Food

Special

Let the rant begin . . . now.

I’ve always known I was special. I mean, my mom always told me I was a special girl with special talents and gifts. Little did I know that one of my “special” gifts is the inability to process certain foods in my body.

It’s been around 2 months since I was diagnosed with my food allergies, and to be honest, it hasn’t gotten any less frustrating. Just when I figure out certain ingredients to avoid in processed foods (watching out dextrose, corn syrup, corn starch, etc.), new culprits pop up and I still have unexplainable pain from time to time. Each time this happens, for instance when I have stomach pain for about a week in a row, Aaron and I reexamine everything I’ve been eating to try and figure out if I’ve been eating something bad for me. I think we nailed another culprit today, my once beloved Mini Wheats. Turns out it has rice syrup in it. My body doesn’t like that.

I decided to call my allergist and ask for a complete list of ingredients derived from corn (there are so many ingredients that I have no idea what they mean!) but all I got was a nurse giving me a website and telling me she didn’t have a list to help me. This may be too much to ask, but isn’t that kind of their job? What else are they doing except helping people manage their food allergies?

The nurse couldn’t answer any of my questions, and instead I was given this “comprehensive” website to peruse. Want to know what the website had to say about corn allergies?

Look what that “expert guidance” from my allergist got me. Needless to say, I’ll be looking for legitimate expert advice in the near future. For now, I’m relying on smaller websites and blogs who endeavor to make a comprehensive list of things people with allergies can’t eat. The lists are long and tedious, but they contain useful information like there’s corn in things like Morton Salt (can you say ridiculous?), baking powder, and powdered sugar. Figuring out the cause of the problems is one thing, but fixing it is another.

I’m calling for a revolution in the food industry. People with wheat allergies should feel pretty blessed, in some ways, because every food product lists include warnings like, “Contains: Wheat, Gluten.” But because corn allergies are rare, the resources seem to be non-existent. If the industry continues to make up scientific names for their food products, the least they could do is put a general warning on the bottom of the label.

Until that happens, I can be grateful for the diligent food bloggers who help me figure out what I can and can’t eat. I’m also grateful for t-shirts like this.

If I wore it, it would save me a lot of time.
End of rant.

6 thoughts on “Special”

  1. Allison says:

    That is super ridiculous. You should call and see if you can speak to your Allergist instead of the receptionist.

    And there’s corn in Morton salt?? Really?

    1. Rachel Taylor says:

      I should talk to the Allergist next time. Sigh.

  2. Karen says:

    I was intrigued at Barnes and Noble by “Food Rules,” by Michael Pollan. One bit of advice per page, and here are some of my favorites. Aaron might not agree with the last one.

    — “Don’t eat anything your great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.”
    — “Don’t eat anything with more than five ingredients, or ingredients you can’t pronounce.”
    —- “Don’t eat anything that won’t eventually rot…There are exceptions — honey — but as a rule, things like Twinkies that never go bad aren’t food.”
    — “Always leave the table a little hungry.'”
    — “Eat meals together, at regular meal times.”
    — “Don’t buy food where you buy your gasoline. In the U.S., 20% of food is eaten in the car.”
    — “Don’t eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk.”

    1. Rachel Taylor says:

      I love that advice! And you’re right, Aaron flinched at the last one and at the one about leaving the table hungry.

      Cool advice!

  3. h.v. says:

    corn is in EVERYTHING! i’m so sorry you’re having to deal with this. your rant is completely justifiable. i think this means you need to start your own corn allergy friendly food company–you will be the change!

    1. Rachel Taylor says:

      Yes! I can be the change in the world (Uh-oh. Am I channeling Barack here?)

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