Not only is it National Celiac Awareness Month, but this week is National Food Allergy Awareness Week. Take a few minutes, if you will, to educate someone about food allergies and the impact they have on your life.
Currently, the only foods we avoid in our house are gluten, because of me. Braden, however, is currently running through some testing. He has an EGD coming up next week. In preparation for that, the gastro ran a series of tests, including a food allergy panel. It came back positive to wheat (not surprised), peanuts, soy, corn, and sesame. He will soon visit an allergist to determine which of these are truly problems (hopefully peanuts is just cross-reacting with soy).
Whatever the outcome is, we will accommodate. And by accommodate, I do not mean that we will make him separate meals. We know how to live without gluten, we can live without the others, too. If corn is a problem, then I guess it will be time to start making bread again, since we usually just make our sandwiches with corn tortillas (and we can make or buy other tortillas, too).
It will take more planning and a little more work, but my child’s health is extremely important to me.
At Braden and Carter’s school, they don’t serve peanuts, but children are allowed to bring them. The children who are allergic to peanuts have their own peanut-free table. I never send any peanut products to school with the boys, because I don’t want one of their friends to have a reaction to being around them. Have you ever seen a kindergartener keep his hands to himself for more than 10 minutes? I certainly haven’t.
I wanted to share this photo with you that I found on facebook. How often have we, as the gluten-free or food allergic, been left out of an activity because of the food? Sometimes we go, get in the middle and make it an awesome time, even though we avoid the food like the plague. Sometimes we go, sit on the sidelines, and make polite conversation. Sometimes we avoid the event altogether, knowing it may be too difficult to keep the food away from us.
The Arizona Food Allergy Alliance posted this photo on facebook as a means of sharing about Food Allergy Awareness Week. Check out the AFAA website. They have some pretty neat silicone bracelets for sale, that say Ask | Read | Eat Safe. This can help remind children what they need to do to keep themselves healthy and safe, as well as reminding those who may be feeding them.
Take the time to share the message. You may be saving a life, or at least making one better.