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SobaAddict70

Food Allergies/Food Phobias

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Oh my god.  My inner WASP cries for you.  That must be tough, though I'm glad to hear it doesn't affect your dessert enjoyment!

I was never much of a drinker, but there are some major advantages. Less calories from alcohol means a higher ratio of desserts for my overall calorie intake! I always try to make up for those lost calories with extra portions of dessert.:biggrin:


Edited by sanrensho (log)

Baker of "impaired" cakes...

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I could never figure out why I loved the taste of a blue cheese sauce, but could not eat blue cheese. Every time I tried to eat some I would gag and have to spit it out. It turns out I am allergic to penicillin and I did not know that the "blue" in blue cheese was penicillin mold. Funny how your body knows what to do. :shock:

As others have mentioned experiencing a funny feeling or taste when they try a particular food, it may be that they are allergic, but have not had a full blown reaction. Allergic reactions are often mild the first time and increase in intensity with each subsequent exposure.

My niece is staying with us this year while she attends university and if I have heard "I don't like that" once I've heard it a thousand times these past six months. Our only rule is that she try everything that is prepared at least once, and then if she really doesn't like it she doesn't have to eat it. Well for someone who doesn't like green beans, beets, potatoes, squash, greens, beef, pork and and lamb, she has sure been packing it away and going for seconds. Her mother is really pissed because she still won't eat these items when she goes home.


Dawn aka shrek

Let the eating begin!

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This is definitely a trend in restaurants, one which I cannot begin to fathom.

One the one hand I had a customer who ordered a ribeye steak topped with bleu cheese and almost  immediately went into anaphylactic shock after a single bite, nearly dying on the dining room floor.

Turns out he is severely allergic to penicillin and yet he never bothered to consider what foods might contain it (the ‘bleu’ in bleu cheese being Penicillium roqueforti ).

Exactly. I have an allergy to penicillin and to mushrooms. Those are fatal. I do have lesser reactions to bleu cheese and other molds like the mold on bread. Please don't try to sneak mushrooms into my dishes!


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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The "there, I've fooled you" concept I find troubling. I once had a girlfriend who was allergic to onions. We would go out to dinner and she would GRILL the waiter without mercy about the menu, and what could be made sans bulb. She would get very strident about it (to the point where I'd be embarrased and want to crawl under the table), but the few times where the chef/waiter would do a "there, I've fooled you" her throat would close and she'd go into convulsions. I got fairly good with the epipen in the arse, but it always was frightening to me, painful and humiliating to her and caused a scene every time. I've had similar problems with a friend who couldn't tolerate black pepper, and a friend who was allergic to crab.

The whole reason for this minor diatribe is simple... don't try to fool people about their food sensitivities! I eat almost everything... but I avoid uncooked green bell pepper. I like it. It doesn't like me. If you serve it to me I'll eat it. But for the next 12 to 24 hours (urp) :blink: it can (urp) :blink: repeat on (urp) :blink: me. Urp :blink: . So-- If I shy away from bell pepper you'll give me a break? Try my roasted multicolor bell peppers. They'll make you a convert. But the raw ones? Nope! (Urp) :blink:

hvr


Edited by HVRobinson (log)

"Cogito Ergo Dim Sum; Therefore I think these are Pork Buns"

hvrobinson@sbcglobal.net

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But if anybody told me they were allergic to peas I'd kick them out of my house. There's nothing in peas to be allergic to.  :laugh:

Not exactly true. Some are allergic to different chemicals within the peanut, which are also present in peas themselves. I know there are unrelated botanically, but there are at least similar substances in both. It can be enough to cause a reaction.

Oh, don't get me wrong, I am VERY serious about allergies ....I was just being silly when I wrote that.

Although....I didn't know there WAS anything in greenies that one could be allergic to, save the acidity in peppers or the like. Thanks for the info.

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First, let me say this: I am not allergic to bell peppers, but I am exceedingly sensitve to them raw or cooked if the skin is left on. A 1" by 1" square will still be giving me gas for a good five days or more. So, not wanting to go thru a whole song and dance about my guts; I say I'm allergic to them. They give me a bad reaction, only not one defined as an "allergic" reaction.

I have problems with peppers, too...and raw onions. I love peppers, but my tummy just doesn't like them. Need to inflate a zeplin? Feed me stuffed bell peppers! Very uncomfortable! But...I love peppers. I pick them out of salads, and if I do cook a sauce with them, I have to pull them out after a spell simmering...to get some of the flavor without the agony. For onions, I've discovered that if I rinse them under cold water (chopped or sliced) for about 10 minutes, I can tolerate them better. Don't ask about the incident with the French onion soup...

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I'm also very troubled by the "there, I've fooled you!" concept.

