need advice re: food allergies

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my munchkin had a relatively serious reaction to peacans, so her pediatrician referred us to see an allergist. after the allergy test, it has been confirmed that she has a pretty severe allergy to tree nuts. since then ive been researching food allergies and lurking around food allergy support groups and to be honest, its scared the buhjeezus out of me. folks are writing letters to all their kid's classmates telling them what not to pack in their lunches, i see things about chef's notes, ingredient cards to find other terms for ingredients which may include tree nuts, and alot of approaches seem a bit overboard to me.

dont get me wrong, i carry around her epi pens and some benadryl (shes also allergic to cats), so i'll always be prepared "just in case", but im wondering how much of the extra stuff is necessary. i just keep picturing the tummuy tub thread and i dont want to be duped into buying anything thats completely unnecessary, but at the same time, i dont want to put my child's life in danger.

id love to hear what the opinions and advice of those who have managed to survive living past the age of 5
no advice. but good luck! that must be scary
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While food allergies are very serious, I feel many parents go overboard with asking other students in the classroom not to eat them.

My sister is very allergic to all nuts and she has managed to survive the past 25 years with them around her. She is also allergic to pretty much anything outdoors, bananas, tomatoes, and some animals.

My best advice is to educate your daughter on her allergies and just be prepared. Let her teachers know and anyone who takes care of her.
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i once met this girl who said she was deathly (maybe not deathly, tho) allergic to nuts. we had order Chick- Fil-A and she like panicked and stormed out. apparently, Chik-Fil-A cooks their chicken in peanut oil. her cousin ran around and made sure everyone had washed their hands after eating because the cousin could not come in contact with it. i thought that was pretty extreme. but i guess until you know how she reacts when coming into contact with peanuts, maybe its better to be precautious?
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Well they can be very serious, as I'm sure you guys know. So what's considered an overboard reaction may depend on the specific case.

I knew a woman who became allergic to iodine in adulthood after giving birth. So she couldn't eat any seafood. And I think she was so alleric that she couldn't be in the same room as any seafood, the smell was enough to cause a reaction. She was that allergic.
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Well they can be very serious, as I'm sure you guys know. So what's considered an overboard reaction may depend on the specific case.

I knew a woman who became allergic to iodine in adulthood after giving birth. So she couldn't eat any seafood. And I think she was so alleric that she couldn't be in the same room as any seafood, the smell was enough to cause a reaction. She was that allergic.
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I wonder if it was the smell, or rather some other component that gets in the air.
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my nephew is allergic to nuts (and a billion other things)

1) he is starting to grow out of these allergies. Hopefully this happens with your daughter

2) his level of sensitivity also seems inconsistent. His mom ate a sundae with nuts and an hour later she kissed him on his eye and he had an allergic reaction. But then again my uncle fed his some of those peanut butter and cheese cracker and nothing happened.

3) I have a pantry will a couple different kinds of nuts. I keep them all on the top shelf. He plays with the stuff on the bottom with no problem

4) I have a co-worker who is allergic. He accidentally ate nuts on day (waldorf chicken salad). He took some Benadryl and was fine. He doesn't even carry it with him. luckily, someone else had some

until you know how serious the allergy is, don't panic. Hopefully it's mild or she grows out of it.
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i've read and have seen reports on tv that say that many people with peanut allergies can safely consume processed peanut oil ... and probably are if they eat fast food.

to my knowledge, schools here don't restrict what foods parents can pack for their kids. so assuming that peanut butter crackers and pb&j are still staples in many kids' lunches, the ones who are allergic may possibly be slowly building immunity to peanuts with the trace amounts they are exposed to.

i wonder how many adults still think they are deathly allergic to peanuts when they actually no longer pose a threat to their health?
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my nephew is allergic to nuts (and a billion other things)

1) he is starting to grow out of these allergies. Hopefully this happens with your daughter

2) his level of sensitivity also seems inconsistent. His mom ate a sundae with nuts and an hour later she kissed him on his eye and he had an allergic reaction. But then again my uncle fed his some of those peanut butter and cheese cracker and nothing happened.

3) I have a pantry will a couple different kinds of nuts. I keep them all on the top shelf. He plays with the stuff on the bottom with no problem

4) I have a co-worker who is allergic. He accidentally ate nuts on day (waldorf chicken salad). He took some Benadryl and was fine. He doesn't even carry it with him. luckily, someone else had some

until you know how serious the allergy is, don't panic. Hopefully it's mild or she grows out of it.
Originally Posted by scrills
This pretty much describes my daughter. She ate a cashew when she was 2 (surprised the hell out of us, because she never eats ANYTHING) and broke out in a rash. Turned out she was allergic to cashews and brazil nuts, but they warned us away from all tree nuts. We kept an epipen and Benadryl on hand, but since she's a picky eater it was never an issue. The most she ever had was an itchy throat, easily treatable with a Benadryl. She has since outgrown the allergy, but we still treat them with caution.

