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Friday, December 28, 2012


CNN just published an article about food allergic kids being the brunt of bullies.
In one of my back to school posts I mention this disturbing problem and some ideas about combating it.
Check it out here

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Eggless Nog Recipe

Love Eggnog but can't have eggs or milk?
Try this non-alcoholic, eggfree, dairy free version.

Eggless Nog
4 cups of creamy alternative milk (soymilk, non-dairy creamer, rice milk)
1 package french vanilla pudding mix
pinch of nutmeg
1 t vanilla extract
2t rum extract

Combine in blender till smooth.
Makes 8 delicious servings. Drink slowly and savor this creamy treat.
Can be served hot or cold.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Lentil Soup Recipe

What could be more satisfying on a dreary winter night than a hot bowl of soup?
Lentils are wholesome, economical, vitamin packed, and very satisfying.
Caution: lentils are legumes. Cross reactivity to chickpeas and peas is possible.
Peanuts are legumes as well but cross reactivity with lentils is not as common.
This recipe is super easy. Just throw all ingredients in the crockpot (slowcooker) and go about your day.

Crockpot Lentil Soup
1 16oz bag of dried lentils (rinsed)
1 onion(diced) and sauteed in olive oil
3 stalks celery (diced)
2 quarts water (or vegetable broth)
*cumin, curry, tumeric, paprika,black pepper, parsley flakes
*salt, pepper (season to taste)

Add all ingredients in to crockpot and cook for atleast 6 hrs (3 hrs on high and 3 hrs on low)
This soup just gets better the longer you cook it.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Food Allergy Organizational Merger

Two leading food allergy organizations, The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) and  the Food Allergy Initiative (FAI), have merged. The new organization will be called FARE. This merger is more than "fair", it's fantastic.With over 15 million Americans diagnosed with food allergies, the announcement couldn't come at a better time. The merger represents greater efforts being made towards research, education, and awareness in food allergies.  
"Building on the significant accomplishments of FAAN and FAI over the past two decades, FARE will fund world-class research that advances treatment and understanding, provide evidence-based education and resources, undertake advocacy at all levels of government, and work to increase awareness of food allergies as a serious public health issue." (
FARE will debut its new logo and website in early 2013. Check it out on

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Corn Allergy

While not one of the "big 8" allergens corn allergies can be quite challenging. Navigating the grocery store with corn allergies is quite difficult because of it's ubiquitous nature. It seems that corn is everywhere  (corn syrup, starch, oil, fillers). For those with severe corn allergy many paper goods are off limits as well because they're dusted with corn starch. I've listed some valuable resources below for our readers with corn allergy:
Kosher Food Allergies Tip: PASSOVER- corn allergic gold mine
Passover products offer a great reprieve for corn allergy sufferers. Since corn is avoided during Passover by *most Jews,products that are marked kosher for Passover are a gold mine. When Passover products hit the shelves in March, stock up!!!!
*Sephardic Jews do not avoid corn so don't assume all kosher for passover products are corn free.


Monday, December 17, 2012

Food Allergy App?

Left: The iTube platform, which utilizes colorimetric assays and a smart phone-based digital reader. Right: A screen capture of the iTube App.
These days there's an app for everything, but an app for food allergies?
It may be closer than you think thanks to researchers at the UCLA School of Engineering and Applied Science. They've  developed a cell phone attachment called the iTube which detects allergens in food samples. The device uses the cell phone's camera feature as well as a smart phone app and boast the same level of sensitivity as laboratory testing, While technology will never take the place of being vigilant, it could be another vital resource in food allergy management.

UCLA Newsroom   

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Treatment of Adult Anaphylaxis Deficient

According to a recent survey* many primary care and emergency physicians aren't treating anaphylaxis appropriately and aren't taking the necessary preventative measures.  Physician interviews revealed that many doctors don't always provide epinephrine to patients they believe are anaphylactic, often fail to refer these patients for follow-up, and believe erroneously that some of these patients shouldn't receive epi pens. Additional disturbing findings of this survey include that physicians rarely reported ordering or referring patients for diagnostic tests aimed at identifying the reaction's cause, they almost never demonstrated use of an auto-injector, and seldom explained that auto-injectors have an expiration date. Furthermore, many physicians of all types -- even the allergists -- mistakenly believed that some patients should never receive epinephrine.
The national guidelines state explicitly that there are no absolute contraindications to epinephrine. What can be done to reverse this state of affairs? 
source: article in  
*based on these studies:
Primary source: American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology
Source reference:
Wood R, et al "Anaphylaxis in America: Results from a national physician survey" ACAAI 2012.
Additional source: American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology
Source reference:
Chouksey A, et al "Management of anaphylaxis: are we compliant with the guidelines?" ACAAI 2012.
Thank You to a reader with severe food allergies in Atlanta, GA for bringing this disturbing study to my attention

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Pareve Latke Toppings

Dairy foods are frequently served on Chanukah as a reminder of the bravery of Yehudis.
A dollop of sour cream is out of the question if you're allergic to milk.
Tofutti makes a nice non-dairy sour cream (soy-based).
Some non-dairy yogurts and sour creams are nut-based so watch out if you're nut allergic.
Here are some cool, smooth, and savory options to top off those crispy latkes.
Non-dairy Latke Toppings:
Tofutti sour cream  (garnish with parsley or dill for added flavor)
Leek and Mushroom Sauce
Salsa (home-made or out of the jar)
Hot Pepper Jelly- Levana Kirschenbaum

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Delightful Chanukah Fare

Chanukah may be the festival of light but there's nothin' light about all of that oil.
In previous posts I gave you lots of options for traditional fried fare.
Now onto something a bit "lighter".

Tips for a De"light"ful  chanukah:
1- bake those latkes and donuts instead of frying them
to save on many whopping calories as well as cholesterol
2- serve lots of salads either alternatively or additionally to the
heavier entrees. Your guests and family will thank you
3- Check your menu to see how many  diet "offenders" you
have and slash the ones you don't love
4- Serve fat free or light sour cream instead of full fat sour cream or chobani plain yogurt
5- Use unsweetened applesauce

Monday, December 3, 2012

Safe Chocolate Chips

Are you having a hard time finding nut-free,dairy free chocolate chips?
Look no more, Mega chunks from Enjoy life are here and boy do they fit the bill.
Supersized, semi-sweet chocolate chunks are great out of the bag or in any recipe that calls for chocolate chips.
The folks at Enjoy Life take food allergies seriously. All of their products are made in a dedicated
facility (that omits the big 8 allergens as well as others).
Not only do Megachunks taste great they're great for people with allergies and sensitivities. 
Enjoy Life Megachunks are: 

  • dairy free
  • gluten free
  • peanut free
  • tree nut free, 
  • soy free
  • eggfree

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Nutfree Chocolate Gelt

Great News!
Paskesz has a line of nutfree chocolate gelt made in nutfree facilities.
Available in mesh bags or loose gelt in tubs (pareve or dairy)
As always, check ingredient statements for allergens
Kosherfoodallergies cannot assume any responsibility
for any adverse effects from eating these products
Nut-Free Milk Multicolor Coins Kosher Chalav Yisroel70 Milk Chocolate Nut-Free Chanukah Coins in Tub KosherParve Nut-Free Chocolate Coins Silver Color (Dairy-Free)