The Big Es of Allergies
As most know the EpiPen is an important safety tool for those with severe food allergies. Today we want to talk about another tool that will help you stay well equipped when fighting allergic reactions. We will give you a hint...this tool starts with an E and isn't something you carry but something you do. Can you guess it? We'll help you out, the tool is Education.
In order to fight allergies you have to make sure you and your family stay informed. We know this task can seem a bit daunting with so much information out there. That's why we want to give a few simple tips and tricks to help make this process as Easy as possible ;).
Google Alert it! Let Google do the work for you by setting up a few Google Alerts. I would start with an alert for your specific allergy, food recalls, and your EpiPen carrier / medication you take for your symptoms. By setting up a google alert you don't have to do any grunt work searching through the news or internet for new information about products or your allergy. You will be notified on a daily basis keeping you well informed on new news that relates to your allergy and product recalls. Click HERE for instructions on creating a Google Alert.
Read labels! We cannot stress how important it is to always read the packaging of food products. Some labels will make it easy listing top allergens like this:
Contains: Milk, Eggs, and Soy.
Other labels you will have to read through each ingredient to make sure the product is safe for you to eat. Even if your allergen is not listed in the ingredients list it is important to look for sentences about how products are made such as:
Made in a facility that handles tree nuts and peanuts.
Always do further research if you are unsure about a product. Make sure to check with your doctor, the supplier, or support groups for any products that you are uncertain about. Remember that it is always best to play it safe when dealing with unfamiliar brands.
Use lists. When you find products that are safe and that work for your family keep track of them. If you are looking to try new products there are tons of websites online that have compiled meal, snack, and drink lists. Cooking can also provide additional challenges when working around an allergy. Checkout Allergic Living and Kids With Food Allergies for recipe inspiration. Another great resource are food allergy support groups. Checkout our helpful link list below to get in touch!
Having a severe food allergy is not easy. But remember you and your family are not alone. The internet can be a very useful tool through this journey. Remember to always double check the ingredient list before purchasing or trying any product. Check with your doctor or the supplier for any products that you are uncertain about. Or check in with a support group. Other families have tons of experience with allergies and have great advice.
Helpful Allergy Friendly Websites
This marks the first post of our series Wisdom Wednesdays where we will be sharing useful tips and tricks to help keep your family and little ones safe. Feel free to share more tips or let us know what you think!