Sunday, November 8, 2009

A Few Updates.....

I wanted to give a quick update on our trip to Duke last week.  It was our 12th visit and completely uneventful.  We drove a little over 2 hours there, got an increase in dosage (2 drops up from 1 of the highest concentrate), waited for the required 1 1/2 hours while they monitored Abigail for a reaction (she did have a little more severe tingling in her ears and throat) and then we drove the 2 plus hours home with a stop to visit my dad and sister and then again farther down the road for a little shopping and dinner.  We are down to just 2 more visits before we hit the maintenance dose.  Then we'll go every 8 weeks instead of every 2.  That's pretty exciting for us.

We had a safe and fun Halloween.  Hope everyone else did as well.  It's great to have neighbors who understand Abigail's allergy.  Many of them have safe candy set aside just for her.  As seen in the picture, this year her pile of safe candy was much bigger than the unsafe candy.  We packaged up the smaller pile along with her excess safe candy and added it to a collection going to the Charlotte USO who will send it with deploying troops to Afghanistan.  Thinking positively, I'm hoping in a year or two, we'll no longer need to sort candy.  I'm hoping Abigail will be able to eat whatever she receives.  Selfishly, it means the rest of us can also eat those forbidden candy bars.  I snagged a few Kit Kat's after she went to bed, but packed up the Reese's Cups and other peanut base candy bars.  The risk outweighs any enjoyment I might have by eating one.

Speaking of food that we can't eat, it seems that so much of the healthy, organic food I would like to purchase for our family is manufactured in plants that also process tree nuts/peanuts.  I was very disappointed during my last trip across town to Trader Joe's.  It's one of our favorite stores, and for the last year, a place where I did a great deal of our grocery shopping.  For a while now, our family has been eating foods without high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated soybean oils, trans fat, artificial sweeteners, and of course, all nuts.  We drink organic milk and purchase organic meats.  I'm also trying to remove foods from our grocery list that contain artificial dyes. Trader Joe's had a lot of products at a really good price that met all of our restrictions.  I say "had" because the last time I went, a good many of the products that I buy were labeled "manufactured in a plant that processes tree nuts/peanuts."  While I can commend Trader Joe's for their great labeling practices, I was disappointed that there were yet more unsafe, healthy products that I could not purchase.  I asked the manager about all of the new labels, and he told me that they had recently changed distribution centers.  The new one was closer and while stocking the same Trader Joe branded products, they used different manufacturers to produce those products.  Unfortunately for us, those manufacturers also produced more products with tree nuts/peanuts in the same facility.  An important lesson here is that you should always read the label even if it's a product that you've purchased for years.  But, back to thinking positively, after the Duke clinical trial we might be able to eliminate "may contain" or "processed in a plant with tree nuts/peanuts" from the long list of food ingredients that our family chooses not to consume.  A very long list of organic products would then be on my "safe to purchase" list.

In the coming posts, I want to finish discussing IgE numbers and also discuss a great book I'm reading.  It's called "The Unhealthy Truth" and is written by Robyn O'Brien.  She discusses how our food is making us sick from food allergies to ADHD to cancer.  She brings up a whole new topic for me which is resulting in yet another food that I want to eliminate from our diet, food that has been genetically modified.  I was repulsed to read about the effects of rBGH on our dairy products and disheartened to read about the lack of regulation on genetically engineered crops of soy and corn, to name just a few.  I've added a few links over in the margin if you want to start doing your own research.  I'd add a word of caution though, it'll change the way you think about your food.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I could have held that "unsafe" candy for you and forwarded what was left to a deploying Pop Pop. Nice visit.