Legumes/nuts in the great outdoors

Posted on: Sun, 08/31/2003 - 4:10pm
Edinview's picture
Joined: 08/25/2003 - 09:00

Hi, I'm new to the list. We found out our 2 yo son has PA and were advised to avoid tree nuts and to challenge with legumes at home. We began with a swipe of baked bean across half his lower lip and had swelling - a little less than twice as big as his lip is normally, for about 15 minutes, and we gave some Zyrtec and it went away, and no other symptoms. (His first exposure to peanut resulted in vomiting, diarrhea, hives and facial swelling.) The nurse at our allergist's office said that we should plan on avoiding all legumes - even though he had been eating peas, and beans of every sort up to the day of the peanut reaction. We were told that there was a high probability of outgrowing the legume allergy, but just avoid it for these years.

We love being outdoors, and in Minnesota we only have a few short months to be able to play outside all day.

Our problem is that our yard is besieged by oak trees that drop bushels of acorns on our lawn. We also have a honey locust tree in the one area of our yard that doesn't have acorns. I have read the messages from parents who say that their kids have handled acorns safely, but our acorns tend to get stepped on and mashed into our lawn, so the nut part of the acorn is exposed and this acorn mash sticks around for a long, long time. The honey locust tree has foot long seed pods (that resemble pea pods) that get dropped on our driveway everyday for most of the year, then we drive over them, or they split open on their own and out come these little seeds. Last year we saw our son pick up these seeds and play with them and put them in his mouth. Does anyone have any experience with this type of exposure for their PA children? Nothing has happened so far, but I haven't let my son out into our own yard long enough for him to roll around in the grass, or sit down and pick anything up. I would love to let him have the normal experience of exploring his own backyard if I could feel it was reasonably safe from reactions.

Thanks for all the great posts on other topics, I've found them tremendously helpful both with information and with dispelling the feeling that I'm alone in dealing with this terrible situation.

Posted on: Sun, 08/31/2003 - 9:36pm
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Welcome Edinview!
I also was wondering about acorns when Jenna was first diagnosed with PA. I've bumped up a topic on acorns for you.
We also have acorns all over our yard and Jenna has not had a problem with them.
- Sarah

Posted on: Tue, 09/02/2003 - 12:28pm
Edinview's picture
Joined: 08/25/2003 - 09:00

Sarah, Thanks for your reply. I was wondering if Jenna has been around the acorns when they've been stepped on or crushed so that the nut meat is exposed? I assume so, since we can hear the popping of the acorn shells whenever we walk through our yard. We do walk through that area and then back into the house and no reactions yet. I still wonder about the Locust tree seeds though since I've never seen anybody post on that.

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 1:01am
Sarahfran's picture
Joined: 06/08/2000 - 09:00

We've had to deal with this problem/fear as well. Like you, once we had the peanut allergy diagnosis, we took the additional precaution of also avoiding tree nuts--hard to do when your yard is completely covered with acorns! We also have a crazy neighbor who insists on feeding peanuts to the squirrels, despite our repeated requests for her to stop doing this. We find peanuts on our front porch, all over the sidewalk, in the sandbox, in our flower beds, etc. Our yard is like a minefield.
But short of moving to someplace with no trees, there isn't much we CAN do except be vigilant. Over time, we've become less worried about the acorns--it's been nearly four years since Claire's PA diagnosis, and she's never had a reaction to tree nuts. We do tell her to not pick them up and play with them, and she's been agreeable to that. This is the first year that we've let her play in the yard without us right there watching her every move.
For the peanuts, we regularly police the yard, picking up and disposing of any peanuts we find. We taught Claire early on to recognize peanuts both in and out of their shell and she knows not to go anywhere near them. We make a big production of it whenever we find one, treating it like toxic waste almost so she gets the point. She also remembers her worst peanut reaction, so she has no curiosity or desire to touch the peanuts.
I guess that's the only advice I can give you--be careful and teach your child to also be careful and not touch anything questionable and to never, never, never put anything in his mouth that he finds outside.
Good luck!

