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 Post subject: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:35 pm 
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Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:33 pm
Posts: 429
Location: DC metro
For those of you with food allergies or kids/loved ones with food allergies, do you avoid things processed in plants that also process the allergen? I picked up a box of Barilla pasta, which--wheat and water, right?--is processed in a plant that uses eggs (which my son is allergic to). Same question for dairy allergies, really. I just found out after a whole host of tests that I'm allergic to milk which I wouldn't have cared about at all (because really now) except now I'm worried about cross-contamination with the few processed goods I buy or when I go out to eat. Anyway, am I being overly paranoid? What do/would you do?


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 Post subject: Re: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 2011 6:07 pm 
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Huffs Nooch

Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:09 am
Posts: 143
It depends on how severe the allergy is. I have several food allergies (they are rated as moderate) but I don't worry about foods processed in plants with foods I am allergic too, even nuts and peanuts (which I am forbidden to eat). I can even eat tiny amounts of foods I am allergic to in a day as long as it's like a little wheat, but not wheat and soy since allergies have kind of a cumulative effect. My allergist tells me I do have to stay away from nuts and peanuts though because if any allergy will get worse or cause an anaphylaxis reaction those will be the ones to do it (I also have several other non food allergies I have to worry about).


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 Post subject: Re: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:06 pm 
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Trapped On A Desert Island With A Cow

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:33 pm
Posts: 429
Location: DC metro
Thanks! I am definitely going to err on the side of caution with cross-contamination in food processing plants for my son's egg allergy, even though it's not severe. (It's a little overwhelming that even things like dried egg-free pasta are made on the same equipment as eggy stuff. Blech.)

I'm waiting back to talk to my allergist about my own food allergies. I had the skin testing and got huge hives, but I'm waiting for the full results of that with the blood testing in a couple of weeks. Crossing my fingers, anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:23 pm 
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Because Bob Barker Told Me To
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Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:08 pm
Posts: 932
Location: PDX
I agree with Julie, it depends on how serious the allergy is and synergistic effects. My sister is allergic to just about everything, from minor to really severe reactions. She has problems with cross contamination when eating out at restaurants, and has to restrict herself to restaurants that know her well. From bitter experience, others often don't take her seriously until she vomits (her initial reaction before her throat swells.) I use a special cutting board when she eats at my house, because cucumbers hit her really hard.

She hasn't had any cross-contamination problems with processed foods that I know of, and shellfish are a problem for her. Still, I'd stay away from those multi-product processors if you or your son's allergies are life-threatening.

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Formerly Kaleicious. I still love kale, but no more than lots of other garden greens too! Orach is currently my favorite.


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 Post subject: Re: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Fri Feb 11, 2011 1:14 am 
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Huffs Nooch

Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:09 am
Posts: 143
I know it's really overwhelming at first and I would talk to your allergist but I bet cross contamination won't be an issue since your son's allergy isn't severe. I remember getting my first allergy results back to find I was allergic to everything I was tested for. I swore I'd never be able to eat anything but it was also nice knowing why my body hated food all of the time. Corn was the absolute worst one. Corn and soy...they're pretty much in everything.

I did an elimination diet and that really helped me. I was slowly able to add back very small amounts of certain types of the offending allergens into my diet and even still, they vary. Sometimes they are better, and sometimes even the smallest amounts make me really really sick, throat swollen shut, rash, etc. Tree nuts will always give me hives and make my eyes swell shut so I'm super nervous about other vegans offering me baked goods or any food that I'm not sure of the ingredients because I'm afraid it was made with almond milk or ground nuts or something like that and I'll eat by accident without asking first.


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 Post subject: Re: A food allergy/cross-contamination question...
PostPosted: Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:37 pm 
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Saggy Butt
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Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 3:48 pm
Posts: 307
Location: Texas
I'm really allergic to eggs. I've never had issues with cross-contamination on packaged food even when it says may contain trace amounts or processed on the same equipment. I think they always clean things really well but they have to say this to cover their asparagi.


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