A few weeks ago I mentioned that my daughter had been diagnosed with a peanut allergy and that my cooking would have to change, well little did I realize at the time that it would effect so many aspects of our daily lives. For those who don't know anyone with a food allergy I must mention this is not like seasonal allergies where you get puffy itchy eyes, itchy throat, sneezing, and a runny nose. Food allergies can range from a rash to a full blown anaphlaxis reaction, which can be followed by death. The scary part about food allergies, peanuts in particular, is the person doesn't have to come into contact with the allergen, some people are so allergic that a reaction can be initiated by simply being breathed on by another person who ate a peanut product. This is why so many places, like schools, have taken such a proactive stance and banned all peanut products or even banning lunches from home. While this seems unfair and over reacting, a feeling even I'm guilty of, it's extremely comforting knowing my child will be safe.
Now my wife has spent ours on the internet researching any product that may contain peanuts. So far she has found products from Kraft, Burt's Bees Wax, various bread product's, premixed Pancake batter, most candy bars, and the list goes on. Then there's the places we can not take our daughter due to either preparing food on general equipment with peanut products or having peanuts on the premises; Baseball stadiums, Olive Garden, Texas Road House, and Pizza Hut to list a few. As you can see the impact this has on our daily life as well as the rest of our family, all who have been very accommodating, is quite intrusive.
I must extend a huge thank you to my wife for all the research she has and is doing. Her attention to detail and tendency to be a worry wort, though rightly placed, is doing so much to keep our daughter safe. As Sam grows up we will be teaching her how to live with this food allergy while still getting to enjoy life, and Jennie's research will play a huge roll in doing that.