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Posted on: Thu, 12/21/2006 - 9:11am
Kathy L.'s picture
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Joined: 07/30/1999 - 09:00

Grampy, I think I can say that all us parents here thank you for taking such an interest in keeping you grandson safe. A lot of us have families that don't "get it" and some that have to curtail visiting and attending family functions.
My daughter is 11. When she was first diagnosed, there was not nearly as much information and hardly any awareness (yes, it has gotten better). We have plenty of adults here with peanut (and other food) allergies. It can be done, but it definitely is life-altering.
There are plenty of food allergy support groups scattered around the country. You may find one in your area by searching in the "support groups" forum or the allergist may know of one.
FAAN (Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network) was started by a woman with a food-allergic child. [url="http://www.foodallergy.org"]www.foodallergy.org[/url] . This is a national group. Also, [url="http://www.foodallergyinitiative.org/"]http://www.foodallergyinitiative.org/[/url]
There is no "national" group that I'm aware of advocating for just peanut allergies. This website was started by a mom who also started her own bakery because she wanted safe items for her daughter.
The US Labeling laws have "improved" (in quotes for a reason.) There was a labeling law passed last year that must show the 6 (or 8?) top allergens. But Canada is definitely ahead of us in the peanut-free department. The peanut industry is major in the U.S., particularly in the south. For example, Canadian manufacturers have been coming out with peanut-free versions (in big bold letters) of the same products that are unsafe here in the U.S.
There's a study going on now at Duke University that seems promising. Also, there's a girl on the board who is in another study for a product called Xolair, that doesn't cure the allergy, but makes the person less sensitive I believe. There was a more promising drug being researched by a smaller drug manufacturer, but then 3 major manufacturers got into a lawsuit over who owns this breakthrough, and that was the end of that and the beginning of Xolair (which isn't specifically for just peanuts).
I'd start reading the websites I listed. I'm sure others will have some good info for you too.
I can try to answer your questions, but maybe others can jump in too. Hope this helps!
Editing to add - there are famous people with food allergies (there's a thread on it here). But they're not stepping up a lot because (I believe) they're nervous about letting that information out to the public. Trace Adkins (country music star) has a bear you can buy from FAAN (I think he's got a son with food allergies).
[This message has been edited by Kathy L. (edited December 21, 2006).]

Posted on: Thu, 01/25/2007 - 11:06pm
AllergyKids's picture
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Joined: 01/22/2007 - 09:00

Hey Ginger-
At AllergyKids, we are engaging global corporations in this issue. You can learn more from our CNN interview on our site at [url="http://www.allergykids.com"]www.allergykids.com[/url]
We are also working on research into what has caused all of these little ones to have food allergies. Specifically, we are looking into what has been changed in our food supply in the last 10 years.
Did you know that about 10 years ago, companies began to genetically engineer plants like corn, soy, wheat and all of those other allergy causing foods? And that the soybean share the same protein structure as the peanut now?
We were shocked to learn this - and have been researching it ever since. You can always sign up for our free newsletter to learn more at [url="http://www.allergykids.com"]www.allergykids.com[/url] We are also working with global corporations who are using our universal symbol for food allergies to help identify these children at school, in the lunchroom, at a birthday party or an a plane. Our CNN interview on our site is a great resource to learn more.
If I can ever answer any questions, please let me know!
With hope for the cure,
Robyn
[url="http://www.AllergyKids.com"]www.AllergyKids.com[/url]

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