue vein. He is nine months and loves the shriek and is not the best sleeper at night. He is also lip tied. I was really bad about sugar while pregnant and still go through my bad stages while nursing. I should really keep a journal to see how my sugar consumption affects his sleeping and shrieking. He hasn’t had any sugar yet, but I know his grandparents will sneak it to him all the time when he’s older. I can use this to help them keep the sugar away.
My son is about to turn 1 and I’m so confused by all these comments. He has a green vein but he is mellow, good eater (loves to eat), great sleeper and napper. He is always smiley and good spirits (unless he’s hungry). I make all his baby food and he’s nursed. We eat real food at home. When I was pg with both kids my diet suffered due to HG. Had it all 9 months. But he’s been such a great baby. Nothing obviously wrong yet. What should I be looking for?
Sheri B says
We don’t actually “inherit gut flora” at the time of birth. There is absolutely no intestinal flora or bacteria present. This is why babies are given vitamin K (the vitamin is produced by healthy gut flora). They get intestinal bacteria only once they have delivered and begin to nurse (or anything is put into their mouth).
It’s a good idea to nurture healthy biotics in people of all ages. This means eating things that contain and support the healthy gut. It also means NOT throwing antibiotics into the system unless the benefit truly outweighs the damage done.
Courtney L. says
Um, actually, babies DO inherit gut flora at the time of birth. The vagina is absolutely teeming with microbes, and they will be the same as in the mother’s gut: balanced (healthy) or unbalanced (pathogenic). The horrific onslaught of antibiotics (which you correctly mention) and flora-altering food and drugs such as the Pill, along with the overuse of C-sections (no flora to pass through), have partially caused the severity of gut damage in today’s babies.
Hiya! I can’t tell if my son has the blue vein that your speaking off becasue he is VERY fair, like translucent skin, he’s also a redhead and the blue veins are pretty much everywhere. (forehead, neck, between the eyes, etc.)
He is a total carb freak, loves: rice and pasta galore (aka sugar). I, as a nutritionist hate this. Do you have any tips to get nutrients into picky little ones?!
So much easier to help other peoples’ kids! 🙂
Thanks so much!
Ottawa ON Canada
Hi Stephanie, thanks for your question. I have a great post on feeding picky toddlers here: http://holisticsquid.com/picky-toddler/ but this really is a challenge especially for a child that only wants carbs. Good luck!
My son has a blue vein across his eyelid that has troubled me since birth. He has recently begun suffering from severe behavioral and sensory issues that fit this perfectly. I try to be whole foods, gluten free, and have even done GAPS with my other children (autism and seizure related). I’m wondering if the vein on the bridge of the nose is the same indicator as the one on his eye…
Dr. John Foley says
Great article. When I see this in hundreds of children using bio-energetic and bio-resonance testing, the priority is always the liver, kidney,colon or adrenals. Stress or mild dysfunction anywhere along this chain will cause back pressure in the circulatory system (akin to a kink in garden hose) causing venous congestion above the neck, most noticeable at bridge of nose. This back pressure also contributes to immune/nervous system dysfunction and leaky gut/leaky brain syndromes. Very specific/targeted gentle cleansing of food/environmental toxins from digestive and elimination systems will restore whole body health and take pressure off of circulatory system, resolving issue. Thanks for creating this post 🙂
We’ve searched all posts for anything related to nut allergies, and Melinda’s is the first. Our, now 4 yr old, grand-daughter has had a very prominent blue vein at the bridge of her nose since birth. Her Dr. wasn’t concerned, nor labeled it, but said it is simply something that makes her extra special, which she is. She also fits the majority of the sugar-bug indicators (rather strong-willed, (most tantrums due to mention of bedtime) early riser, frequent constipation and stomach-ache issues, sugar cravings, etc.). She was a very quiet and calm baby, and slept through the night at 1 month, but began waking and having nightly sleep issues at about age 2, at which time she also refused naps. She is very intelligent and artistic and extremely talkative since about 18 months. She has eczema, often complains about being tired, and also fairly sensitive to noises. Above all, she is a great staller at bedtime! She complained often about headaches in the past, but no longer mentions them. Our daughter had an emergency C-section, and baby was not with Mom for many hours after birth, and Mom was unable to breast-feed. (Unsure about Tongue-tied? Might a hosp automatically correct this?) SHE WAS GIVEN ANTIBIOTICS FOR PNEUMONIA AT 8 MONTHS AND NOW ON A DAILY INHALER FOR ASTHMA. This 4-yr old has many minor allergies (cats, trees, grass…), but the most severe is nuts, for which she carries an EPI pen. Two days each week we watch her and her sibling (2), and find all the postings and recommendations great (Acupuncture, GAPS diet, etc.). Although good and caring parents, Mom and Dad are not apt to follow. Their nutrition regime does not mimic those posted, of which we might agree tend to border the extreme. FYI: A recent and promising lab study (with mice) has connected nut allergy to gut imbalance (?) due to early use of antibiotics. The research findings and solutions sound promising toward making strides in allergy-related issues. In the mean-time, we grandparents want to be sure life is as good as it can possibly be. We, of course, agree that sugar is bad, but do feel childhood cravings are typical, as are most behavioral issues. But, when all are factored together, it does appear a syndrome of sorts. Thanks for all the wonderful sharing.
my 4yr old son and my 20 month old daughter both had the blue vein and tongue tied both love sweets,my son gets hyperactive and my daughter has hurrendous tantrums!!
