Friday, July 30, 2010

I get to try foods!

After this week's allergy test adventure the doctor has said he wants me to begin trying previously "banned" foods! On this list is: (drum roll please)

  • OATS
  • CORN
Start the celebration and bring on food I love!!!!

Taking it slow and starting with small amounts will be key here (I already went to far with dairy once this week- not a good idea). I think corn will be the best one to start with due to the fact that it is in almost everything that is not homemade. I'm not going to go crazy and have corn on the cob but maybe something with corn starch in it is a good start.

Any suggestions of what I should try this weekend? 

Monday, July 26, 2010

Allergy Testing

After living in Florida for almost 9 months I decided it was time to get set up with an allergist near my house. Yes Mom I know I should have done it right after I moved. I was still a bit unsure about how to handle all these new and changing allergies so I figured it would be smart to talk to someone who knows what they are talking about. 

After meeting with the doctor and going over my allergy history he decided it would be best to have a full allergy panel skin test done. I hadn't been tested for environmental allergies (pollen, trees, grasses, weeds, etc.) since high school so it seemed like a good idea. For those of you who have had the prick test done before, you know what this entails. But for everyone else, the process is as follows:
  • the nurse marks up your back with a pen
  • the nurse then pricks you with small needles (today I was lucky enough to have about 60 of those pricks)
  • You lay on your stomach for 20 minutes while everything "settles in"
  • The doctor then comes in to read your test

While this seems like an easy test (and I'm sure it is compared to some medical tests) it is not comfortable. I knew I was allergic to a lot of nature so I expected to itch a bit. But you know you have bad allergies when the nurse comes into the room after you festering for 20 minutes and says "Oh hunny...Let me go get the doctor now". She then proceeded to get a camera (and the doctor of course) and ask to document the results. These are my results :-)

So this seems really bad but there is really good news in here. See the right side of the picture where there isn't much red....that was some food allergies!!!! I have been told that I can try eating corn and oats again!

I may still have a reaction to either but the doctor isn't worried about me going into Anaphylactic Shock. I was also told that I can have dairy in small amounts. These 3 foods can change the way I eat by not being afraid to eat out. So over the next few weeks I'm going to be trying these in moderation and we'll see where I can get. There is still a lot to get figure out with my allergies but the doctor also wants me to start on allergy shots to try and reduce my reactions. He said it could reduce my food allergies over time so here's hoping!

Till next time....

What do I eat?

After the last post I had several friends asking what do you eat? That is pretty much the same question I asked myself after all the blood work came back. So for the last few months I have eliminated the foods I reacted to and tried to replace them with equally nutritional items. I will say that Whole Foods and Rollin Oats employees have been very helpful in assisting me to find new foods that I can eat.

I now eat a lot of eggs and cereal for breakfast, turkey sandwiches (with hummus and bacon) on wheat bread for lunch, couscous, cooked veggies and chicken (or some form of meat) for dinners and leftovers. Snack food is definitely the hardest these days. There is one type of pretzel crisps that are safe and I can have hummus and homemade guacamole. The other good snack that I have become a big fan of is "fake peanut butter" (soy butter) and lingonberry jam (from IKEA) on mini flour tortillas.

While I did have to cut out a lot of food options, there are still plenty of replacements. I even found an ice cream replacement (coconut milk ice cream) that actually tastes pretty darn good. My "fake oreos" have real mint oils instead of flavor additives and the goats milk yogurt is surprisingly good on my cereal.

Till next time...

    Tuesday, July 20, 2010

    Learning about Food Allergies

    Within the last year and a half I have been developing food allergies. I say developing because they don't just pop up over night but they can also disappear over time. The most common allergy discussed is the peanut allergy. It's much more common amongst children and they often outgrow the allergy. I first started reacting to peanuts and almonds so I went to the allergist....allergic! After a year and a half of avoiding peanuts and tree nuts, I went back to the doctor hoping to find out that I had outgrown the allergies (the doctor said it was likely). However...

    ...After both a skin prick test and a blood test here is the list of current food allergies:

    • Peanuts
    • Tree Nuts
    • Sunflower Seeds
    • Sesame Seeds
    • Oats
    • Barley
    • Rice
    • Dairy
    • Sulfite's
    • Corn (in all forms)
    • Raw Fruits and Veggies (Oral Allergy Syndrome)
      • Oranges
      • Apples
      • Peaches
      • Strawberries
      • Celery
      • Carrots
      • Tomatoes

    No wonder I have been feeling off, but I should mention that I am not deathly allergic to any of these but rather very uncomfortable after eating said food.

    So now I am learning to make these allergies fit into life. I have eliminated the foods but do occasionally "cheat" and eat something I shouldn't. If anyone is learning to eliminate certain foods from your diet I would suggest not eating them (especially in moderate to large quantities) without fully acknowledging the consequences. 

    So now you have an idea of what foods I'm avoiding. So far the biggest challenge has been avoiding corn. At first I thought that one's easy, I don't even like corn on the cob! Well turns out I like corn in MANY other forms. Take a challenge and the next time you go to the grocery store check all your labels for corn (corn starch, corn syrup, corn protein, and the hundreds of other names that corn can have) and try to find all the foods on a normal grocery list. 

    If anyone has any suggestions on the elimination diet feel free to share.

    Till next time...

    Monday, July 19, 2010

    In the blogger world

    I'm new to the blogger world. I just started blogging for work and I read various blogs on a regular basis and the whole idea intrigued me so I figured I would give it a try. I'm sure this blog will take many twists and turns just as life does but I'm ready for the ride. The name of the blog was inspired but my latest purchase....a Honda Fit! The word "Fit" has began to wiggle it's way into a lot of my life lately. A lot of new things and experiences are managing to "fit" my life just right and I am having to make other things fit the way life is right now. The biggest change is having to "fit" new food allergies into my daily life. I will write about restaurants that are good or bad about allergies and other food experiences.

    Feedback is encouraged and thanks for reading!