L.B. asks from Anderson, IN on July 11, 2008
Food Allergy Meal Ideas
We recently found out that our 6 year old son is allergic to dairy, eggs, peanuts, and chocolate. We have found some substitutions. For peanut butter we use sun butter, we bought rice milk, Ener-G egg replacer, etc. I found a great cookbook that had awesome breakfast and dinner ideas, but the lunch ideas were a little too gourmet for a picky 6 year old. I am having a difficult time with lunch ideas for him since our standards were grilled cheese, pizza, and mac and cheese. I don't want to feed him the same things over and over and have him tire of them since his diet seems limited. We have not tried any cheese substitutes at this point. I welcome any ideas. This is very new to us and we were cheese-aholics if there is such a thing!
So What Happened?™
Thanks to everyone who responded with food ideas that my son can eat. It really helped having suggestions of certain products that other people have tried. We are adjusting well to life without dairy, eggs, peanuts, and chocolate. I do have occasional chocolate cravings and eat a candy bar or something when my son is not around. I found some great cookbooks that cater to the major allergies and we have been able to make some cookies and other treats.
We are now seeing a better side of our son now that he is not feeling sick to his stomach all the time. It is also comforting to me that we now know what was going on and can help improve his health and life! Thanks again!
J.F. answers from Columbus on July 12, 2008
I'm sorry, L.! I won't be too much help, but I have a couple of ideas. While breastfeeding my newborn son we found that he had dairy and soy intolerances (through my diet). I too was a "cheese-aholic". We've used bananas part-for-part as a butter replacement in baking. I've grown to appreciate Rice Dream "icecream". And carob chips smell a little like sweat but tht don't taste too bad--sounds tempting now doesn't it???
I'd be interested in hearing how he was diagnosed (test, symptoms, ...) as I'm worried my little man might not grow out of these issues.
L.C. answers from Columbus on July 12, 2008
S.A. answers from Kokomo on July 12, 2008
My son loves the Amy's Pizza and they come with soy chesse and several other varieties for people with allergies. I have even seen them in pizza bites. And I believe the Annie's Mac and Cheese comes in a sot as well.
www.wholefoods.com has a recipe section for simple recipes. We use thier recipes and ideas a lot but we have been able to find several of the "speciality" products at Meijer and Kroger at a much better price. Both stores are even starting to make things in thier own brands.
K.H. answers from Youngstown on July 12, 2008
The soy cheeses take a little getting used to, but once your taste buds adjust they are a great substitute. The melted consistancy is not as smooth as regular cheese so Mac and Cheese may be hard to duplicate, but you could try.
I also use olive oil in lots of places that I would use butter, like grilling mac and cheese or cooking eggs.
Shaklee makes great meal shakes that are packed with nutrients and you can use rice milk with them. That would be a nice thing to have on hand for busy days or to change things up once and a while, and the kids love them.
My son has no allergies, but we try to cut down on dairy because of my past intestinal issues (which are now under control - thank God!)
B.B. answers from Columbus on July 12, 2008
Some recipes that we love:
Sweet potato fries (baked) seasoned with lemon pepper seasoning. yum! recipe here http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Ts-Sweet-Potato-Fries/Detail...
Pasta with coconut milk- we really like this a lot! The recipe is here http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=9483.0
I change it a little bit- more pasta, about half the lime juice. I usually just use the pasta, coconut milk, and seasonings. I leave out the veggies and peanuts, but sometimes add broccoli or something. It's good with black beans in it too.
Veggie pot pie. This is a favorite of my almost 4yo. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Veggie-Pot-Pie/Detail.aspx
I do a potato biscuit crust.
Black Bean chilaquile might be a stretch for a picky eater, but we love it so I thought I'd throw it out there.
I do butternut squash on pizza- pizza sauce, microwave butternut squash until it's slightly tender, then bake with shallots and chopped fresh sage leaves, tossed in a few tbsp of olive oil or margarine. I add some (1/4 c) white beans for more "creaminess" and protein. Then mash it up a bit. My ds and dp said they didn't even miss the cheese.
J.L. answers from Toledo on July 12, 2008
My friend has this same issue with her 3 year old. He is allergic to EVERYTHING. She has found a very nice health food store (claudia's - i think they have a website too) and is able to get him things there. Also our local grocery stores have organic sections and she is able to find him things there now. They also have a few places you can order dry products on line. She has bread receipes (he is allergic to wheat gluten, eggs, nuts, dairy, some soy...tons of stuff) and cookie recipes so he can be like the rest of the kids at daycare with lunch & snacks. He can eat 100% beef hot dogs & bologna (which what 3 doesn't love these things!) she is still in search of cheese that melts well. he eats rice cheese, but it is not a good melter for sandwhiches.
C.B. answers from Dayton on July 12, 2008
My son has a dairy allergy. He likes the tofutti brand american style cheese slices, and will eat them prepared as grilled cheese. Tofutti also has a frozen pizza that he likes. He loves Silk brand soy yogurts and eats one of those just about every day. Also, tofutti brand has lots of frozen non-dairy treats that are delicious--Little Cuties are probably his favorite.