My 9 year old daughter is deathly allergic to pine nuts. Not peanuts, which are a ground nut. Her allergist says there's a 50% chance she will be deathly allergic to another kind of tree nuts. So she avoids all foods with nuts, I carry an Epipen in my handbag, there's another at home, and one at her school.

Another child at her school is deathly allergic to peanuts, so her whole school is a "peanut-free zone."

A friend of mine also has a peanut allergy. If food is cooked with peanut oil, and her food is cooked on the same pan or grill afterwards, she can go into anaphylactic shock.

My sister is seriously allergic to milk and other dairy products. Not just lactose intolerant, but allergic to milk protein (casein). She needs to read the fine print in labels, because sodium caseinate shows up as an unexpected ingredient in foods as disparate as canned tuna and salad dressings. (Never thought there was milk in tuna, did you?)

Yeah, I suppose some people use "allergy" as an excuse to avoid foods they just don't like, but why take a chance? The only picky eater I'm trying to convert is my daughter, to get her to eat more vegetables. If they're grown up and their food likes and dislikes are set, it's no skin off my nose if they don't want to try something new.


SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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I don't have time to reply in full right now, as I'm bolting out the door to pick up my husband...I will try to write more this evening though.

I've been diagnosed in the past few years with several allergies, some of which are items that have been mentioned above. This has been a great learning experience for me.

The first thing I said when I was being tested by the allergist was "garlic? you mean people are really allergic to garlic? Please don't let me be!"

Well guess what? That was the largest "bump" on my arm! :angry: I do know some people find their reactions are different whether the item is in raw form, cooked, or powdered. (I have experienced this as well. I used to be able to tolerate onions, which are also of the lily family, but now I can only eat cooked ones sparingly. Eaten raw I will get itchy hives and stomach issues.)

Two things I want to talk about when I sign on later--the fact that there are food sensitivities as well as food allergies. And that one can never predict what type of reaction one may have to a food if allergic. It may be a swollen stomach one day, and an anyphylactic shock the next.

I know how much I was unaware when I was diagnosed initially, and just from the responses I've seen so far, many people need to be educated about this issue. Gotta Run....

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But if anybody told me they were allergic to peas I'd kick them out of my house. There's nothing in peas to be allergic to.  :laugh:

My older son used to be allergic to peas. He was allergic to soy at the time, and a corresponding allergy to peas is quite common. Got a red rash quickly after eating even a little bit, so it was a very obvious physical reaction.

My sister is allergic to mollusks (oysters, mussels, clam, squid, octopus). She can have shrimp, fish, and other seafood with no problem at all, but has an anaphylactic reaction if there is even a bit of clam or oyster in a dish. She has had two different occasions when someone didn't take her seriously, and ended up in the hospital as a result.

I know there are people who invent "allergies" to avoid foods they don't like, but it's certainly wiser to assume they are serious than the alternative.


Kathy

Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all. - Harriet Van Horne

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I've disliked food enough that's it's made me feel ill -- maybe that's what happened to some people who have allergies that don't quite make sense. (I felt this way about corn on the cob when I was a child.)

I once read somewhere that the average person must eat an unfamiliar food five to ten times before they really like it becaue of the unfamilar taste and texture. I believe that, too. It took me a while before I really liked foods that I didn't have when I was little, like asparagus, tofu, and artichokes. When I fell in love with swiss chard the first time I had it, I could hardly believe it! The trouble is, so many children eat such a limited diet (unless they have parents like the ones on here!), and many people aren't willing to keep trying new foods enough times to get acclimated.


Rebecca Hassell

Cookin' in Brookland

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the best one Ive heard is "I ate oatmeal every day I was pregnant and heard this song on the radio every morning and got morning sickness, so if I hear that song or see oatmeal i get sick right there"

If you ate something and then puked every day for months, would you really want to eat it again?

During my first pregnancy I became unable to eat large amounts of garlic, or garlic that isn't cooked for a long time without suffering "effects". I am not interested in having someone prepare a meal with large amounts of garlic just to test me.


Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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I once read somewhere that the average person must eat an unfamiliar food five to ten times before they really like it becaue of the unfamilar taste and texture. I believe that, too.

I dunno... just how many times did you have to eat chocolate? Ice cream? Cake? Chocolate Chip Cookies?

Sorry--- I think that it's most important that you try it. I've tried UNI at least 30 times. :blink: I still don't like it. But that's my perogative, isn't it?

