My short bio:

Hey everybody! I'm /u/Booyahman and I have 36-42 food allergies. I'm eighteen years old, just graduated from high-school with a diploma plus ~48 college credits and received my first EpiPen last week. I have a disease called Eosinophilic Esophagitis, or EoE.

I'm doing this AMA due to recent events in my life and the world where people just don't seem to understand what "I have an allergy to ____" means, and maybe that's because they themselves don't have allergies and they just don't know. So, being something of an expert on living with allergies, maybe I can help educate Reddit.

My Proof:

Myself, my username (backwards), and my EpiPen

http://i.imgur.com/Oe1ZJIW.jpg

I had the idea to do this at 2:30AM, and I really need to sleep. Questions answered, assuming there are any, whenever I wake up, or maybe I won't be able to sleep. Ask a question and check back later!

Comments: 138 • Responses: 50  • Date: 

PenguinOntheRoad22 karma

What is something that you like to intentionally eat, but still get a reaction from?

Booyahman17 karma

I still eat donuts sometimes. Things like pizza or ice-cream are what I'd really like a free pass on, but I can't kid myself into thinking I'd make it through that unscathed.

johnnynoname1214 karma

do waiters sigh and roll there eyes when they see you come into their restaurant's?

Booyahman7 karma

I've had some get exasperated after I try to order, but I understand that. If I were them I'd be a little PO'd at me too. By that point I generally just order salmon with no sauce and that's that. Pretty safe choice for me. I always wonder if managers hear that there's someone with a bunch of allergies in their restaurant and start chewing their fingernails hoping to not get sued, but probably not.

Unthinkable-Thought12 karma

Have you researched any methods to overcome allergies?

I'm possibly allergic to shrimp btw. Not just being a bastard.

Booyahman17 karma

I am currently on the allergy shot system to deal with my environmental allergies, as I got tired of those hampering my life as I became more sure of myself over the past couple of years and wanted to be out of my room more and more. They work pretty well, though I still regularly take Zyrtec just to make sure and because it helps prevent reactions to the shots themselves.

Allergy shots are pretty much vaccines for allergies, I think. They inject me with things I'm allergic to which helps me not be allergic to them. They are either unsafe or do not work for food allergies.

To the best of my knowledge, we have no process for dealing with allergies to food aside from avoidance. I get asked a lot if I can "Take pills like (some) lactose intolerant people" and the answer is no. It's something we don't really understand much about, food allergies.

Unthinkable-Thought4 karma

Thank you for engaging and having very detailed answers to all questions.

I had an allergic reaction to shrimp only once. Oddly enough, I was told I caused it by being exhausted and also eating dairy products the same day.

Have you any knowledge about this type of thing? Knowledge about the triggers....

Booyahman6 karma

Never heard of combination triggers like that, though I don't usually drink milk with nuts in it. Though I did like Reese's Cups and that's milk chocolate with peanut butter... Anyway, the question at hand. Definitely your immune system weakens as you get more tired; just like every other part of your body. I can totally see where allergies would be more noticeable the later you're up. If you're also allergic to dairy, I can see where it could've been a "one-two punch" kind of scenario. Other than that, I don't know why dairy would increase an allergic reaction's potency, though I'm also not an allergist.

Unthinkable-Thought2 karma

LIVE LONG AND PROSPER

Booyahman9 karma

\V/,

(That's the Vulcan salute)

geirrseach3 karma

Look into sublingual allergy drops. It's a desensitization method. I had severe food allergies as a kid, and now they're pretty much chill. Are you anaphylactic shock reactive, or just response reactive?

Booyahman1 karma

Will do! I'm actually going to get a new allergy test soon to find out how my allergies are doing. It seems like dairy has gotten worse lately, so more action might be looked for. That's why I have an EpiPen now but not before.

I have not had anaphylaxia, but according to my doctor it's possibly now (thus the EpiPen). Normally just response reactions though, with the itchy/dry mouth and throat and incapability to swallow.

geirrseach1 karma

I remember how much THAT sucked. And you're spot on about breakfast. I was allergic to dairy, wheat and oats the worst. What does that leave for breakfast? Fruit and eggs. Let me tell you, I got real sick of fruit and eggs.

Booyahman1 karma

I've started reacting to eggs, it seems. Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay... Fruit's good though, though only in moderation. Otherwise fructose will hate on my digestive system.

geirrseach1 karma

and your pancreas in the long term! eesh. What do you have left for safe protein sources?

