Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Allergy Acceptance and Fighting for Our Food

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Sofia has been on a dairy-free/soy-free diet for a couple of weeks now. 

We tried an at-home challenge test (after her chiropractic appointment) with a teensy bit of milk-based ice cream and she had her normal reaction within an hour. I double checked the recipe to make sure there was no soy in it and there wasn't, just milk etc.
I tried again the next morning with a nickel size piece of cheese (that she probably ate half of) from a local pasture (ingredients: milk, enzymes, salt) and within an hour she had another reaction.

So I think it's time to accept this for what it is.

The fact of the matter is, when she consumes milk and soy it is not just an external reaction. Her entire mood changes, she throws tantrums and her sleep patterns change (in a manner that negatively affects mom & dad).
So I've come to a place where the pain of change is much less painful than the pain of staying the same. I've come to a place of acceptance.

Have you noticed how food allergies are on the rise? Have you noticed how many infants and children have mild, moderate & severe food allergies? It is unbelievable to me.

I had a long and fruitful conversation with a dear friend whose daughter has multiple severe food allergies and has been hospitalized multiple times all before the age of one. We were talking about just this, why the heck do so many kids have food allergies now? When we were in grade school, there was maybe 1 or 2 kids who had food allergies and had to be monitored in class and at lunch. Add the skull & crossbones, evil of all evils to the mix - cancer, why is cancer on the rise? Why are so many people fighting the fight of their lives?

Sure, it could be that we are just more aware of it now. It could be the media, the internet, the access to information we now have. Or maybe we are better at diagnosing these things?

Or maybe it has something to do with all of the genetic manipulation, with GMO's (genetically modified organisms) with the biological warfare Monsanto and other biotech food giants are waging on the future of our food and the modern family farm? 
I think it does and I care. I care about the future of our food. I care about the multi-generation farming families in the US who are loosing their farms, their bread & butter, their livelihood. I care about what I am putting in the bodies of my husband and baby, of the people I love. I believe that we are indeed what we eat.

If the name Monsanto doesn't strike fear in your very heart and make the hair on the back of your neck stand up, if you don't recognize the name, then I would highly recommend looking into it. There are many resources on the internet, documentaries etc. I support the Organic Consumers Association and they have a very specific opinion about Monsanto. I would recommend examining the information on their site, but I would also recommend doing your own research and developing your own opinion about this company. Don't base it on what I am telling you or what someone else is telling you, base it on what you yourself have found to be true. 

To be honest, this has allowed me to see Sofia's allergies in a whole new light -- as a catalyst for a healthier future for our family. Because I believe that if I control the food in our family, then I also control one of the largest impacting factors on the health of our family. So why would I not change? 
Sofia's allergies have helped me to convert our way of eating to an even healthier, whole foods regimen. We ate pretty whole before - pretty organic. But not whole enough. We still enjoy/ed eating out, which can rarely be trusted, but is so easy and relaxing. Even harder is that fact that our extended family members still eat the good 'ol fashioned American way. Well, the 1950's American way. Not the pre-WWII no such thing as organic because all food was organic American way.
And, well, shoot, we really enjoy hanging out with our family and that usually involves food.

So it is not easy. But are big life-saving changes ever easy? Probably not. 

So we are changing the way we eat. Even more. To the extreme. Because we love and care about our daughter and we love and care about our health, our future, the future of our family.

Items We Have Already Eliminated From our Home
  • All store-bought canned foods (except for some organic canned vegetables)
  • All modern-processed foods (items with un-pronounceable ingredients, long shelf lives, ingredients that can't be purchased at the grocery store) 
  • All non-organic foods 
  • All non-organic, caged meats that come from some unknown God-forsaken place
  • All foods containing soy
  • Any fruits or vegetables shipped from more than 7 hours away (non-local) 
Items We Are In the Process of Eliminating
  • All store-bought canned foods (I plan on starting to can our own seasonal vegetables)
  • All non-local foods (with some minor exceptions like coffee/tea, some staple dry-goods etc.)
  • Any eating out at restaurants that use foods from unknown or questionable sources (I can think of only 3 off the top of my head that are safe)
I don't expect this to be easy. The husband and I love food and well, we love eating out.
But then again, we love to cook and we're pretty good at it.
So here goes.
Here is to a reaction free daughter and a much healthier tomorrow!

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