HVR


"Cogito Ergo Dim Sum; Therefore I think these are Pork Buns"

hvrobinson@sbcglobal.net

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My niece is staying with us this year while she attends university and if I have heard "I don't like that" once I've heard it a thousand times these past six months.  Our only rule is that she try everything that is prepared at least once, and then if she really doesn't like it she doesn't have to eat it.  Well for someone who doesn't like green beans, beets, potatoes, squash, greens, beef, pork and and lamb, she has sure been packing it away and going for seconds.  Her mother is really pissed because she still won't eat these items when she goes home.

I was that way, but the reason was that my mother was a really, really bad cook. I thought the food in my university's cafeteria was pretty good. It wasn't until I started dating a farm girl that I discovered how good food could really be. Among other things, she taught me that fish could be something than fish-sticks, that spinach could be eaten raw, and didn't have to come from a can. After 18 years of gray meat and gray vegetables, it was a revelation.

Jim

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Jim, I hear you. I went to university and discovered that there were hundreds of foods out there that I had never tasted. I loved cafeteria food :laugh:. Who knew there were peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, lamb, fish? We only ever ate corn, peas, beans and carrots that were boiled within an inch of their lives, and I lived on a farm. I couldn't wait to try all of these new foods. My niece is the polar opposite, she's afraid to try anything new because she might not like it.


Dawn aka shrek

Let the eating begin!

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But if anybody told me they were allergic to peas I'd kick them out of my house. There's nothing in peas to be allergic to.  :laugh:

Not exactly true. Some are allergic to different chemicals within the peanut, which are also present in peas themselves. I know there are unrelated botanically, but there are at least similar substances in both. It can be enough to cause a reaction.

In my experience, I wore latex gloves at work every day for several years. I ended up with a reaction to them after that time. The sensitivity built up over the course of time, and though it wasn't throat-closing, get a clear airway started, I did develop hives. Since I got out of the medical biz, I can wear them on occasion now, but I have had reactions since, once while having an IV started.

It's nothing to fool around with, folks. Even if they are just a picky eater, you still want them to enjoy your food, right?

Edited cos I cant tipe

This is pretty common in the medical profession, isn't it? Developing an allergy to latex? I feel like I read that somewhere once...


"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

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Megan you can develop allergies to all kinds of things.

Not as bad as my seafood allergy, but when I turned eighteen I noticed that I had to be careful how much acidic food I took in, or I'd get horrible cold sores. Tomatos were the worst, not that I can't eat them, just not in any large amount.


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Wow, I had no idea there were so many other people who have more or less the same reaction to bell peppers that I do! I always ask if there are bell peppers in dishes, and as long as there is stuff to eat without bell peppers in it, I'll be fine.

I have a real problem with "fooled you" cooking. Allergies like mine won't kill me (although if you're around me shortly after I partake I'm going to wish it had, and so are you), but who knows if those of others will. I don't have any respect for those who turn dislikes into allergies, but it's not my position to make that determination or shake them out of their food ruts. If they just want to be left alone with their limited food likes, then I think they should be.

I just don't invite picky eaters to dinner very much.

Marcia.


Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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Megan you can develop allergies to all kinds of things.

Not as bad as my seafood allergy, but when I turned eighteen I noticed that I had to be careful how much acidic food I took in, or I'd get horrible cold sores. Tomatos were the worst, not that I can't eat them, just not in any large amount.

Oh, yeah, of course! I know plenty of people who've developed allergies over time. I just remember hearing that this was very common amongst medical professionals, far more common than developing, say, food allergies. Anyhoo, I suppose it's OT.


"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

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I could never figure out why I loved the taste of a blue cheese sauce, but could not eat blue cheese. 

Hmmm. Maybe I'm not allergic to penicillin after all! I'm supposed to be, but inhale as much blue cheese as I can with no ill effect.

No tricks, no lies. I won't sneak if you won't tell me you're allergic to organ meat when you simply don't like it. Hey, I hate peanut butter, but I'm not allergic to it.

And, perhaps coincidentally, my best friends eat everything.


Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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Megan, it may be Ot but I agree with you.

my husband is a nurse and he gets hand sores from latax and washing his hands all the time in the winter months.Something he never had until he started working.


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I'm allergic to scallops, though not to the rest of the shellfish family that I know of so far - there can be crossover allergies amongst shellfish, so every time I try a new breed, I pray to god that I won't get hit with the horror of an allergic reaction.

It isn't pretty. It hasn't killed me yet, but it isn't something I'd wish on my worst enemy. I've been hit with the reaction on a couple of occasions after eating in seafood restaurants when I've specifically ordered dishes without scallops - either what I ate was cooked in the same medium as a scallop, or the waiter or chef didn't take me seriously. And once I ended up in the hospital in the middle of the night after eating Chinese hot & sour soup. Don't know what the hell was in that, but there I went.