Booyahman1 karma

Meat!

Yeah, that's pretty much it. Fish is a healthier source of protein that red meats, I think, so I eat a lot of fish.

PenguinOntheRoad7 karma

What is the weirdest thing that you are intolerant to?

Booyahman18 karma

Hmm. Well, there's a funny little food/environment allergy crossover that might apply here. When I eat various fruits, my mouth gets itchy. My natural reaction was "My allergy to these fruits must be worse than I thought!" I talked to my doctor about it and I found out I'm not reacting to the fruits; I'm reacting to the pollen on the skin of the fruit!

The weirdest thing I'm allergic to is probably avocado, though at one point in my life my parents tell me they thought I was allergic to, and I quote, "the color red". And I don't mean the dyes, I mean like strawberries and apples.

smsl1006 karma

I have the same problem! My doctor called it Oral Allergy Syndrome. I'm allergic to 16 types of pollen (that I know of) and as a result, I have trouble eating all raw fruits and vegetables. I also have a ton of true food allergies (some weird, some not so weird) so that's fun.

Booyahman2 karma

Yeah, food allergies are great... /s

Kaminothe2 karma

I have the same thing, I believe it's "Oral Allergy Symptom". Coincidentally, I also have about 40 allergies. Didn't think there were too many of us. For me, cooking the fruits or vegetables i'm allergic to helps.

Booyahman1 karma

Someone in this thread (maybe it was you?) mentioned that that cooks out the pollen that some people with food and environmental allergies react to, which is why the fruits work with us like that (to some extent).

smit066 karma

Have you seen Louie ck's bit on food allergies? All I can think about

Booyahman1 karma

No, I haven't. Maybe I'll give it a look.

crimstudent183 karma

How's it like when you go out to eat at restaurants?

Booyahman14 karma

Depends on if I try to order something that will normally have something I'm allergic to in it. The big offenders here are nuts and dairy. For instance, a lot of Italian places put parmesan in their spaghetti sauce or meatballs, and spaghetti is one of my favorite meals. In that kind of instance, I'll probably just order something else. My safety meals are salmon without butter or anything else (at fancy places) or some form of chicken. At one time I was told not to eat any soy. That's tough, let me tell you. People use soy as an oil to fry things in, grease things, etc all the time now. Must be cheaper than peanut oil. Not that that's any better for my purposes.

Breakfast is the hardest meal. Eggs, breakfast breads (waffles, pancakes, etc) are all made with dairy outside of my own household. I had an instance at IHOP about a month ago where even after I told them not to put milk in the eggs I ordered, and to let me know if milk was inherently in the egg mix, I still had a reaction after I ate the eggs. Even if there isn't milk directly in the food, it's possible the eggs were cooked on a stove-top that had had butter on it previously.

IntransigentAsh2 karma

A girl I went to school with decided to become a vegetarian at aged 12 and a few years later switched to veganism. We were on a summer course and she was served a vegan-friendly meal but ended up having an allergic reaction to it: the course staff had forgotten to tell the restaurant that she was allergic to soy.

The next day when we went in for dinner, she was served up with a bowl of raw sliced peppers.

Booyahman1 karma

o.o

I can't do spicy, so that's crazy to me. I have ordered things like "8 links of sausage" at breakfast places before though because I don't want to risk anything. Even then I have to specify it can't be cooked in butter.

IntransigentAsh1 karma

Oh, I think you misunderstood - we call the spicy ones chilli peppers/chillies, bell peppers are just called peppers. Haha she definitely wouldn't have been able to handle a bowl full of chillies!! Also, where I come from sausages only come in links, so we just call them sausages. Moving to Scotland and seeing square sausages was weird.

I've got hayfever but it's easily managed, very thankful that I don't have to think about it daily like you must have to do with food.

Booyahman2 karma

I live in America, so we have square sausage, patty sausage, block sausage, link sausage, Italian link sausage, etc. It's a sausage world, man. It's interesting, the distinguishing between the peppers. Honestly though, I find things other people think aren't spicy to be too hot! For all I know, bell peppers would be spicy to me xD

Cinderheart3 karma

I also have Eosinophilic Esophagitis. Huh, didn't know there was an acronym for it.

What medicines have worked best for you? My childhood was a battery of different medicines before we finally settled on Nexium for me, and there's still fear of long term side effects.

Booyahman2 karma

Budesonide was the medicine that removed my symptoms the most, but I decided that it would be the better choice to find out what the problem is rather than just treating it with a medicine, especially since we suspect it runs in my family and I'm just the first one diagnosed with it. I want to avoid a throat dilation in the future, so I did the elimination diet.

