Have you ever gone to a birthday party and looked at the delicious cake, but realized it contained an ingredient in which you were allergic? Personally, at most of the birthday parties that I go to, I feel frustrated because I can’t eat the tasty looking cake. About thirty-two million people in the U.S.A. have food allergies (Gupta, Warren, Smith, et al). There are many advantages or disadvantages about being too careful or too carefree with food allergies.
Some people are really careful when it comes to food allergy precautions. However, some people could take it too far and feel like they are restricted from trying new foods. They choose their foods very meticulously because they might be too afraid of getting an allergic reaction or malaise, from eating an unknown food item. Also, they always look at ingredient labels to make sure they are allergy friendly. Although there are negatives about being too cautious, there are also many positives. One will feel safer living their life because they will have less allergic reactions. One will also be able to live knowing that they are ingesting foods that contain known ingredients. While some people are too careful with food allergies, others might be more laid back.
When it comes to food allergy precautions, some people are really carefree and easygoing. People who are too carefree have more negatives to face than those who are too careful. They have a higher chance of having an allergic reaction. Also, they might miss more activities due to allergen sensitivity. On the contrary, there are less advantages to being carefree than being careful. One feels less worried about consuming new foods. They could also feel less controlled because they don’t worry as much as people who are careful. Based on the severity of someone’s allergy, a person may be more relaxed with their food choices.
Personally, I feel like I am a mixture of being both careful and carefree. There are many ways that I am careful. I always carry an epipen wherever I go. When I want to try new foods, I always check the ingredients before I eat them. On the other hand, there are multiple ways that I am relaxed about food allergies. I try new foods but I make sure that they are nut free, as I am allergic to peanuts. For recipes that include peanuts in the ingredients, I find a substitute for them. So far, I haven’t had a negative experience using these techniques.
So the next time that you want to eat that delicious birthday cake, make sure that you have your epipen, and check what the ingredients are. Also, if you want to be even more careful, bring something that you know that you could eat safely. But, it is your personal choice of what you decide to do.
Grayson, Mitchell MD.(2022) “Allergy Facts and Figures”. https://www.aafa.org/allergy-facts
Gupta, R. S., Warren, C. M., Smith, B. M., Jiang, J., Blumenstock, J. A., Davis, M. M., Schleimer, R. P., & Nadeau, K. C. (2019). “Prevalence and Severity of Food Allergies Among US Adults.” JAMA Network Open, 2(1), e185630.https://doi.org/10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.5630