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Friday, November 23, 2007

No! No! Not The Peanut Cookie!

On several occasions I have blogged about the fact that it is impossible to completely avoid an allergen. If you have a peanut allergy it is likely that at some point you will inadvertently encounter surprise peanut protein, perhaps just when you least expect it. It is critical to be prepared for an emergency response should that be required.

Today we experienced this first hand

We were at a Vancouver café
and my wife ordered an oatmeal cookie to go with her latté. (... how Vancouver is that?). I was watching as the café owner reached for the cookie and I said, "No! No! Not that cookie. We can't have peanuts!" I was slightly amused at the 'peanut conditioning' I have undergone. though I am not even allergic to peanut, (our daughter has the peanut allergy), I often react with an urgency that should be reserved for those who are actually allergic! It is very interesting.

The scare today was that I thought that the caf
é owner had reached for the peanut cookies, and not the oatmeal cookies. When I looked closer I realized that he did indeed pick up an oatmeal cookie but their cookie label signs were in front of the wrong cookies. The peanut cookies were labeled as oatmeal and vice versa.

Let this be a lesson that even when you carefully read ingredients, signs, etc. you could still pick up a mislabeled food item and unknowingly consume an allergen.

This is just a fact of life for those living with food allergy. Though it is important practice safety and avoidance, it is critical that you carry an epinephrine auto-injector, such as an EpiPen or TwinJect at all times.

You cannot be too prepared and you just never know when anaphylaxis might be triggered.


4 comments:

AllergyMom said...

SO true. Our allergist says that even with extreme diligence, you can expect a reaction of some sort every five years.

Take care,
Gina
www.AllergyMoms.com

Robin said...

Yes, I can relate to that sinking feeling, followed by the "No! No! Not that!".

Our favorite gourmet coffee shop has been carrying Divvies peanut-free (they're tree nut-, milk- and egg-free, too!) products. Have you tried Divvies cookies yet? We are so impressed that customers without food allergies said Divvies' molasses ginger flavor is their favorite cookie! Their website is www.divvies.com.

The Cookbook Junkie said...

Well that would be a situation where it wouldn't be safe to eat anything - never mind if they grabbed the wrong one, just having them intermingle is too dangerous.

I rarely eat Subway and I will not let my son eat there but I did stop there for lunch last week and I watched as a worker touched the cookies (they have peanut butter cookies and macadamia nut cookies here) and then without changing gloves she started refilling the tomatoes, lettuce, etc with the same gloved hands that touched the cookies. Everything was contaminated!

Amy said...

UGH! Cross-contaminated food is just as bad. Read Emily's story at www.foodallergyangel.com and you will know what I mean.

Amy