Stripes: Food Allergies

As you may or may not already know, I found out several weeks ago (via a blood test, so it is legit) that I have a ton of food allergies. 28 foods to be exact with the most obnoxious being wheat, gluten, dairy, yeast, eggs, fish, shellfish, and peanuts (yep, that’s 6 of the top 8 most common food allergens). Since finding out what all I am allergic to, I have [for the most part] successfully removed all these foods from my diet What I did not expect, however, is how hard it can be to fully remove these foods from your diet!

I feel like I should preface with I am in no way a medical professional (the last science class I took was geology and that was 4 years ago…yeah 100% not a doctor/nurse/dietician). So you should of course run everything by your doctor before making any huge life changes in regards to food allergies. Furthermore, everyone’s bodies react differently to different allergens so what works or happens to me may be totally different from what happens to someone else.

In these past weeks I’ve turned to the internet-I mean what else is a modern girl supposed to do? I’ve done hours of research, chatted with several friends with similar (or worse) food allergies, and even created a pinterest board of foods I can eat so when I feel sad about not being able to eat my old favorites I can find something equally as awesome. Since I’ve relied so much on info from other bloggers (seriously, dozens!) I decided that every once in a while, when I find something awesome pertaining to food allergies, I want post about it so we can keep the info flowing around the internet.

I suppose my advice for anyone who has recently discovered they have a (or ten or twenty or fifty) food allergy is that it is so worth it to take the food out of your diet, even if just to test to see what the food actually does to you. This detox period will be frustrating. I experienced intense, sudden nausea, headaches, and a lot of emotional distress- realizing that you can’t eat anything aside from a side salad on a menu is beyond upsetting especially while you watch your friends and family eat all your old favorite foods. The cravings suck. I’m not going to lie and say I never craved anything while I was detoxing; I missed all my old favorites so bad. In turn, though, I did learn that I have a level of will power I did not previously know I had. Through my detox process I learned that all the stomach aches and pains I perviously thought were normal could just disappear, I actually have a pretty flat stomach (seriously, not to brag but I almost have abs! I was beyond thrilled the morning I realized this fact!) when I’m not bloated from wheat, my sense of smell and taste improved, I respond differently (way healthier) to stress, and I am generally happier.

Sweater: The Gap Outlet (old), Shirt: JcPenny (old), Belt: PacSun (old), Leggings: The Loft (recent). Of course I had to add one silly picture-I'm not quite sure how I ended up like this in this picture but it sure felt right in the moment it was taken.

I guess what I am trying to say is I totally think it is worth getting tested by a doctor via blood or scratch test and if you are allergic to a lot of stuff (or, of course, just one or two foods) there are a ton of resources on the internet and I hope to be one even if it is not the main intent of this blog. Through my own journey to an allergen free life I hope that I can help other people live a healthy and allergen free. I am hoping to post links to other blogs, recipes (including my attempts at gluten/egg/dairy free baking which I have been too chicken to try thus far), tips, and my personal experiences as I settle further into my new lifestyle.

Anyone else have food allergies? What are some of your best tips, tricks, advice, blogs, or pinboards that have helped you?

-Stripes

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