Being a mom, do you feel lost, overwhelmed or alone? Have you just embarked on your food allergy journey along with your kid? Has your kid been recently diagnosed with some kind of severe food allergy after months of baffling tummy issues or rashes all over his body? Whichever way it is, it is true that adjusting your life with food allergies among your kids can soon become overwhelming. Allergy-anxious parents watch out for signs and symptoms and they hope that their kids too will be able to play, eat and walk around the cafeteria of their schools without the fear of allergy hanging over their heads.
In recent years, research on food allergy and food intolerances has exploded like never before. In the history of this field, there never has been so much progress regarding the understanding of reasons behind food allergies and developing new ways of treatment. The MD and head of allergy division of the University of California, Andrew Saxon said that the revolution brought about in the field of science is blessing us with abilities which we’ve never dreamt of.
Food allergies were virtually off the radar
Yes, there was a time when the issue of food allergy was totally ignored in public to an extent where the medical technicians were not even equipped to handle any sudden reaction. A decade ago, people were supposed to call 911 for the EMTs to arrive. But despite their timely arrival, they either didn’t have epinephrine at their disposal or they had it but didn’t know how to administer it. Allergic kids were even taught how they shouldn’t pay heed to their problem. They were teased for their allergies and they were made to believe that they were different from others. This made them hide their allergies which in turn put them at enhanced risk.
Now we’ve become allergy-savvy – People have come to terms with it
Since 2002, more than 45 states passed laws which demanded the EMTs to carry epinephrine with them always. Although allergic kids realized that they’re in some way different from others, this no longer held them back. This change is probably due to the fact that food allergies and food intolerances had already become extremely common. As per the CDC or Centers for Disease Control, the prevalence of food allergies rose to around 10% among the children under the age of 4 years.
How should moms cope with the challenges of food allergies?
All of us face obstacles in our lives but they come in different ways which can make some paralyzed while dealing with such hardships. When moms initially find their kids suffering from some kind of food allergies, their brain goes blank until they get to know how they can focus on overcoming it. Read on to know more on dealing with food intolerances and food allergies.
Food allergies and intolerance – What is it?
Whenever we eat, the immune system of the human body releases antibodies and this is when these foods are called reactive foods as these foods lead to a sensitivity or allergy. Due to the production of an antibody, food allergy occurs as an instant reaction. On the contrary, food sensitivity is a more delayed reaction which is caused by another kind of antibody. Hence, if your kid has a food allergy, he will react instantly after eating the respective food and if it is a food sensitivity, it can take a few hours and days to develop the symptoms.
The big question – What is to be done?
The foremost step that you should take is to speak to a doctor. Let your doctor know about it if you think your kid has a food allergy or food sensitivity. Although there are products like goat milk powder which can be used among kids and adults who are suffering from food allergies, yet consulting a doctor is important. Get your kid tested and keep a tab on the unusual reaction caused by foods. Try out an elimination diet which comes in handy along with the suspicion of food sensitivity. Here are a few other steps to take.
- Curate a list of items: How about having a list of items which cause food allergy being stuck on top of the door? In case the list is too overwhelming, you can make a second list of the things that your kid can have freely. This way you’ll be able to focus on the positive and you can also have options for cooking.
- Go through labels: Going through food labels can initially be overwhelming but when you learn how to read it, you’ll always remain grateful. Read the label carefully and avert eating everything that you know can have a bad impact on your kid. Check out the ingredient list and know if there’s anything sensitive or allergic.
- Create a plan for cooking meals: Whenever moms have a plan ready for the meals that they’ll make, they think they have full control over things. Make an inventory of useful items and try out a few meals for your family. When you have a meal plan for your kids, you can regain some of your lost sanity. What could be a better feeling than seeing your kids enjoy the meals that they love without the fear of allergies?
- Go out for shopping: Once you take full control on your pantry, you’ll surely find a few items missing out. If you have to go gluten-free and you require supplements of what you called staple diet previously, you should go out shopping on your own. Keep a list in your hands and a plan in your mind and grocery shopping will also become an enjoyable experience.
Being a mom, if you begin to eliminate the foods which harm your kid’s health, their gut will begin to heal and the symptoms will gradually ease off. Therefore, moms should take into account the above-listed strategies to cure food allergies and intolerances and give their kids a better life.