My son has a friend with a peanut allergy. He will break out in a rash if someone who ate peanut butter even touches him. They have an epipen in the office at school, and when he's out of school, he wears it in a fanny pack that is constantly with him. His mom has to be vigilant, but he is fine.

Good luck, I hope it is nothing serious!
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i've read and have seen reports on tv that say that many people with peanut allergies can safely consume processed peanut oil ... and probably are if they eat fast food.

to my knowledge, schools here don't restrict what foods parents can pack for their kids. so assuming that peanut butter crackers and pb&j are still staples in many kids' lunches, the ones who are allergic may possibly be slowly building immunity to peanuts with the trace amounts they are exposed to.

i wonder how many adults still think they are deathly allergic to peanuts when they actually no longer pose a threat to their health?
Originally Posted by rainshower
The reason the oil might be ok is because it the proteins/ amino acids in foods that cause reactions and oils are often striped of proteins. Peanuts have a lot of different proteins, and its almost impossible to pinpoint the exact one or ones that are causing the allergy. This is why immunotherapy is not done for peanuts or any allergy. Also, it tends to not work.

I woundn't eat peanut oil though, and due to the increase of peanut allergies and the litigious society we live, I highly doubt any major fast food chains are using peanut oil anymore. Though it doesn't hurt to ask.

I'm allergic to peanuts and the allergy only started in the last 3 years. I've been tested to confirm this, and I have mild allergies to many other tree nuts, to many fruits in raw form.

I understand that I'm an adult and more able to avoid food I cannot eat. I guess the only solution for a child would be to make a rule that they can only eat what you allow them them to eat, and as they get older teach them to read labels so that they will be able to make safe food choices as they get older. Again with allergies on the rise, many food will list common allergens seperately and in plain language and will tell you if the foods were made somewhere where they could have come in contact with allergens. Also make sure to periodically teach them about Benedryl dosing and how to use to the epipen.
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The reason the oil might be ok is because it the proteins/ amino acids in foods that cause reactions and oils are often striped of proteins.
Originally Posted by riotkitty
this is the reason that was stated and why it was recommended that people with these allergies not consume cold-pressed peanut oil that has most of its properties intact.
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. folks are writing letters to all their kid's classmates telling them what not to pack in their lunches,
Originally Posted by subbrock
I've always suspected that this isn't so much about kids with allergies not being able to be near peanuts or what have you, but more about the fact that you can't really rely on kids to not share food or trust that kids can evaluate what they're eating to know whether they're allergic to it. I think because it's hard to control whether little Bobby is going to give his peanut butter sandwich to little Jimmy a lot of schools feel like it's more responsible to just say no peanut butter when they have a severe peanut allergy, for example.

My stepsister is severely allergic to all fruits, nuts and about a kabillion other things. She has to be super vigilant in restaurants - you wouldn't believe the amount of times that we have been assured something doesn't have nuts and one of us will taste it for her and find a walnut or whatever. But she has lived well past the age of 5, and can be around us when we're eating nuts or what have you.
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Well they can be very serious, as I'm sure you guys know. So what's considered an overboard reaction may depend on the specific case.

I knew a woman who became allergic to iodine in adulthood after giving birth. So she couldn't eat any seafood. And I think she was so alleric that she couldn't be in the same room as any seafood, the smell was enough to cause a reaction. She was that allergic.
Originally Posted by Phoenix
I wonder if it was the smell, or rather some other component that gets in the air.
Originally Posted by CurlyHairedFarmer
I'm highly allergic to crustaceans (shrimp, lobster, crab, crawfish), and just walking into a grocery store where shrimp was being cooked for sale at the fish counter has made me have to immediately leave and puke Don't know or care whether it's the smell or something else, LOL - I get sick as a dog either way. My sister is also allergic and, in fact, just touching a salt shaker that someone else who's eating it has just handled makes her throat start closing up - I'm not quite that bad, except for when trying to dissect a crawfish in biology in 9th grade, before we knew for sure what was going on!

Both of us developed the allergies when we were jr. high school age (and at 53, I've not outgrown them, just developed some new ones), so we were already old enough to understand what we needed to watch out for, etc., but I think being sure the child is well educated and that teachers are informed and watchful is enough without having to police what every other child is allowed to bring into the classroom, etc.

And be sure there is an epi-pen in their backpack (or school office if necessary) and that they and teachers and caretakers know what to do if necessary. For severe allergies, Benadryl doesn't work nearly fast enough, although it can't hurt either.
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well my daughter's allergy is pretty severe. she put a pecan in her mouth and immediately spit it out. instantly her face became swollen, red, and itchy. so shes one of those people who can react without even ingesting the food.

i dont want her to grow up thinking that a pistachio is a death sentence, but i dont want to be too lax about the situation either.
Scary. I hope you can find a workable solution!
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I'm sorry you got those results, Subbrock. ((hugs))

Its a learning process and you'll figure out what you need to do to best protect your daughter. Different people have different comfort zones.