My son is textbook “sugar bug”
How to I get B vitamins, amino acids and zinc into his diet.
Hi Cynthia, thank you for your request. Your best bet is real food. Here’s a post that outlines what you should be looking at: http://holisticsquid.com/nutrient-dense-diet/
My son had that blue vein at birth. He was hard to get to sleep, everything caught his attention… Not an easy child!! At 20 months he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. I know there is no way to prevent that type of diabetes, but your article makes sense to me!
My daughter has had the blue vein since birth she is 1 1/2 I still breastfeed her and she eats completely organic with little wheat. She sleeps great but has many tantrums and screams like any normal child. When she was a newborn she wasn’t so good at sleeping and I slept with her at every nap until she was use to it. I’ve always worried about the blue vein she has other birthmarks such as a darker patch on her thigh, two birth marks on her neck that look like little vampire bites and a small blood red patch under her neck, is there any connection between them?
Hi Taylor, thanks for asking. These other birthmarks are unrelated and completely normal from the sounds of it.
My son was born with the blue vein, I thought it was because he is so fair you can see it so much. I was wondering does this apply to all sugar bugs? I read your article and everyone’s comments but Alejandro hasn’t shown signs of that. Like most of the moms here, I too only give him organic meals, fruits and vegetables. He sleeps 11 hours at night and takes a three-hour nap during the day….he is 2 1/2.
Can you actually back this up? You don’t even have to correct Japanese words. I can’t find this anyway else. It’s made up.
Do you have any references regarding this condition? Also, is kanmushi a diagnosis given based on the child’s symptoms or prescribed due to the blue vein? It seems that “kanmushi” is based on the child’s behavior, and that sometimes children diagnosed with kanmushi have the blue vein, but that a blue vein between the eyes doesn’t necessarily indicate kanmushi. Is this correct?
Oh crap I am 20 and I always had a blue vein between my eyes and right under one of my eye. I still have it now, even though it got better after I changed my diet two years ago. I didn’t know there was a correlation with the veins on my face and my health! This is really good to know!
I hope it’s not too late to reverse the damages to my health by following your guide, even though I am already 20 years late. My facial structure changed a bit after I changed by diet at the age of 18, I mean proportion wise it became symmetrical. Your children are so lucky to have an attentive mother who catches subtle cues (like the sugar bug) early in their lives!
holy cow that was a lot to look at!
My question is: the pink/purple stork bite some are calling it? It is something I, my niece/nephew, sons, all have – can’t find a pic of my brother to find out about him. Is this something similar?
Thanks for sharing all this!
So, my DD was born with a really visible, heavy, Blue, nose-bridge vein but did not have tongue or lip tie. (We thought this was due to her positioning, being backwards and breech). She was, however, severely constipated as a child and lactose intolerant (which has improved with age – she’s now 11).
Any other info you have on the blue vein would be helpful to read about, as, it’s still faintly visible (She now wears glasses and I made a point the other day to look and see if it was still there).
Thanks for your response.
Hi KnitYeah, thanks for your comment. My advice would be to really focus on gut health. 🙂
Interesting read. My youngest son has this blue vein too and he has Hirschsprungs Disease a bowel disorder meaning his bowel is lacking nerves and so doesn’t function correctly. He was born unable to poo. He is a very sensitive boy, when he tantrums he smashes his head on the floor repeatedly, my eldest did this too, though not as much. His Hirschsprungs disease is linked to delayed speech though so his temper could be down to his frustration about being unable to communicate what he wants. Lots of “if’s, but’s and maybe’s”. I will have to look into his diet though and see if altering what he eats improves his behaviour.
Rebecca, a good diet to start with would be a FODMAP’s diet. It reduces sugars that are high in fructose and other sugars and carbs that are harder to digest. Sugar will definitely affect children’s mood, ability to sleep at night, and overall mood sensitivity. I’ve seen all of this with my dd. My dd also had problems with delayed speech. She also has upper lip tie, high palate, had sacral dimple at birth and there’s still some question of maybe a Hirschsprungs but I’ve read enough about that surgery, and don’t think it’s something we want to even pursue if she came back positive on further rectal suction biopsy because most kids still need constipation meds after the sugary. My dd only needs a small amount of constipation meds to keep going. After altering diet to more of a fodmap diet, dd’s sleep and mood got better. Still need to keep her bowels moving with meds so bacteria doesn’t overgrow which can bring on all kinds of mental issues also, but we are seeing positive results removing the tougher to break down sugars and carbs and sugar alcohols.
Really interesting post! Both my daughters have the blue vein, although mauch less visible now that they are older 8 & 4 years old. They started talking very early, about 8 months old and they were pretty eloquent, not the slightest problem. Lousy sleepers and the eldest is chocolate addicted and really short-tempered.She also needs extra help in focusing on something, though I wouldn’t call it ADD. Or should I? I must say, her addiction was encouraged by both her grandmothers, as they considered her “too thin”!The other was pasta and tomatoes…The little one is quiet and more manageable although she can have violent bursts from time to time. She adores pasta, fish and meat.How do I change there diet smoothly? And what are the consequences of bad diet as they grow older?
Hi just came upon your website. My 16 month old DD has been diagnosed with multiple food allergies (its runs in the hbs family). My older DS has none (Thank heavens!)
She was exclusively breast fed and around 3 months, she started gettign eczema and aroudn 6 month when we introduced dairy..projectile vomit…we tested her last month Skin and blood.
she showed very high Ige levels for several foods, she is still breast fed.
