~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Kids~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Food, glorious food! Part 2

I researched allergy testing and won't bore you with all those details. Basically no one can agree on which type of test is best. I was also thinking it might be more GI related so we wanted to get the kids tested for gluten intolerance/celiac as well.  To do this test they needed to be eating grains.

It was a done deal. Of course, me being the all-or-nothing personality type that I am, I didn't play it smart and add in one food at a time. Noooo not me!  If we were off diet then we were OFF DIET.  The kids ate at Kentucky Fried Chicken, Little Ceasar's Pizza, Long John Silver's and several other places they had never been to before.

Something I learned from this experience is that we are definitely doing the right thing by steering clear of these offending foods. Our house was crazy!  Behavioral problems were sky high. Reading abilities were dramatically affected. Sleep problems were becoming a nightly issue when they had been almost non-existent before. After quite a while of eating this way we finally reigned it in and went back to the basic Feingold protocol which eliminates the artificial colors/flavors and preservatives. Things weren't great but they were tolerable.

The kids' appointments were staggered so I took Silas and Sadie in first. We had already eliminated eggs and peanuts from Sadie's diet since we suspected allergies to those two items. Their blood was drawn and sent to the lab.

When I got the results I was devastated.  Thankfully they weren't with me and didn't witness their sobbing mother the entire drive home. Then Ellie, Avrie and Evelyn had theirs done as well. The results weren't much better. I was so confused. It said that they were allergic to several foods they had been eating with no problems. Or were there problems?  Maybe that was the underlying issue. Maybe if I took these foods out of their diet their gut would heal and they could eat more and feel better. Was this really the way?  Everyone's bloodwork also came back positive for gluten intolerance. Well, everyone except Silas but that's a complicated story of mishandled bloodwork and a retest after he was off grains for a while. His numbers *off* grains were still close to  positive.  Plus he shows such a good response to a gluten free diet that I think he's probably gluten intolerant as well. I'm not about to subject him to another blood draw to find out.

I was so overwhelmed with the various allergies and sensitivities listed that I made a spreadsheet. I thought that would help me see what they *could* eat.  You can take a peek at the Allergy Chart if you would like.

I made a plan and worked with a friend with allergies in her family. Made a trip to Trader Joe's and Whole Foods an hour away and we were set. Then I started really questioning this. Per the specialist anything that was an allergy we were supposed to avoid for.ev.er. Was that truly accurate?  One thing that really had me second guessing was that Sadie only showed up as sensitive to peanuts when I was pretty certain she had a full blown allergy. This specialist never once suggested an epi-pen. Red flags were waving high.

So I researched some more and decided to do skin prick testing. Took the kids to the head pediatric allergist at the children's hospital in our state capitol. He scoffed at some of my findings which was hard to take. I have avoided mainstream doctors for several years for this reason. They weren't there when my children were screaming in fear and acting so irrational that they could hurt themselves or others when they had preservatives or food coloring. It's very, very real.

Have a blessed day! ~Tammy

Read Part 1 here.
Read Part 3 here.

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