It’s a new year, which means a new opportunity to set goals and make plans. Whether this is your senior year of high school, the start of a new job, the first year of middle school, or just another year, these first few weeks of 2023 are a great time to plan and make this year count! If you have food allergies, you may even have some goals that connect to managing your allergies, such as trying new safe products, or even goals with OIT and Oral Food Challenges. No matter where you are on your food allergy journey, here are five food allergy goals that you may consider incorporating in your 2023 food allergy journey.
Goal 1: Find a new safe restaurant or fast food place that accommodates your food allergies
Especially if you like to play it safe like me, the new year is a good time to safely explore restaurants that have allergy-friendly options. Ask the manager at a restaurant to allow you to see their ingredients lists or use the links below of Just Allergy Things articles to guide you on finding new options for eating out:
Goal 2: Check the expiration dates for your life-saving medication
The new year is a good time to double-check the expiration dates on your Epinephrine auto-injectors or Auvi Q injectors. It is important to have life-saving medication that is not expired so that if an emergency happens, you will be prepared. But DON’T throw away the expired ones! Old EpiPens are good for about nine months after the expiration date. Check out this article to learn more. Don’t forget to carry two!
Goal 3: Stay up to date on any allergist appointments, Oral Food Challenges, or Oral Immunotherapy per your physician’s request
If you have food allergies, you know there are a plethora of different doctor's visits involved. The new year is a good time to make sure you have all of your upcoming appointments, such as any skin prick tests or Oral Food Challenges, scheduled.
Goal 4: Find a new medical bracelet or medical bag that you love!
While food allergies can be hard, purchasing something like a medical bracelet that you like or a bag for your life-saving medicine can make the experience a little less daunting.
Goal 5: Advocate for food allergies in your community
Every day is a good day to advocate for food allergy awareness! If you haven’t found your way to spread awareness in your community, the new year is a great time to start! There are many ways that you can get involved in teaching others about food allergies, such as by presenting about food allergies in your school, wearing teal, joining an advocacy group (such as FARE’s Food Allergy Awareness TAG group), or hosting a Red Sneakers For Oakley Day in your community. You can even start by sending the Just Allergy Things Instagram to the people you know!
While those are just a few goals you can aim to accomplish during 2023, there are many more goals, food allergy related or not, out there that you can strive for this year! I hope this list will help add a few goals to your plans for the new year. Happy New Year!