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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 10:07 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Toronto
Hi All,

New to the board, so thought I'd say a quick "hello" and share my allergy listing. I'm wondering if there is anybody else with my list of allergies who might be up for trading some tips.

Medic Alert lists my allergies as "allergy to vegetable gums, latex -erythromycin and some foods". Yep, they couldn't fit the listing in.

What it translates to:
- vegetable gums (guar gum, xanthan gum, gum Arabic, acacia gum, tragacanth gum, cellulose gum, and anything else with the word gum, plus alginates and carrageenan :frightened). Reaction is swelling tongue, assumed anaphylactic by the allergist, potentially oral allergy syndrome
- banana (reaction is wheezing and breathing problems. Allergist wouldn't even test in hospital setting, but assumed anaphylactic level). React to smell as well.
- kiwi and pineapple (reaction is severely sore mouth and tongue, potentially oral allergy syndrome)
- latex
- recently started reacting to papaya and have been told to avoid all tropical fruits because of the risk of cross-reacting

Oh yeah.....and eggs, almost forgot that one.

The fruits, eggs, and latex are pretty easy to deal with, because when I say "egg" or "banana" they get an image in their heads of what that is. When I say "vegetable gum allergy" to medical doctors the reaction is often "you can't eat vegetables!!??" Umm, no, I can have veggies and eat them quite often (sometimes its the only "safe" option. Don't even ask about regular folks reactions to it.

I found the easiest solution to cooking (especially baking) with an egg allergy...start with a vegan recipe and add meat and dairy as tolerated.

The egg allergy was confirmed at 17 years, but the fruit and gums didn't hit until adulthood (gums were the latest, at age 28).

Whew! Long-winded first post.

Oh...one last thing. I've been fortunate to have avoided all issues with tongue swelling in the last four years. The last one was just after getting back from my honeymoon, eating a sandwich made by hubby using food bought by mom. :oops I did tell him he's supposed to wait until after the beneficiary info was changed to "off me". He didn't find it funny. :dungetit Rather ironic we made it through all that eating out on the honeymoon only to react to a homemade sandwich.

Soooo...any other vegetable gum allergic folks?

_________________
Allergy to vegetable gums (guar gum, xanthan gum, gum arabic, acacia gum, cellulose gum, anything else with the word gum, alginates and carrageenan), eggs, bananas, kiwi, pineapple (avoiding all tropicals) & latex, + environmental allergies, cats, etc


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 10:19 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 10:07 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Toronto
Should probably mention that yes, I carry two epi-pens at all times, plus liquid Benadryl. The dilemma...both are contra-indicated with meds I'm on for my fibromyalgia. :roll: Doctors and pharmacists decided to go forward with the prescription since it is used in the case of emergency and without it, I could very likely die of anaphylaxis, whereas using them might lead to bigger problems. :banghead Still would not hesitate to use both immediately if my tongue starts to swell.

_________________
Allergy to vegetable gums (guar gum, xanthan gum, gum arabic, acacia gum, cellulose gum, anything else with the word gum, alginates and carrageenan), eggs, bananas, kiwi, pineapple (avoiding all tropicals) & latex, + environmental allergies, cats, etc


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:55 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6490
Location: Ottawa
YEs, people would be surprised by the vegetable gum allergy. I'm pretty sure that most people don't read the labels and don't know about vegetable gums.
My advice would be to say "vegetable gums such as guar gum". I don't say legumes, I say peas, beans and lentils because when I say legumes, I get the response, "That's French for vegetables" :roll: Um, yes, it is but it is also a botanical family.

It's difficult if the meds are contraindicated but yes, surviving an anaphylaxis reaction and having some fall out due to the medication combination is better than not surviving an anaphylaxis reaction. Abolutely go to the hospital for the observation period.

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Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 10:24 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2948
Location: Toronto
Welcome and, oh boy, you've got yourself some tough triggers there. I see what you mean about the veg. gums. I find it hard enough to get people to understand that my soy allergy is anaphylaxis.

You're probably aware, but the latex, banana and kiwi allergies are inter-related. We wrote on kiwi specifically here: http://allergicliving.com/index.php/201 ... ergy-kiwi/

Question: most people find latex allergy difficult - rubber turns up all over the place. How do you manage that effectively?

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Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 6:20 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 10:07 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Toronto
Ahh yes, avoiding latex can be a big challenge, especially when just learning all the products that have latex in them. I'm ok with a little bit of contact with latex (last I learned, anyway, but we know that can change rapidly), but I make every effort to avoid it when I can, to make up for those accidental exposures.

I've learned that hair elastics work well for me when I really need to use an elastic for something since the fabric covering keeps the elastic away from my skin. I keep them on my desk at work, along with some of the hairband sized ones. I even have a couple colleagues pick up on the idea and we are now seeing brightly colored hairbands wrapped around stacks of paper all through our accounting dept. in the kitchen, I use a lot of plastic clips or hair elastics to close packages.

We also have a great office supply contact for work, who was able to look into brands for us and found latex free rubber fingers and erasers. I'm also careful about making sure they order plain plastic pens for me, instead of those rubbery coated ones with unknown composition.

Clothing wise, I'm lucky to have been able to find pants, underwear and bras that have covered elastic instead of exposed and against my skin. I'm also lucky to have a seamstress mom who also helps with lining fabric (eg covering that sticky stuff intended to keep up strapless dresses, but usually just causes skin irritation).

Ones of the most challenging issues is feminine products. Many people don't realize that a lot of commercial products contain small amounts of latex in them. I would be really interested to know the composition of the new "Infinity" product. My solution was DivaCup, which is straight medical grade silicone, although it definitely took some adjustment on my part.

I think the biggest help is the increase in latex allergies means much better labeling. I'm also really good a finding alternate products and am always using things in ways in which they were never intended to be used.

If there are particular products people are having a hard time finding a non-latex replacement product for, I am certainly willing to help find alternates.

_________________
Allergy to vegetable gums (guar gum, xanthan gum, gum arabic, acacia gum, cellulose gum, anything else with the word gum, alginates and carrageenan), eggs, bananas, kiwi, pineapple (avoiding all tropicals) & latex, + environmental allergies, cats, etc


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2948
Location: Toronto
Wow, you've got some really great ideas there.

Thanks for sharing. :goodidea

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Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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