Friday, April 30, 2010

Thankful

I came across this video about kids with food allergies, and realized again just how fortunate I am that although my children can get quite sick from eating the wrong foods, they do not have anaphalactic reactions.  Everyone should watch this video.  You never know when you will meet a family who does have to worry for their child's life when it comes to the food they eat.  Just knowing that you care enough to try to understand means the world to these parents!

4 comments:

Terry @ Breathing Grace said...

I wonder if anyone has bothered to research why there seems to be such an exponential increase in the number of people with food allergies in the past 20 years or so.

When I came of age in the 70's and 80's, I cannot remember one child who was deathly allergic to anything. My husband said he couldn't either. It's a very curious mystery.

My heart goes out to these families.

Johanna said...

I have thought of that very thing! I have done a lot of reading on that and the theories that are thrown around are many. The ones that seem to hold the most merit include the preservatives added to our food, the general processed-ness of our food, and the genetic modification – specifically with corn. That last one is the one that intrigues me the most. Much of the corn grown in the US is not grown from natural seed which contains slight genetic modifications from generation to generation, but from seed clones developed to be disease resistant and give higher yields. Although higher yields and less disease sounds like a good thing, our bodies weren’t designed to intake the exact same genetic copy of a grain or food over and over and over. Eventually the body thinks it is being attacked by this substance and fights it, and an allergy is born. With corn, it is extra scary, because corn is in EVERYTHING. Not only is it in the form of corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup, but on the label when it says dextrose and citric acid. Corn is added to most extracts and flavorings, powdered sugar, baking powder, salt and seasoning blends, cured meats, adhesives, children’s medications, vitamins, bath powders, soaps, and plastic food wrappers. We were at a museum once that boasted that all their “plastic” cups were made entirely of corn so they were biodegradable! Needless to say, we cannot buy a drink there. Anyway, all that to say that we are exposed to so much more corn than we were 30 years ago when this technology wasn’t invented that our bodies are struggling with it all. And don’t even get me started on the fact that the government has made it so that this cannot change with the high sugar tariffs and subsidies to corn growers… And this is just an example with one common allergen. (And it is very common, even though the government also has not included corn in the "great 8" that now have to be bolded on labels...Gee I wonder why??) The same is true for so many things.

That may have been more of an answer than you were looking for! :) But since I have 19 foods I have to carefully check for on every label, and my life is filled with remembering what food we can rotate and what we must avoid and when we last had this or that…I am a bit passionate about it all!

Joanna said...

My brother is highly allergic to bananas and other fruit and lots of grasses. His throat would swell up and his lips would get all big. I was and still am always so grateful that I don't have allergies and that my kids don't have allergies.

That's really freaky about the corn, Johanna.

Meagan said...

My brother has dealt with this for 31 years. He has a milk allergy, and has to homemake everything. Everyone always down plays it to milk intolerance, but it isn't.... it is full out milk allergy just like they were saying on the video. It was easier once we didn't have to check labels, but it is a disability for my brother. My brother is a product of the 80's so go figure.