I am at my wits ends, pretty much the only foods she can eat is meats and broth and rice and some veggies and bananas. 🙁 Anyways she does have this striking blue vein on her forehead that is almost shaped as a V and she is a terrible sleeper.
Any advise would be appreciated.
Hi Ariana – Have you tried the GAPS diet for healing food allergies? I’d recommend reading this book for more information before starting the diet.
Interesting! My son has the blue vein on the right side of his nose in between his eyes and he was tongue tied at birth. He however is NOT fussy at all and has never been constipated! People have told me they can’t believe how well he behaves and some of our closest friends have said they’ve never even heard him cry! He is 9 months old now and has slept through the night since 3 months old. I don’t know if I believe there is a link between the blue vein and behavior issues.
This is very interesting!
My now 8 year old had this when he was born and it did not go away until he was 5.
He was also tongue tied and a very sensitive baby!
At the age of 6 he was diagnosed with AS and the MTHFR mutation.
He is currently on the GAPS diet so hopefully it will help clear up the emotional melt downs
My daughter has this and she received antibiotics during labor and at birth. She is 6mo old now and I am wondering how can help her repopulate her gut? She is breastfed and I eat lots of probiotic rich food and very little refined sugar. She
Sorry little baby fingers fot in the way. She and my son are both screechers and I purposefully limit all sugar because I notice significant behavior changes when they are allowed to consume to much! Would you recommend giving my kids probiotics in addition to lacto fermented food?
Hi Kristi – Thanks for your comment. It sounds like you’re doing all the right things, but I might add an infant probiotic such as this one: http://holisticsquid.com/KlaireInfant
The blue vein that appears on the bridge of the nose on babies is caused by the COCKTAIL of vaccines that the babies receive early in life.
I, too, am wondering about the connection with tongue-tie. My 4 month old was tongue-tied and has the blue vein.
The youngest of my 3 kids has what looks like a bruise, except it has been there since birth and he’s 7 months old now, a little higher up on his nose and a little to his left, it’s more than just one vein, it’s a spot about the size of a large-ish pea. He has no tongue tie issue’s, is a pretty good sleeper, but he shrieks a lot, mostly just for fun, to talk lol, and when he’s mad as well, but it’s funny you mention that 🙂 We have always just said “Yep, he’s our screamer!” Not that he cries any more than any other baby, he just has these ear piercing screeches sometimes lol. Anyway, I too did “all the right things” when I was pregnant, and pre-conception, organic, WAPF diet, havent taken any prescription drugs or OTC meds since I was a teenager, etc. He is just as healthy as my other baby’s were, and seems to be even calmer than they were, but I’ve always wondered about his blueish spot. He’s never been to the doctor except for a quick newborn checkup when he was a few days old at my midwife’s request (as she asks all her patients to do) so I havent asked any “professional” about it. We live in a very rural area and there are no naturopaths or anything within hundreds of miles.
Hi – Did this blue spot go away or fade? My four month old son has exactly what you mention here. I am concerned it will not go away. Thanks.
Hi Rachel – The visible blue vein referred to here typically fades by the time the child is 5 or 6. As an adult, I would not use this as a diagnostic tool, but (as a practitioner of Chinese medicine) would examine your tongue and pulse (as well as a complete history and intake) for signs of digestive weakness.
Hello, it’s been almost a year since i posted that and no it has not faded. Around the time my son turned 1, he also started to develop holes in his teeth, which he’d only had for a few months!! I am still struggling with this, and have not taken him in due to financial limitations as well as my own fear. We eat a very healthy diet, he never had sugar, juice, refined flour, didnt have much grain at all actually, yet he still has severe tooth decay and I am heartbroken. It cant be coincedance. I have 2 older children with perfectly normal teeth. The only thing that I did “wrong” with him is I did not space my pregancies as far apart as I should have. I’ve been giving him therapeutic doses of FCLO and FCLO/BO blend, fermented veggies, grass fed meat, eggs and cheese, etc, but so far I am not sure it is helping at all. Anyway. He did not have the tongue or lip tie as some have mentioned above, but here is some interesting info on this issue I recently came across http://www.healthhomeandhappiness.com/folate-vs-folic-acid-mthfr-and-why-i-regret-taking-my-prenatal-vitamin.html
Amber King says
That explains a lot, my son has the “sugar bug” as all and your post helped me to under stand why he acts the way he does when we take him on outing’s that are crowded, busy, b-day parties etc. He always acts out or is really quite. Thank you for sharing, it’s helped me understand a lot more about him that I really didn’t understand
My son had this, too, when he was a little guy. Each time the blue vein became very noticeable, he had a nose bleed within 24 hours. Whenever I saw the vein become more noticeable, that was always my signal to be ready for the nosebleed as they were always doozies. Upon investigating the cause of it, I supplemented his diet with extra zinc and the blue vein and nosebleeds stopped.
Really cool post! One of my 3 children had this and she had the most difficult transition to life outside the womb. She is still more sensitive to stimuli than a lot of people at age 9 even though her personality is lighthearted and carefree. She had her blue vein for at least 2 1/2 yrs which synchs up with her most stressful years. About that time, we stopped watching tv, just once a week on Sunday afternoons now. We play outside a lot. I only took her off gluten last month (our family is transitioning). I can relate to many if the points mentioned, not all but many. Fascinating.
And great blog.