As far as I understand it, those of us who are allergic to shellfish (or nuts) lack the enzymes that are needed to break down those specific amino acids within one's system. Nut allergies are truly severe - they can kill someone in minutes. I would take anyone who says they have a shellfish or nut allergy very seriously. Hives, uncontrolled vomiting & blocked airways may follow one bite of the offending food.

There are those who claim they are allergic when they are merely averse to a foodstuff. I'm averse to raw tomatoes, and avoid them at all costs. It's a true, full-bore, inexplicable aversion - my body totally skeeves when I taste one - but it ain't an allergy. I could, if politeness truly called for it, gag one down (with difficulty) and not suffer any consequences.

Yet I could taste the sweet, delectable flesh of a scallop, savor it momentarily, and then suffer a major medical crisis. Go figure.

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The "there, I've fooled you" concept I find troubling.  I once had a girlfriend who was allergic to onions.  We would go out to dinner and she would GRILL the waiter without mercy about the menu, and what could be made sans bulb.  She would get very strident about it (to the point where I'd be embarrased and want to crawl under the table), but the few times where the chef/waiter would do a "there, I've fooled you" her throat would close and she'd go into convulsions.  I got fairly good with the epipen in the arse, but it always was frightening to me, painful and humiliating to her and caused a scene every time.

i've got a friend with an allium allergy, and it's brutal--EVERYTHING in restaurants has onions or garlic or shallots or leeks or scallions or chives or whatever in it. somehow he's survived to be about 50 so far, but it's basically eliminated his ability to eat in most restaurants. we were out one time at a local bar, and he ordered a plain steak and nearly keeled over--apparently they grilled onions on the grill pretty regularly.

on the bright side, he's really rich and likes to go out, so we go places and he buys us dinner and fabulous bottles of wine... and then goes to diners by himself to eat pancakes and french fries on his way home.

i always read these threads and never know how to react. on the one hand, like many of you i don't eat for fuel, but for enjoyment, and i wish everyone had that kind of appreciation for things. but on the other hand, you can't make them, and really shouldn't. what's the difference? it's their life. one of my coworkers is a strict meat-and-potatoes type, no green veg, etc. and today she wouldn't even take a bite of another coworker's shepherd's pie. i mean, it's ground beef and potatoes! but no.

here's another data point: a relative of mine used to eat everything, but she's gotten sick as she's gotten older and now she has food intolerances--not intolerances in that she chooses not to tolerate things, but that her body basically rejects them and they give her horrible gastric distress. and garlic is one of the major things that sets them off.

she's had loads of tests, even to the point of spending an ungodly amount of money to go to the mayo clinic and having a complete workup, and they just can't figure out what's wrong with her. it's really frustrating and has taken a lot of the enjoyment out of eating for her, and going out to eat was one of her major joys in life. these intolerances won't kill her (yet) but it's much easier to just tell people she's allergic to garlic than to try to explain the whole thing.

on the other hand, she used to be allergic to shrimp (her face would break out and she'd get wheezy), but that kind of went away over the last 15 years or so--and she's in her mid-60s now. she always liked them, and loves to be able to eat them now.

so, the point of all this rambling is that there has to be a happy medium somewhere. people have a million reasons for not liking things, or for requesting meals without them. and really the question is: is being with the person worth dealing with the eating issues? if not, don't invite them over for meals or go out with them. if so, work around it.

because these issues don't go away--everybody's gotta eat to live.

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My allergy is so bad, it's listed in my medical records.

The strangest part is I can eat ocean fish, any fish, but not fresh water. my dr. is perplexed by this.

At one time I went to eat out at a pub that had a mussel boil the night before and I could not stay. The smell got to me.


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Hmmm. Maybe I'm not allergic to penicillin after all! I'm supposed to be, but I inhale as much blue cheese as I can with no ill effect.

No tricks, no lies. I won't sneak if you won't tell me you're allergic to organ meat when you simply don't like it. Hey, I hate peanut butter, but I'm not allergic to it and I don't pretend to be.


Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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I could never figure out why I loved the taste of a blue cheese sauce, but could not eat blue cheese. 

Hmmm. Maybe I'm not allergic to penicillin after all! I'm supposed to be, but inhale as much blue cheese as I can with no ill effect.

No tricks, no lies. I won't sneak if you won't tell me you're allergic to organ meat when you simply don't like it. Hey, I hate peanut butter, but I'm not allergic to it.

And, perhaps coincidentally, my best friends eat everything.

Maggie, don't bet on it. I can't eat bleu cheese by itself. It causes a huge reaction. I can eat a bleu cheese dressing though for example. although it causes me discomfort. but it's not fatal as penicillin is. And because I have fatal food allergies, I don't play around. I'll be happy to tell you that I just don't like something. When I tell you I'm allergic, then that's what I am.


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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