Food Allergy Guide for the Newly Diagnosed
The mission behind Best Allergy Sites is to bring allergy and intolerance sufferers up to date information and support. We serve as a food allergy guide and allergy support community.
Getting a food allergy diagnosis is a life changing event. It can be overwhelming at first, but there are many resources and allergy information available on Best Allergy Sites and through your allergist to help you and your family adjust to a new allergy friendly lifestyle.
Here are some tips on managing a new food allergy diagnosis:
Give yourself a little bit of time to process this life changing event. The concept of a life threatening food allergy is overwhelming and terrifying, so take time to acknowledge your emotions then move forward.
Your only defense against a potentially life threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis is a shot of epinephrine. Make sure to fill your epinephrine auto-injector prescription and put a reminder in your calendar to replace it when expired. Learn how to use it by requesting a trainer auto-injector from your pharmacist and ask them to demonstrate how to use it.
Learn what the different names for your allergen are and what types of food you need to avoid. Peanut allergy, egg allergy, dairy allergy and nut allergy are among the most common food allergies. You can find food allergy information on BestAllergySites.com
Learn about allergic reactions and the signs of anaphylaxis.
Study food labeling laws in your country. Note that in most cases, manufacturing companies are not required by law to disclose cross-contact risks, so you may need to contact food manufacturers directly to find out if packaged goods were made in a facility on on the same line that processes your allergens.
Review all items in your refrigerator and pantry, read every label and determine whether they are “safe” for the person with a food allergy.
If your household has decided to keep food with allergens in the home for other members of the family to consume, create a system that will separate food with allergens from food that is safe for the person with food allergies to consume. Consider starting a color coded label system, or use different shelves. This can help minimize any errors, especially if people are in a rush or tired. Note that anything purchased in a bulk store is not safe for food allergies, as cross-contact risks exist.
The people closest to you will need to know about your food allergies, how to administer an epinephrine auto-injector and recognize signs of anaphylaxis. Consider creating an easy to follow one page information sheet that can be displayed on their refrigerator.
Make sure you tell them about cross-contact risks and safe food handling practices.
There are many food allergy support groups available for you to ask questions and discuss feelings with people that have gone through the same situations and emotions that you are currently experiencing. Your allergist's office may be able to connect you with some local support groups, or you can find food allergy information and support groups for peanut allergy, egg allergy, dairy allergy, nut allergy and most allergens through online groups, forums on social networking sites.
A food allergy can distort the way you look at food. What is supposed to be nourishing and life giving is suddenly seen as dangerous and life threatening. Re-discover your love for food by experimenting with allergy-friendly recipes found on BestAllergySites.com
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