Friday, October 21, 2016

Teen Summit coming up!!!!

Are you ready for the FARE Teen Summit?  This year it's in Milwaukee, WI-- instead of the usual DC. The venue may have changed but the heart of the Summit is still the same:
   We'll scale the heights and grapple with the lows of everything teen-aged and food allergy. 
  Restaurants. Dating. Travel. Sports. College. Parents. (!) Epi-pens and risk taking. 
 And we'll laugh and I'll cry-- I always do-- and we'll make new friends and catch up with old ones. And we'll watch as our strong, brave, and wonderful kids have a blast. 
Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Community vs Customization in food allergies

Strange title , I know. 
But I'm referencing a discussion-- via email-- I've been having with a woman who is starting a Food Allergy website gathering information on restaurants and cities and where to eat. The plan going forward is to have an app that can personalize the information for your particular allergies...
  Well, I initially took umbrage because the beautiful first e- news alert had a picture of a luscious biscuit and gravy -- a specialty in the city the site was reporting on. Well... 
  My kid can't eat that!-- and lots of others can't either. It's loaded with at least three of the top allergens: Dairy. Egg. Wheat.  No mention of that possibility. 
   And the article went on to discuss restaurants where, while they serve boiled peanuts-- the city specialty, the servers were conscious of nut  allergies. And, also, some of the desserts are made with nut flours, but they're kept separate from the other flours. 
     I emailed the founder of this website, noting that many families -- mine included --wouldn't be comfortable with that level of possible peanut contamination. And our mentors at FARE and other resources reiterate: try to stay away from  places with likely cross contamination. 
  And, I further told the founder that since the site discussed largely peanut allergens--with a nod to gluten free, I didn't  find it very helpful. Many families contend with more than  peanuts. 
  The response to my email was that the information was general and that the founders were  hoping to develop an app that families could customize for their personal allergens. 
  Which got me thinking: 
Where's the community in that? I want to share: Best practices. Information. Experiences. I think that's as important as a " customized app" for one family. 
  And I treasure my food allergy community, those people who help me get from A to Z and skip Eggs inbetween.