Just thought I’d add my experiences for interest sake…I noticed the very same bright blue line on my daughter at birth. She is 6 and still has it. She never slept or ate well as an infant, suffered terrible reflux and even bled in her stools (with no discernible cause). From around 8 months she started getting a skin reaction/exzema which rapidly spread to literally her entire body and face. My precious Angel was a miserable raw little thing 🙁 Its cause was untraceable as her diet when she started solids excluded wheats, sugars etc (we always had this ‘if God didn’t make we ain’t going to eat’ approach…) and there was nothing in our environment that could be pinpointed (every product that touched her or her clothes was completely natural). Anywy, my homeopath sent us for stool tests and it was discovered that her little tummy had extremely low levels of good bacteria and her body was unable to maintain the correct levels. For the next 2 years we cycled through 3 or 4 courses of treatment with pure ecoli manufactured in the clinic we tested at. Literally within days her skin started healing. Now, at 6 years old, I am so grateful to say she is doing really well. She permanently takes her oils in and echinacea to boost her immune system and she watches her own sugar intake like a hawk! She knows if she has too much she will still get a little rash somewhere. Thank heavens, because of our own healthy eating policy. sweets etc do not hold a strong pull for her. Another couple of interesting points of intersection with other’s stories above: she is a VERY high energy little darling! And when she was born we were told she might need to have her frenulum cut (can’t remember now if it was lip or tongue….)as it looked a little tight – thankfully that never happened and she speaks beautifully. Anyway, interesting read. Never knew about this and it explains so much of what we have experienced over the last six years. Thanks for sharing 🙂
Hi, my son seems to be going through the same thing. he has the blue line and is 8 months and has started to get really bad exzema that doesn’t seem to go away. What steps should I take to have him checked for what was going on with your daughter?
I have to say, while I agree with limiting kids sugar intake, I’m fairly certain that this article is misleading.
My husband is a Sacro Occipital Chiropractor, and I’m reasonably certain that these veins indicate strain within the plates of the skull. It’s something that’s fixable, especially if you catch it early. My second child had blue veins and my husband treated it. They vanished rapidly – only a couple of adjustments are usually necessary.
Additionally, all of the symptoms you list like behavioural issues are symptoms of strain within the skull and nervous system. Again, these behavioural issues are treatable with gentle Sacro occipital chiropractic care, which treats the nervous system & organs.
I must add though, I openly support and use Chinese medicine for my own family.
My 12 years old daughter have this green line above the eyes since birth .At first I thought that it would fade But it got even more worse and grew darker when she grow. May I know that what is that green mark?
Hi Wendy – Thanks for your comment. I can’t say for sure, but I would guess that it might be a vein or birthmark.
It is interesting to read how many sugar bug babies have other identities midline defects – is this blue line another possible symptom of MTHFR genetic mutation? It could also help explain the associated gut concerns, diet restrictions and behavioral issues mentioned.
Wow! I don’t know what to think! My 7,5 month old gorgeous daughter has this visible vein and me and my husband have always discussed why it was there/visible. She is a bad sleeper and she does shriek (this is a new thing) – in terms of digestion I find it hard to tell at this stage as she is exclusively bf and while we’ve started solids we’re taking it very slow.
So here are my questions if you don’t mind:
Is there anything to be done in terms of sleep with these babies in particular?
Regarding food, when we get that properly going, you mentioned this like rice and pasta also. Are we talking just the white kind or also whole grain rice and pasta? If so what’s left to give them a balanced diet besides quinoa? And should I take this into account already now while bf, ie limit my sugar ? I’ve tried and am continuing to try because it’s better for me and for her I know, however, as it goes hand t hand with bad sleep, it’s VERY hard!
Lastly, anything else that’s recommended doing that can help with their gut in terms of holistic approaches I might try already now?
Thank you in advance
Hi Susanne – Thank you for your questions. Since each baby is so different, it’s hard to say without knowing more. If you would like, you can schedule a free 15 minute consultation with me so I can give you a more detailed response. http://www.emilybartlettacupuncture.com/distance-consultations.
Ali Raza says
Today I have read your article on the Sugar Bug child, My son also has a blue vein that appears on the bridge of the nose, he is about 3 years. Apparently, he dont have any problem of tongue tie, however, he could not suck bottle nipple happily since his birth and he use to have sever constipation every now and then. He is very much underweight i.e about 9 Kgs and structure is short. He has very poor appetite but he sleeps normally. Till todate I could not know what is the reason of his poor growth.
Is this due to sugar bug ? what should I do for my son, please
So, I’ve read this article about 3 times over the course of the last 9+ months. I have b/g TWINS born via c-section last December. My little man had this slight blue vein appear on one side of the bridge of his nose when he was about 2 months old. He was not born with it, or, it was not visible, anyway.
They each had their own ‘swimming pool’ and ‘snack bar’ so my specialist said to think of them as completely separate siblings I happen to be having at the same time. 🙂
While he is not a shrieker, he does fuss more than his sissy, often fights sleep (unless he’s being nursed, lol) and typically has hard or firm stools. I am still nursing them, but do need to supplement. From 1 month to 8 months, it was with Baby’s Only Organic. But I felt so guilty (soy, iron fortified) that I finally got my feet under me enough to make their formula (WAP formula). I’ve read that article of yours a few times, too. [btw, this is totally a side note, but it has been heavy on my heart. I follow several of you fabulous bloggers who all rave ‘breast is best’. 100% agreed. But every time one of those articles would show up I felt like I was sent on yet another guilt trip. Because of the circumstances of their birth, we were really hindered. My ‘golden hour’ was shot, both were lip & tongue tied (TY to Mommypotamus, I was able to recognize it immediately), I had a c-section and did not get to even touch them for 2 hours… For 3 months nursing was excruciating. There were days when I would sob every time I nursed. The babies were small and grew VERY slowly. So slowly, they were not even ON the growth charts – any of them! It took 4 weeks for them to get back to birth weight. The decision to start formula also was agonizing. But in spite of all I had done, read, eaten, drank and been helped with by crunchy friends, I was just not producing enough for them. I KNOW all the benefits of nursing and I tried SO HARD to nurse them exclusively, but they were hungry. It came down to the decision to let them be hungry or try to find the best option for supplementing. It took me several months to get my head above water, but when I did, I switched to the WAP formula.