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 1:07am
e-mom's picture
Joined: 04/23/2000 - 09:00

Yes my ds has picked up acorns that had been crushed and he didn't have any type of reaction. He has also picked up the pods from Locusts trees--no reaction at all.
Ds eats beans and peas regularly without any problems either.
However, ds has never had a reaction like you mentioned your son having. So your son may be more sensitive than my ds is.
I don't know--you just never know with this darn allergy!!
On another note, when it starts snowing (did I actually just use that word--shudder) you shouldn't feel that you need to keep ds in the house. Snow is sooooo fun for kids. My kids just love building snowmen and making snow angels. Last year they realized that throwing snowballs at mommy was fun!!! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/biggrin.gif[/img] I know that Minnesota winters can be brutal but are they brutal the entire winter?
P.S. Nice chatting with you last night.

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 9:15am
Nutster's picture
Joined: 06/28/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Edinview:
[b]Hi, I'm new to the list. [/b]
Before you go any further, you might want to consider powerful antidepressants and other mind altering drugs. You'll find most of the people on this site use them. Just search the messages for the antidepressants thread, it's out there somewhere. You might find the conversation here makes more sense when you are heavily medicated; I am not so medicated, so it doesn't always make sense to me.
Quote:[b]Does anyone have any experience with this type of exposure for their PA children? Nothing has happened so far, but I haven't let my son out into our own yard long enough for him to roll around in the grass, or sit down and pick anything up. I would love to let him have the normal experience of exploring his own backyard if I could feel it was reasonably safe from reactions.[/b]
If you read the referenced thread, you'll see that the suggestion here is that not only should you cut down the trees on your property, but also cut down and/or poison(!) the trees on your neighbors property. I am not making this stuff up. Those were the recommendations.

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 9:31am
joeybeth's picture
Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

you are a jerk. should a pa and/or tna child be exposed to tree nuts such as acorns is a reasonable question to ask. no one has said one single thing that seemed like an over-reaction or over-exaggeration. i'm sure there are no more PA parents on antidepressants and other medications than in the general population. as always, you attempt to distort things. it's a good thing you fancy yourself to be so clever...no one else here does.

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 9:32am
joeybeth's picture
Joined: 09/01/2006 - 09:00

just thinking, nutster, perhaps you SHOULD be medicated......

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 3:25pm
Edinview's picture
Joined: 08/25/2003 - 09:00

I just heard from our allergist today regarding the acorns and locust tree seed pods. She said that there hasn't been enough data or study to indicate whether there is any risk of allergic reaction from acorns or locust seeds. She said that because our son had such a severe peanut reaction, and also is allergic to legumes, we should just keep him away from the areas with the acorns, and to watch him with the locust tree seeds to make sure he doesn't eat them.
I want everyone to know that I don't feel all trees need to be eradicated to keep my son and other PA kids safe. I did want to know whether anyone had any experience with their kids and acorns or locust tree seeds. Again, I'm very new to this allergy and I'm just getting a feel for managing risks. Before PA, I would never have known that food allergy reactions could be life threatening. Before PA, I thought avoidance of peanut free foods because of possible peanut cross contamination was extreme. So now I'm trying to figure out what's reasonable and what's excessive.

Posted on: Wed, 09/03/2003 - 3:52pm
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Nutster:
[b] I am not so medicated, so it doesn't always make sense to me.
[i]medication envy?[/i]
PS: "I am not so....."
Does this indicate to [i]some degree?[/i] or [i]"as"[/i], or something else?

Posted on: Thu, 09/04/2003 - 12:41am
pgrubbs's picture
Joined: 10/27/2003 - 09:00

I am sorry you have had this experience on the list! Welcome to the list- it is a great place to get information. Our DD is also severely PA. We also live on a wooded lot. DD has had no issues with tree nuts and is not allergic to them at this time. We are watching DD carefully when outside. She has always played with acorns and hickory nuts (she loves all things in nature, esp. trees), so I'm keeping fingers crossed, redirecting when outside, and hoping we aren't sensitizing her.



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