D.K. answers from Indianapolis on July 12, 2008
I'd also go see Dr. Karen Marshall in the Fishers/Noblesville area if you are even remotely close! She is an allergy & asthma specialist. I know several people who've been to her and say that she has been right on target w/ helping w/ these issues.
You have to understand that many times these symptoms are indications of deficiencies or toxicities in the body. Once you change that balance/chemistry, the problems take care of themselves.
Unfortunately, many of the things we use or don't use in some cases..today prevent our bodies from building its own natural immunity and/or defense. i.e. I'm NOT a fan of antibacterial soap. It makes sense, like other things, if you use it all the time, your body will become immune to the antibacterial agent in the soap. As smart as we think we are, we are destroying our own bodies defenses and balances by the chemicals we use.
Cheese "substitues".......NO. That is a chemically altered product! You probably couldn't even pronouce half of what the ingredients are. Even if you can.......do you really KNOW what they are? What about soy or organic? There are more nutrients in organic and they don't have the chemicals that are in other products. Did you ever consider that maybe he's allergic to the chemicals and NOT the food itself?
I do understand the "cheee-aholic" thing. I have a sister whose family is the same way. We even put the word "cheesy" before their last name many times. Maybe its a TOXICITY to a chemical in the cheese.
What about almond or cashew (YUM!!!) butter? Organic vs. store or national brand?
When a child is outside and comes into contact with dirt and common things, your body knows what to use from that to build an immune system, etc. (This is the easiest way I know to explain it) If a child is "protected" - or so one thinks they are protecting them - from getting dirty, playing in & with things we grew up with......their bodies have no idea how to respond because they've not been given the opportunity to develop the immunity.
I think EVERY child should have to spend time on the farm. Yeah, there's a lot of dirt & manure there, etc but there are ALSO very VALUABLE life lessons and opportunities to become exposed to things that help the body develop a good defense system.
I have NO idea how your child is being raised, so please don't get defensive here. I'm an educator and just trying to help you understand what may be going on here, at least in part.
Again, make an effort to see Dr. Marshall if you can. I can even give you names of moms who've used her services. If you don't live close, it still would be worth the trip. I have her phone number.
Also pay attention to the cleaners you use around the house. If I were in YOUR shoes, I'd be using enzyme based cleaning products vs. chemical.
Do your homework and try to stay AWAY from drugs & meds. They only create more problems and mask the symptoms. Take care of these from the root source for a much healthier, happier life!
M.N. answers from Cincinnati on July 13, 2008
Books to get from the library, then buy if you really like them: The Allergy Self-Help Cookbook by Marjorie Hurt Jones; Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Kid Pleasing Recipes & Tips
by Theresa Kingma; Kid Friendly Allergy Cookbook
by Leslie Hammond and Lynne Marie Rominger; What's to Eat? by Linda Marienhoff Coss; 8 Degrees of Ingredients
by Melissa Priem
What might help: Many Kosher products contain no dairy ingredients when the word "parve" is on the packaging, or have a kosher mark [such as a "U" with a circle around it, for supervision and approval by Rabbis for the OU/UO] without a "D" for dairy. Also, cCheck with your local supermarkets for a selection of products that may also be listed as 'nut-free', etc. Note that this does NOT mean organic. Good luck.
K.N. answers from Cleveland on July 11, 2008
you might want to check out about.com dairy free cooking section, they seem to have a lot of recipes.
A.G. answers from Fort Wayne on July 12, 2008
I don't know much about it but my nephew was allergic to several things including dairy, carrots, eggs, honey who knows what else (He has out grow them all so there is hope)My sister use to buy veggie slices they look like kraft singles and we found them right with the other cheese. but that was awhile ago (he is now 12) so I am not sure but hope that helps you some. Also you could keep eye ut for goat cheese or try goats milk my boss makes both you can get the goat milk at the store it is VERY expensive and is sold warm. ours is near the condensed milk.hopefully you could find a farmer in your area that has goats and has extra milk and makes cheese. As with the other allergies if there is a snack or food he really enjoys look at other brands or generic versions, for example i know my nephew could not have oreos but the store brand did not contain dairy and were not to bad. I don't know all the other things but I know she did that with oreos and gram crackers. sorry not more info hope you have luck!! I just thought is he allergic to chocolate or cocoa beans maybe white chocolate if it is the cocoa beans. Just start reading everything and depending on the severaty of his allery you may have to be careful of things made in places that handle any of his allergans!
another thing I want to throw out to you to check on is many places are switching to peanut oil to deep fry things please ask before serving to you son. My Brother is very allergic to peanuts/peanut butter and we found this out the hard way. I don't know of any subs for this we just never ate it I also have a mild allergy to peanuts ( I vomit if eat more than a bite or two my bro swells and his throat and lips swell first causing breathing issues.