I guess I said all that to say, the guilt that a formula supplementing mommy probably feels is intense and often, on-going. Please for the sake of our breaking hearts, go easy on us. It is most definitely NOT out of laziness or convenience that we do it. Too often, there are feelings of failure that re-surface with every scoop of the powder. . . ]
Sorry I got long-winded, like I said, it has been heavy on my heart.
Anyway, about my little man’s blue vein. I will follow the advice regarding foods etc in your article, but what about the sleep issues? Some days, he looks tired all day in spite of naps. Do they need more sleep? Is it the quality or quantity of sleep that helps?
Thanks so much for your informative and relevant topics! Crunch on!! 😀
Taken with my Twins,
Hi Shanna, my name is Tracey and I am just someone who reads Emily’s blog, so I have no advice to give you on your sons blue vein issues. However, I am also a mom of b/g twins (they are 3 1/2), and I also struggled with nursing both of them and had to supplement. I just want to tell you from someone who has been through it, take all that guilt about supplementing and throw it out the window!! That first year is sooo hard. You are feeding your babies, and you are doing the best you can, and that’s all that matters. xxx
Thanks Tracey! I appreciate it coming from someone who KNOWS. lol Aren’t twins just the best!?! I’m diligently praying for another set. Gonna try to do a few things differently this time too. 🙂
My 7-month-old has had the blue vein across the bridge of his nose since birth. No sugar addictions, no problems sleeping, and no other issues that I can tell so far. Just thought I would be the “voice of balance” in this discussion.
This is accurate according to my family! Thank you for sharing this information. I did not realize there was a connection to the blue vein. My twin sister was born with one and it helped people tell us apart ( I even look for it in older pictures when I am unsure of who is who!). My first daughter was born with the same blue vein. She is highly sensitive to sugar, and was our shrieking baby!!! I read a great book when she was very young about good fats, and limiting sugar. I also had to work at the time and she was on antibiotics, had a yeast infection, and then developed exzema on her hand first, then her body. The book I read was called : Super Immunity for Kids by Dr. Leo Galland. I started giving her flax oil, probiotics, and rubbing Evening Primrose Oil on her belly every day. Thankfully this opened my eyes to her needs and we started trying to find out more healthy recipes. Today she is 15 and loves SUGAR!! I try to limit it at home as much as possible, but she is also a very picky eater. Any tips for a Teen who needs more oils but hates all fish ( except tuna)?
My son has blue veins not just between his eyes but also on his forehead and all over his scalp, and he doesn’t fit this description at all. He’s always slept very deeply, in fact, too much at first, it worried thenurses, he still sleeps through the night, and people have always commented on how calm he is. He has started crying more often as he gets older, but I found out it just means hes bored and wan s to watch TV. He’s almost 3 months old now. However, I DO have ADHD and a hard time getting to sleep, and a sensitivity to sugar… It could be that these genes just have a loose correlation that Japanese medicine picked up on, but does not necessarily mean they will occur together or cause ADHD.
Though, there is a boy that has neurological defects with bright blue veins on his forehead that cause him to have seizures I read about in an article.
However, I should add that I don’t eat sugar.
Very interesting ! As a baby I had a very blue vein in the center of my forehead between by eyes, in the shape of a V . It can still be seen sometimes now if I am particularly tired or sick. Does this qualify as a Sugar Bug? Or is it only on the bridge of the nose ? My son (7mo) also has a very faint V vein in the same spot. But neither of our temperaments match the description of fussy / crying as babies.
Thank you !
Thanks for your question. This only pertains to a blue vein between the eyes, over the bridge of the nose as far as I know. I think yours would probably just be a prominent vein.
My husband and I immediately noticed the vein on my now 5 year old the day of her birth and figured it was just because she had such fair skin. She was an extremely difficult baby and toddler (no sleeping, shrieking, reflux, etc …) and still is difficult to this day! The last year or so we have limited sugar and t.v. and are changing her diet drastically because she becomes a whole different out of control child after eating sugary or processed foods. We have suspected anxiety/ A.D.H.D but are deeply against medication or labeling children so young. She’s an amazing beautiful little person who just needs to monitor things a little more closely than others. I’ve never linked the vein to her behaviors but this article describes her to a T and her vein is still huge! My other daughter does not have a visable vein and is the calmest, easist child I’ve ever encountered! So my experiences make me feel there is definitly some truth behind this theory! Great Post!
My son now 7yrs old. Had that blue line. At 5 weeks old he had an operation to fix his pyloric stenosis ( blockage of the stomach due to mussels being so tight). He also had a huge groin hernia at 10 months old. He was a shoking sleeper. Terrible tantrums at 1 1/2 – 2 head butting walls, etc. Had speach therapy at 3. Was hugely hyperactive but not naughty. Now theres no blue line, he’s settled down and is way more calmer and sleeps well…although he is dyslexic he has such good manners , gives everything a try , such a positive attitude to school a real charismatic lovely bubbly child his teacher loves, not one bad complaint about behaviour or effort…..but this theory is very interesting
My 7 year old son was born with a blue vain on the bridge of his nose. I always wondered what it could be. He was a great baby, started sleeping through the night at 8weeks old. Have never had an issue with sleeping. He is a very sensitive boy though. He also gets very upset over little things. My 2 youngest children Thomas 4 and Sophie 10months, do not have the blue vein. Interesting read! Thank you ????
