In early summer we had our youngest son have a new allergy panel done, along with a blood panel. He hadn’t had a test done since he was 16 months old, and at 4½ years, they felt he was ready for it. We knew he was allergic to peanuts, cashews, and eggs – with a few other thrown in, but hadn’t looked at each item separately. And I wanted a better base line for him, before school started.
His numbers are not inspiring, to say the least. One good piece though is his Egg Yolk allergy has gone down to normal levels. It is why you have seen me cooking with eggs again. He can’t eat them alone yet, but they want them in the food. It helps build up tolerance. Oddly enough, his numbers for pecans are “non-allergic”, but they don’t want him to have any. Too high a risk of contamination from other tree nuts. (And yes, his peanut allergy is really 100.00 and above. It is that scary.)
But there is the unknown. That he will have a random allergic reaction to a food. That was how we found out about golden peas. Two summers ago I had made a sandwich for him, while in the middle of nowhere (literally, we were on the back side of Mt. St. Helens, two hours from even a small town), using a peanut butter substitute made of roasted golden peas, Sneaky Chef’s No-Nut Butter. He had an odd reaction on his face. It was enough that I never gave it again, and filed it away mentally to get him tested. His allergy doctor wasn’t so sure, but relented and tested him (after all, it is us paying for these tests!). And it came back positive. So I was right.
So two weeks ago, I had made Alistaire a lunch for his field trip, a sandwich with Sunbutter. I have cooked with Sunbutter quite often over the years – and he does eat it – in foods. He had never had it alone. I had noticed his face was really warm after lunch, but we were also outside in pouring rain, and were in a warm bus going home. The next day, I made him lunch before school, and he asked for the same sandwich. I made one, and within minutes I noticed his face was red and he had minor hives around his face, where the Sunbutter had touched (he had it all over his skin).
It wasn’t Epi-Pen worthy, but it was a wait and watch. I cleaned his face off, and washed out his mouth. He didn’t go to school that day, so I could keep an eye on him. I did though put a call into his allergy doctor, and requested a blood panel test for sunflower.
It came back, and while I don’t love seeing yet another known allergy, at least I know I didn’t imagine it!
The good news is last week I found a jar of Wow Butter while we were traveling, and he tolerates is. He has no allergy to soy. I also picked up jars of I.M.Healthy soy nut butter to try out as well. Both come from “safe” plants. So I at least have something to work with for now. You just have to keep going and looking to the future.
Which speaking of travel…..
We had to fly to Florida this past week for family issues. We fly Delta, as normally they are the most friendly airline for allergies. This can change of course, depending on the airport and who is working the gate. For example, in Seattle, they are usually top-notch, and will announce pre-boarding that there is an allergy – and ask people to refrain, and then do it on board as well. Atlanta is also usually a good gamble. Tampa, Florida…not so much. The gate worker frostily told us that they would only do 3 rows in front, 3 rows in back. However, my husband mentioned it upon boarding to the flight crew – and they didn’t serve peanuts. So you have to make sure you ask both times. As well, ALWAYS put in your allergy note when booking, then make sure you mention it to the gate, so you can load first…and win a non-existing award for fastest clean down of a row of seats. Having learned the bad way, we make sure he flies in long pants and long-sleeved shirts. He also walks arms crossed down the plane aisle. That helped tremendously this set of flights, and we had no issues.