I write this first blog post a little hesitant, but moreover hopeful that my knowledge in growing up with severe food allergies can help anyone out there with food allergies of their own, or a loved one with food allergies.
I was born with a severe peanut allergy, into a family that had no idea what a food allergy even was. When I was a toddler, my mother gave me peanut butter on toast and freaked out when I broke out into hives. My poor parents, through some scary situations, discovered that peanuts sent me into anaphylactic shock. For those that do not know, anaphylactic shock is a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction. Hives. Vomiting. Throat swelling. Blocked airways. Slowing heartbeat. It’s scary stuff. My anxiety is proof that living with a severe food allergy can be quite frightening. However, I am grateful for my protective parents that taught me how to manage my food allergies, and my husband who is willing to call restaurant after restaurant trying to find a safe place for me to eat.
Along with my severe allergy to peanuts, I recently discovered that I am allergic to shellfish. Also because my allergy to peanuts is so severe, my allergists insist that I stay away from nuts altogether. And to top it off, when I was a senior in high school, I became severely lactose intolerant. No nuts. No shellfish. No dairy.
It’s limiting, and frustrating at times, but after living with this for twenty-four years, I feel that I am able to thrive with my allergies.
As I continue writing, I hope to share some of my favorite recipes that I have adapted to work with my food allergies, recommendations for allergy-safe places to eat, some personal stories, and anything else that I can share that could help others to thrive with their food allergies!