My 3.5 year old has a blue vein – although I think it is fainter now than it was when she was a baby… she was by far my easiest baby – she was also 5 weeks premature – but she ate and slept and that was it. Around 2, she did have terrible tantrums. She is not obese, but noticeably chubbier than her 2 older (biological) sisters, who are and always have been bean poles. Around 2, she started throwing up all the time and would only cling to me. We took her to doctors and specialists and no one could pin it. I was scared to feed her anything. We watched her diet and wrote down a very detailed food log, down to a breakdown of herbs, salts used, etc. We finally took her to a naturopath and she did some allergy testing, and took a look at our food logs and determined that she had a digestive sensitivity to citrus and potatoes of all things! (our family doc told us to take her off milk and wheat – which actually made her worse!) It has been over a year and we have been working with the naturopath to reintroduce the foods to her now that her gut has healed from all the vomiting episodes last year. We have introduced a lot of fermented foods, and homemade broth which has really been of benefit to our entire family. We are just at the beginning, but it’s interesting to see all the stories of the ‘blue vein’ … and note some of the connections –
Melissa Griffiths says
I’m so glad I found this site. I have a 6-month old who has just developed this blue vein. He was born with a severe lip and tongue tie which we had treated and I was also on antibiotics at the time of his birth for a UTI, so that’s 2 strikes! He is a terrible sleeper, very fussy, suffers from constipation and has just started to shriek, which I thought was him finding his voice. He is exclusively breastfed but will be starting solids in a few months. I have to admit that my diet wasn’t great when I was pregnant but I have since been diagnosed with a thyroid issue so have been trying to treat it by being on a GAPS diet. He takes baby probiotics but what else can I do now to help provide him with the best possible start? Thanks in advance!
Emily Bartlett says
Hi Melissa, thanks for your comment. I suggest you read this post about first foods and continue with the probiotics. Good luck!
Jen zweifel says
I just wanted to say my son has this and he has severe gerd. Also has a milk protein allergy. Along with other allergies. He is also really fussy and doesn’t sleep too well. My daughter who never had it, is completely fine. But I only had preterm labor with her. With him I had preterm. I also had a rash called prurigo of pregnancy, gestational hypertension and just a rough time. So since all his issues were brought up I thought I would share.
Wow. …very very interesting reading. I have an 18week old baby boy. He is my 4th baby (all boys) but he is completely different to my other 3.
He has always been very unsettled. Struggled with digestives issues as a newborn. ..up to 2+weeks between dirty nappies, silent reflux symptoms etc. I tried a wheat, dairy and gluten free diet which made no difference. We saw a cranial osteopath regularly from 2 weks old but had a no improvements. At 6 weeks he was found to have a bad tongue tie affecting feeding which was eventually divided successfully and this improved this greatly however…He is NEVER settled…doesn’t sleep well AT ALL!!! He needs constant stimulation. ..like constant. .I can’t leave him down. He shrieks really loudly all the time, again I thought this was him finding his voice. He has a prominent vein on the bridge of his nose as well as his forehead and under his eyes. He has been a slow Weight gainer … my other boys all piled weight on and all were/are breastfed. I funny enough have had a very sweet tooth since pregnancy. ..can I assume a sugar free diet for myself might help?
My son (nearly one year old), was born via c section after a failed induction due to gestational diabetes.
He has two blue veins across the bridge of his nose which I’ve wondered about a lot. I wasn’t as careful as I should have been during pregnancy with my diet due to 28 weeks of all day nausea- the only foods that seemed to help were junky and sugar laden.
He has been a terrible sleeper from the get go and is not good with eating healthy foods. He was finally diagnosed and had an upper lip tie and posterior tongue tie revised at ten months. He has started eating a little better but is definitely attracted to sweet foods and ignores it spits out healthy foods that he doesn’t like. Sleep is still terrible and he’s definitely a squealer/shrieker.
I’m not really sure how to pull out all the foods with sugars in them, or those that concert too quickly without him stopping eating. His weight had dropped from the 15th percentile at birth to the 3rd percentile before his revision.
I was completely addicted to sugar at a younger age, and prone to tantrums into teenage hood. My baby has already started gaving tantrums!
Really not sure where to go to from here.
My daughter was born with the blue vein across her nose too. I was hesitant to give a young one sugar, but noticed an adverse reaction when she had her first bite of a donut at 2. It completely changed her behavior. Even now at 5, she is strongly limited in her sugar intake. My mild, sweet child becomes physically violent and verbally aggressive when she has the smallest amount of sugar.
My younger daughter does not have the blue vein and tolerates sugar just fine. I always sensed a connection.
I’m so glad to have found this article and all the comments. My eldest son is 6 and has the blue vein, and fits with the picture above. He had lots of food intolerances as a baby which we got treated with NAET. My youngest is 3 and doesn’t, but did have upper lip tie and posteria tongue tie which we had revised. He also needed NAET for food intolerances. Both boys had bowel/wind issues which were due to the food intolerances. I did a lot of reading at the time of the lip and tongue tie diagnosis into the MTFHR gene, which I think I may have too (looks like at some point I may have had an upper-lip tie) so I’m really now thinking this is all inter-related. (I remember reading about the link with ADHD and ASD too). My eldest has bad eczema, well that’s what the doctors call it, although I’m not so sure. It came on quite suddenly and manifests as lots of itchy spots, mostly on his shins, but also thighs and elbows.
