Each month, FAAM is going to highlight a resource or product, something helpful for food allergy individuals and families. To begin, we want to highlight resources for newly diagnosed individuals and families. For most of us, receiving a food allergy diagnosis is scary and confusing. It comes out of nowhere; we have no idea what to do with the information received at the time of diagnosis and never mind the additional confusion when we type the words “food allergy” in Google’s search box, look out! Not only are there a ton of results, but many of them contain misinformation. We have no idea where to start or what information we can depend on to be accurate.
With that in mind, and remembering that day like it was yesterday, here are a couple of suggestions: Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) and Kids with Food Allergies (KFA). Both of these are incredible resources for solid information and both have informative sections for the newly diagnosed. Warning: There is A LOT of great information on the sites, take your time, you can’t read it all in one sitting. We hope the information shared here can help you narrow down where you want to start.
FARE has a Food Allergy Field Guide that is a must-read resource for anyone newly diagnosed; a refresher for those who have been managing food allergies for a while; or a helpful tool to explain food allergies to someone. It covers everything from understanding food labels to preparing those who care for your children. This guide also includes a food allergy and anaphylaxis emergency care plan. It’s a great place to start your food allergy journey. FARE has identified their Most Popular Resources, which lists even more links of helpful information in an organized and easy to read format. Their website is an extremely in-depth resource; each time you visit, you’ll learn something new.
KFA, a division of the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), has a Helpful Links section on the bottom of their homepage where you can click on New Diagnosis to get started right away. They give succinct and solid information, as well as many downloadable guides you can print and share (in different sections of the website). On the New Diagnosis page, you’ll also find their "Top Resources for the Newly Diagnosed" which covers a range of topics from more detailed information on food allergies to avoiding allergic reactions at home. Click on any allergen in the Common Food Allergies section for more details and to print travel-size cards to take with you as you grocery shop or dine out. KFA’s website also includes a recipe finder where you can search their bank of recipes for new dishes that are free of the allergens you select. Again, each time you visit, you'll learn something new.
This is just the tip of the iceberg on both of these websites! Both organizations are respected in the food allergy community and FAAM is proud to be associated with FARE and the AAFA as a recognized educational support group.
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Food for Thought is the blog for the Food Allergy Alliance of the Mid-South. FAAM's mission is to provide food allergy support, education, advocacy, fellowship & fun for Memphis, TN and surrounding areas.
If you have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately and follow up with a physician.