Monday, January 25, 2010

food for thought.


i feel like i have done something terribly wrong. e has been suffering from terrible hives for the last six weeks. at first notice i thought it was spider bites. she had been working in the garden at school. seemed logical. but they didn't go away. they got worse. the pediatrician thought it was a virus. then she began to run a temperature and got a head-cold and that made sense. but the cold went away while the hives didn't. so we visited the doctor again and got a referral to an allergist. which we had to wait for before we could make an appointment. (in the meantime she was having daily doses of antihistamine and colloidal oatmeal baths.) she has to be antihistamine-free for ten days prior to her allergy consult. she was so uncomfortable i started grasping at straws. citrus. gone. no change. wheat. gone. ah-ha moment.

so we have lived the last week gluten-free. and noticed a great improvement - though not complete clearing.

and i have done a lot of reading. on food allergies. and what causes them. and the frightening rate of increase in them. links to too much consumption of the food in question. too much wheat, it seems, in our case. i never would have thought. yes we have pasta weekly. (whole wheat. and often left-overs in the lunchbox.) yes we bake bread. (and eat too much of it on occasion.) i am careful about the processed foods we bring into the house. i try to make as much as i can on my own. i have read all the books and thought i was doing a pretty good job.

this has all sent me into a twirl about what we eat. about what processed food is. (flour is processed...) about the endless gluten-free choices in the shops that seem to me perhaps just another set of processed foods to cause more problems down the road. about the idea of a rotation diet. (this makes so much sense.)


it could be something else. in any case i will be thinking a bit differently about what we eat - and working harder to do more ourselves.

we visit the allergist tomorrow. will let you know.


rebecca said...

oh poo! i mean, i hope it's not wheat, but we could all probably benefit from less gluten. you know jeff's thing was soy, and once he stopped eating it a ton of problems cleared up. so, i hope it won't take long to find the culprit for e's troubles... and in the meantime i hope you find some new yummy things to eat in lieu of the glute.

p.s. jeff's doc did a blood allergy panel and it came up with a list of serious to minor sensitivities. it's been really helpful to know he should avoid green beans and cottage cheese too. :)

Kyrie said...

I am an avid reader of your blog, but a rare commenter...I just wanted to let you know, as a mama of a pack of celiacs, I'm happy to help/answer questions if you have a need!

BunkleLife said...

Gah! So sorry to hear, poor E. Look forward to hearing what the allergist says. The rise in allergies is really disturbing. I can't recall knowing any kid with peanut allergies when I was young...and now...?


I have gluten free pals so have lots of suggestions in that arena if that is what it turns out to be.


rebecca said...

it's true! kyrie'd be a great resource - above and beyond gluten-free. plus, she's one of my corvallis blog buddies :)

amy h said...

I'm curious to see what the allergist says. Can they do blood tests for allergies without all that skinprick stuff? I've been wondering about this with my E, but am loath to take away all her gluten (she's sooo picky and heavily dependent on bread/cereal).

Tracy said...

thanks all! kyrie i will be in touch!
amy - i would prefer to email you... but not sure how. (didn't find a link on yr blog.) if you like pls email me!

rach said...

sorry to hear! i just bought this cookbook:
written by this mother:
the almond cake is to die for.
my sister swears by her recipes for wheat free, sugar free, etc etc.
i hope you can figure things out. best of luck!

emily said...

hope things went well on tuesday. when i was a child, i had similar sounding outbreaks of hives. not sure how much food elimination my mother did, but in the end the doctor (how, i wonder!?) pinpointed red food coloring, which seemed to solve the problem.

and as for processed foods. i was talking with a friend about the subject today. about how even when we think we don't eat much processed food (i think we eat a lot less than many, but hardly none), we have to remember that pasta is processed and - as you said - flour is processed and even oatmeal is processed. does shed light on the issue - but likely raises more questions than provides answers.

hoping this sorts itself out swiftly. xo.

house on hill road said...

i hope the doctor's appointment went well and that you have a better answer. and that e finds some relief!