Does anyone else have a link between the blue vein and eczema? Has the GAPS diet and/or cutting out sugar helped?
My little man was born with the blue vein on the bridge of his nose. Until he was three months he only woke up once in the middle of the night. From then on, he slept all night. He was the easiest baby in the world. Today he is five and doesn’t have behavioral issues. He doesn’t like too many sweets and has a killer personality. Guess I got lucky
Both of my children with a blue vein over the bridge of their noses are my best sleepers, my most mellow, and my most even tempered. I think it’s just a bunch of nonsense to freak parents out.
Hmm…my daughter has the blue vein and has been sleeping at least 10 hours a night since she was 3 months, no tongue or bowel issues. She is almost 7 months now, goes to sleep on her own and sleeps 11 hours. She is a very good baby, easy to soothe. She maybe has a short attention span, but I attribute that to her being a baby. No issues really and I haven’t done anything special. She gets breastmilk and puréed vegetables so nothing out of the ordinary.
I appreciate that there is an “official” name for this blue vein, but I have to call shenanigans on this theory. My current baby happens to be my best sleeper, least fussy and the one whose digestive system was the best (until he had to get on antibiotics for an infection). My oldest was a terrible sleeper, had tons of digestive issues, allergies, skin problems, throws tantrums, and had no “sugar bug” vein. Everything you listed above is what you should do for any child, sugar sensitivities or not. We have tried the dietary route for my oldest with no difference. The true difference is when we limit TV and sugar and give him clear guidelines and especially show him love, respect and patience. I will of course attempt to limit sugar in my youngest and follow all of the rest of your wonderful advice. Hopefully by this responsible parenting my youngest will turn out well. Only time will tell.
Totally agree with you Jeannie…my daughter was born with a massive blue vein just on her eyebrow, with three vertical veins feeding down to it. Everyday people asked me if she had a black eye!
To suggest this is ’caused’ by anything except the way the veins biologically constructed themselves in those first 12 weeks is a bit silly.
My daughter displays all of those ‘symptoms’, was ebf with me off dairy, and is exceptionally sensitive to food dyes and sugar. Having said that, I don’t think she’s special, in my long experience as a professional nanny this is the case with any child. Some parents don’t see it until they look, iykwim.
Everybody feels better without sugar and dairy, and also gluten. We are just not evolved to successfully process the excessive amounts that are common in the average North American diet.
“Sweet Poison” by David Gillespie is the original detailed eye opener, but any quick Google search will reveal many links to more information about the effects of sugar.
Your message is positive and helpful though!
With the first sentences of blue vein I recognized my daughter. Literally got goosebumps! From a young age my daughter has problems with digestion – colic to adulthood, stomach gases, reflux, difficulty bidding, hard feeding. And now, although she is almost 3 years old, restful sleep is a mirage – screams at night, nightmares. For the past three years I’ve had a few nights sleep tight … in the nights in which her grandparents took her as a guest. It did not interfere – these sleep disorders do not affect and se do not seems sleepy. Unlike her mother.
Regarding the food, I agree that this is clearly a bug that causes parents to be vigilant. Dairy foods are its scourge. When she was 2 years after severe gastrointestinal illness brought his secondary lactose intolerance that can be said of today’s date contained. I accidentally turned my attention that the stool consistency of my daughter changed from a particular food. This forced me to avoid milk, dairy foods, beans, lentils, peas. With the regime also I have very much to watch, the bathroom is not immediately before bedtime because it affects the emotional state; without wacky games and screams before bedtime. The ritual is clear and precise every day – as the day ends with a tale to bed slightly dim light. Only then can we move on to sleepy. Which also created drama to some time ago. She grows up … hope with growing up, the problems subside. But the article gives a clear sign that there are others like us. Insane 🙂
I’ll be back to read out each post. Maybe I’ll find something that will help me overcome these difficult days.
Well this is just holistic nonsense . It’s a hereditary marking like any other and due to pigmentation / thickness of skin / prominence of veins …. How do I know ? Because I had this as a child ( baby photos it is really obvious ) and I was an easy baby and my eldest also had it and out of the three I have was the calmest and easiest child . Just one more thing to make parents worry about nothing .
This is silly. My son has this and he is the most calm child ever. His digestion is fine and he only cries when hungry. He has slept through the night since he was two months old and never shrieks. He is my most relaxed and easy going child. What is exactly the scientific evidence for this hypotheses?
