A Guide to Food “Allergy” Etiquette

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Likely you’ve noticed, but there are a growing number of people with food “issues.” It might be a food intolerance, a food sensitivity, or even a very serious, life threatening food allergy. I’m one of them. Maybe you are too.

But maybe you are not. And maybe you are now daily exposed to people talking about their food avoidances in the work place to stores promoting the latest in allergy-free products, and are even told not to bring your favorite foods to schools or potlucks for the sake of a small minority that might have an adverse reaction to such foods. SO annoying, right? But seriously, does this make you angry?

Just let me tell you, no one chooses to have food issues. Parents do not choose for their sons or daughters to go into anaphylactic shock when exposed to peanuts, dairy or any other random foods that might normally seem completely benign. In fact, it’s something all of us parents fear. While you are grumbling about peanut butter, can you imagine the fear of that parent praying their child does not accidentally ingest or even come in contact with the food that could land them in the hospital, or worse, while they are at school or out in the world? In a far less serious example, I did not choose to break out in painful acne all over my back every time I eat dairy. And others did not choose to experience terrible gas and bloating when eating foods with gluten, sugar, soy, etc. I know sometimes it may seem that people are using food avoidance as a diet or other regimen apart from a true food allergy, but give them the benefit of the doubt. All of us in a second flat would choose to be able to eat anything we desired if given the ability. Oh how I would LOVE to eat a piece of cheesecake without paying a price. Or really, just to have a simple latte. Or buy a thick chocolate chip cookie full of high quality butter. Great, now my mouth is watering, and I digress.

You may be wondering what the differences between food allergies, food intolerances and food sensitivities are, anyway. Let me break it down real quick so you can a better sense of where people are coming from.

Food Allergy: This is by far the most serious. This is an immune-modulated reaction related to the IgE antibody. These reactions usually occur within minutes of eating a food  먹튀검증and can range from something as simple as a mouth rash to more serious symptoms such as hives, vomiting, or anaphylactic shock.

 

 

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