I don't have time to post more right now, but I'll be back!
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well my daughter's allergy is pretty severe. she put a pecan in her mouth and immediately spit it out. instantly her face became swollen, red, and itchy. so shes one of those people who can react without even ingesting the food.

i dont want her to grow up thinking that a pistachio is a death sentence, but i dont want to be too lax about the situation either.
Originally Posted by subbrock
I know there might not seem to a bright side to this story, but at least she didn't breakout being in the same room as the nuts (or touching them).

On a reality TV show about airlines, this guy was having a fit. He was extremely allergic and requested that no one in a certain amount of rows around him be served peanuts (due to allergic reaction to the peanut dust). Well he was flying Southwest and they don't have assigned seating so I guess you can see where this story goes. He was so upset. he had to use his epipen on the plane
Subbrock, is your DD is preschool or daycare? If so, and you haven't already, you'll want to talk to them about procedures already in place for allergies. Hopefully they have some. I'd also be sure that not just one, but several staff know how to use the epipen. The more, the better, as teachers, directors, nurses can be absent,and you want to use it quickly, not want to wait for some one to get to your child.

At my DD's school, the cafeteria has a nut free table for lunch and snack. Any child can sit there, but all lunches must be checked by an adult on duty. Even the one boy with the peanut allergy must be checked. Good thing, as he occasionally buys his lunch, and I've rejected some of his choices, based on the ingredient list. I've also had other kids choose the PB&J lunch, then request to sit there. (Go figure.) Her preschool did something similiar, having one of the tables in the classroom nut free. All children sitting there had to have a nut free lunch.

Side note: as a parent with a child with epilepsy, I know how the parent message boards can be. Parents can get a little crazy there. For the right reasons, but on line, it comes across as overboard! I think they are great resources, but have to put my own spin on the situation, as it works for our family. Hope that makes sense. And, best of luck, I'm sure you are doing a good job dealing with this allergy.
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i dont want her to grow up thinking that a pistachio is a death sentence, but i dont want to be too lax about the situation either.
Originally Posted by subbrock

Being the parent of an allergic kid is a fine and difficult line to walk. My friend's daughter is 11 and has been severely allergic to milk and wheat since birth. She has many allergies, but those are her main ones. I know it's real, because I've seen the kid go into anaphalaxis myself. There are many things she can't eat, but there are also many things she can eat. The problem is...she became so freaking afraid to eat that she barely eats was diagnosed as Failure-To-Thrive at age 5. Her mother is a nervous-panicky type, and I don't think that has helped. She's been treated by eating disorder clinics, because her FTT has now evolved into anorexia. She weighs about 50 pounds now, still severely underweight. She looks skeletal and weak and just very unhealthy. She's homeschooled, because of the allergies, and gets barely any exercise...she's just too tired all the time.

I don't really have any advice. I guess just try to be cautious without showing fear and teaching fear. Hopefully, she'll outgrow the worst of it.
At my DD's school, the cafeteria has a nut free table for lunch and snack. Any child can sit there, but all lunches must be checked by an adult on duty. Even the one boy with the peanut allergy must be checked. Good thing, as he occasionally buys his lunch, and I've rejected some of his choices, based on the ingredient list. I've also had other kids choose the PB&J lunch, then request to sit there. (Go figure.) Her preschool did something similiar, having one of the tables in the classroom nut free. All children sitting there had to have a nut free lunch.
Originally Posted by KurlyKae

This sounds all sounds like a very good idea to me!


i dont want her to grow up thinking that a pistachio is a death sentence, but i dont want to be too lax about the situation either.
Originally Posted by subbrock

Being the parent of an allergic kid is a fine and difficult line to walk. My friend's daughter is 11 and has been severely allergic to milk and wheat since birth. She has many allergies, but those are her main ones. I know it's real, because I've seen the kid go into anaphalaxis myself. There are many things she can't eat, but there are also many things she can eat. The problem is...she became so freaking afraid to eat that she barely eats was diagnosed as Failure-To-Thrive at age 5. Her mother is a nervous-panicky type, and I don't think that has helped. She's been treated by eating disorder clinics, because her FTT has now evolved into anorexia. She weighs about 50 pounds now, still severely underweight. She looks skeletal and weak and just very unhealthy. She's homeschooled, because of the allergies, and gets barely any exercise...she's just too tired all the time.

I don't really have any advice. I guess just try to be cautious without showing fear and teaching fear. Hopefully, she'll outgrow the worst of it.
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves

This is so sad! I'm sure it really is very hard to find a balance between a healthy awareness/caution and an irrational, obsessive fear about it, especially with a parent like this.
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