Ladies I have another article https://newburydoula.co.uk/2014/07/29/sugarbug-could-a-blue-vein-between-a-babys-eyes-be-a-sign-of-tongue-tie/. There is about cranial compression and link to tongue tie. Tong tie can lead to speech difficulty and or delay. This my concern her rather then sugar sensitivity.
the link to tongue tie. My daughter was never checked for tongue tie even though we had lots of problems with breastfeeding first three months but she was gaining weight very well it was always me mastitis. Anyway, this is my thought..
also, my daughter is sensitive to diary and she is very long term breastfeed child
this is amazing. my son has the blue vein since birth. he was a great sleeper. we breastfeed till about 2 and I keep his away from sugar at list till he was 18months. his bigger sister ask for sweets and some time he have some as well mostly biscuits. I try now 2 keep them both away from sweets anyway. I only find out about this last tuesday when I see a homeopat and he told me about the vein being sugar bag. he also say that chineze medicine consider this babies vaccination risk so he congratulated me for decided not to vaccinate my kids even I didn’t have any idea about this sugar vein. he is crazy to play with my phone but I don’t let then unless is better for them to keep them busy. he never been constipated more then 3days and some times he go 5-8 times a day. very smelly 🙂 he is now 2years and 3months and he loves meat. when I feet him for example any food that have meat in he tell me and poitou to the meat. the only thing that worries me is that he have an eczema on his legs that started with few spots some good months back and now is a lot more. they come and go using the cream from the health center. I try 2 keep them as health as I can always using for them creams, shampoos, body wash and treatment always as natural as I can find and only treat them at home with homeopathic remedies. I can’t afford only organic food but I try 2 get without G.M.O and also without any E. thank u very much for this article. is really helpful. good luck to u all and healty children’s 🙂
Hey, my son is 2 and 3/4 and I just discovered that his blue vein even had a name. He is a huge chocoholic (which I try to limit) but he is sensitive to Red 40 food dye. He gets super hyper and bounces off the walls when exposed. Otherwise, he is super stubborn and even though he is a blonde very much resembles the red heads from both sides of our family (super stubborn and a huge class clown type attitude). I am most curious if there is a link between his sugar bug and his Red 40 sensitivity.
This is interesting but you should never limit fruit. Especially in children. Do you have resources that explain fruit affecting bodies the same way sugar does?
Interestingly, I have 7 children, and one has a sugar bug. She was my healthiest pregnancy (I ate very well during it, homegrown, organic and the like). She is the most snuggly, calm, patient child I have and she slept through the night from 1 week old. She doesn’t seem to match up with the description, but I still find this very interesting.
Lily Anderson says
My daughter is 9 months old, had tongue and lip ties (revised) and the blue vein as well as gut issues right out the gate.
A midwife friend of mine suggested I take extra Folate pre-conception, like 1000 bc she said prenatal vitamins didn’t have enough. I wonder if taking too much folate could have caused the tight meridian issues. Thoughts?
Also, my daughter has recently started flapping her arms. The flapping seems like an attempt to communicate something, but she does it often. Sometime this worries me but then again, I am a mother so I worry….
She had the vitamin K shot a birth, Dtap tax twice (4 months and 6 months), and Hib & Prevnar vaccine at 6 months. Are Sugar Bug babies more susceptible to vaccine reaction than other children? I’m holding off on more shots until I do more research. Would love to know what you think about this.
She never breastfed well and I was an under producer. That’s a whole other story but she had about 50% breastmilk until 6 months, then about 25% breastmilk until 8 months. Now, she’s on 100% Hipp Stage 2 (Dutch version) formula which she seems to do well with and was on Holle goat milk formula until about 5 months.
I purchased just baby DHA and a baby multivitamin (includes B, D, zinc and much more) and gave her her first dose yesterday. To help with the constipation and gut issues, I’ve recently started giving her 1 tsp flax oil and baby probiotics. Is all of this helpful, overkill or worse, harmful to my child’s health and development?
Any suggestions would be helpful. Thank you.
My baby was born with this blue vein across the bridge of her nose, however, none of these characteristics describe her personality. She is a mellow, happy, baby. She has always been a great sleeper as well. I also do not notice any digestive issues. Is it possible for a baby to have this blue vein without symptoms? Or is there something else I need to be on the lookout for?
Whitney Rice says
My son was born with the blue vein and I never thought anything about it. He slept through the night from 6 weeks old, ate great, veggies included. Still prefers salad if we go out. Fast forward 10 years and he was diagnosed as Type 1 diabetic. That’s what caught my eye about this article. Wonder if there’s any correlation? Whitney.email@example.com
Kari McKnight says
Apparently it’s a sign of MTHFR mutation too.
Carolina Sabo says
My daughter has the sugar bug, it’s because of a tongue tie, which is a middle line defect… caused by MTHFR mutation! Crazy domino effect!
Now we now to limit enriched flours and grains because they contain synthetic vitamins/minerals.
We have suitched to organic food (flour and grains too because they are free of folic acid). Folic Acid overbuilds in our system and can cause many ailments, which include but not limited to- sticky blood, thrombosis, hypertension, blood clots, ADD, ADHD, etc.
Hope this helps someone!!!
My daughter (3rd child) has a sugar bug vein at the top and a sacral dimple with a small amount of hair at her bottom, and she has been my happiest, sweetest, most loving, most helpful, friendliest, and most outgoing child. She is also super-energetic. I’m predicting stunt woman or roller derby queen (she’ll apologize to everyone after she bumps them) as her future career.
All 3 of my kids have sacral simples. My first has Aspergers, and my second has ADHD and serious anxiety (he’s the shrieker in our family!).
Devin R says
I’m quite worried about this, really. 🙁 my almost 5 month old little boy has an extremely bold blue line across the bridge of his nose. I am exclusively breastfeeding him. I do eat way too much sugary sweets and starchy foods! I’m certain of it!
At this point I’m worried because he does spit up so much. I still have heartburn following my pregnancy and that’s never happened with my children before!
He loves lovin’s and he wants to be held all of the time! He does shriek a lot!! Even when we sick him to sleep, he chatters and squeaks the whole time. I’m genuinely worried about this now… I don’t want him to add or adhd… 😮 omg..