Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Strict Avoidance

Yesterday while my husband was busy on back-to-back conference calls, J (my 17 yr old son) and Kingston (my youngest that just turned 4 mths old today) trotted off to an allergist. In my 38 years of living, I've never been to an allergist. As of late, Kingston had developed a few symptoms that concerned me, because they weren't the norm for him. He had spells of inconsolable crying, excessive gas, a rash that presented itself like eczema, off and on congestion and irritability. I basically applied pure refined shea butter to his entire body after a bath and we did what we needed to do to keep him as happy as possible. We thought that teething might have been the culprit responsible for his irritability. Low and behold, we get to the allergist, and the Dr. suggests "skin patch testing" ( Kingston was a real trooper with the testing. He didn't even whimper. After waiting about 20 minutes for the results, we found out that he tested positive for an allergic reaction to egg and soybean. More than likely, this has been why he has been acting the way that he has lately. Because he's an exclusively breast-fed baby, when I eat these things, he has an allergic reaction to them. The Dr. told me that these 2 allergies can be outgrown, and those are my hopes, but allergies to food can also be very serious and even life threatening. With the high amount of allergies, food sensitivities and asthma in today's society, I would highly recommend everyone be tested for allergies. They are very common and there are quite a few, such as pet dander, dust mites, gluten, peanuts, soy, seasonal, dairy, casein, etc. Alot of autistic children are on restricted diets, as their choices in food seem to help or hinder their condition. I thank God that I was steadfast in trying to figure out what was causing my son to be so uncomfortable. Often times it is a long and frustrating path to the correct diagnosis when there are issues. Now, both my husband and I will be tested for allergies, as well as the rest of my children. When parents have allergic reactions to things, it increases the offsprings' chances of having allergic reactions.

While we live in a world of instant gratification, a microwave society, I am going to have to take a slowcooker approach before I choose my foods, and prepare them. I now have to be conscious of Kingstons' needs, instead of my desires. I have to abstain, avoid, decline, forgo, skip and steer clear of eggs and soy. In doing this, I will make smarter food choices and provide a better source of nourishment for my baby. Am I willing to scour every aisle in Whole Foods, or specialty stores searching for egg-free and soy-free items? Will I be vigilant in reading ingredient labels? Are we willing to pay the exorbitant prices for special foods and chemical-free living? Am I willing to spend a little more time preparing foods at home, instead of that occassional fast food trip? As much as I like to dine out, am I willing to give it up? Will I practice "strict avoidance"?The answer to all of the above questions is "ABSOLUTELY!!!!!" It is one of the many sacrifices that a mother makes. It is a lifestyle change and I will learn to adjust and be resourceful. We will adjust our lives to meet the parameters of a healthier lifestyle.

I highly suggest "skin patch testing", as it can provide inside information to mysterious questions regarding health situations. I also encourage people to educate themselves and be compassionate to others with allergies, or any other characteristic that sets us makes a huge difference.

Below are great resources:

Health & Happiness

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