Cinderheart1 karma

;-; I'm really scared to do the elimination diet. I like food.

Booyahman2 karma

It's tough stuff, man. I remember eating lettuce wraps with a meat and some mayo on them for my entire first year of high-school. It took me over two years to go through the entire elimination diet process, and it was quite a ride. One thing I suggest is to be firm with your doctor about where the line is; my last endoscopy gave me a fever for a couple of days and laid me out, so I decided I probably shouldn't do another one, which is why we decided not to test for grains. Maybe not the wisest choice, but the one that I felt was appropriate.

(Is your username a Warriors reference? Can't be sure, but if so, you're awesome!)

Cinderheart2 karma

:( No. That's /u/Cinderkit

People get us mixed up.

Booyahman3 karma

I can't tell if that's a reference either, since saying that Cinderheart and Cinderkit get mixed up is a reference in itself, because AAH.

Thank you for asking a question, I'll stop being a nerd now (in this comment chain at least).

Cinderkit2 karma

/u/Cinderheart is a pleb. Probably only found out about warriors by googling the username.

Booyahman3 karma

Savage, hon.

You're both cool though.

breads-and-circuses2 karma

I'll play your game... Challenge accepted!

1) are you allergic to peanuts?

2) are you allergic to coconut?

3) are you allergic to dairy?

4) are you allergic to spinach?

5) are you allergic to fish/seafood?

6) are you allergic to crustaceans, if so what are the particular varieties?

7) are you allergic to cherries?

8) are you allergic to chickpeas?

9) are you allergic to soy?

10) are you allergic to Cheez-Its? (I swear I am am sometimes)

11) are you allergic to gluten?

12) are you allergic to sunflower seeds?

13) are you allergic to sesame seeds?

14) are you allergic to cashews?

15) are you allergic to eggs?

16) are you allergic to quinoa?

17) are you allergic to goat milk?

18) are you allergic to soy milk?

19) are you allergic to rice milk?

20) please tell me you are not allergic to rice???

21) are you allergic to yeast? (is that a thing?)

22) are you allergic to tofu (falls under soy, did I ask about soy yet? I must have)

23) are you allergic to cumin?

24) are you allergic to Asafoetida (aka: Hing or Devils Dung) powder?

25) are you allergic to walnuts?

26) are you allergic to Hot Pockets?

27) are you allergic to carrots?

28) are you allergic to pine nuts?

29) are you allergic to casein?

30) are you allergic to rennet?

31) are you allergic to canned beans?

32) are you allergic to gelatin?

33) are you allergic to coriander/cilantro?

34) are you allergic to tempeh?

35) are you allergic to mustard seed?

36) are you allergic to garlic?

Some of those are common allergens and some were just wild guesses. If you have to deal with even just a few of those that must be rough. Keep moving forward and know that random redditors have your back!

Booyahman2 karma

You're on!

1) are you allergic to peanuts? Yes.

2) are you allergic to coconut? Yes.

3) are you allergic to dairy? Yes.

4) are you allergic to spinach? Yes, but not enough to avoid it like dairy or nuts.

5) are you allergic to fish/seafood? No, thankfully.

6) are you allergic to crustaceans, if so what are the particular varieties? No, but I only like crab anyway.

7) are you allergic to cherries? Yes.

8) are you allergic to chickpeas? No.

9) are you allergic to soy? Yes.

10) are you allergic to Cheez-Its? (I swear I am am sometimes)? I think those have milk in them, so yes.

11) are you allergic to gluten? No.

12) are you allergic to sunflower seeds? Not sure, but don't think so.

13) are you allergic to sesame seeds? Yes.

14) are you allergic to cashews? Yes.

15) are you allergic to eggs? No.

16) are you allergic to quinoa? No, this stuff was a lifesaver when I eliminated grains.

17) are you allergic to goat milk? Yes.

18) are you allergic to soy milk? Yes.

19) are you allergic to rice milk? No.

20) please tell me you are not allergic to rice??? I am not.

21) are you allergic to yeast? (is that a thing?) That is a thing, but no. It's probably an intolerance, not an allergy as well.

22) are you allergic to tofu (falls under soy, did I ask about soy yet? I must have) I'm allergic to soy.

23) are you allergic to cumin? No

24) are you allergic to Asafoetida (aka: Hing or Devils Dung) powder? That sounds spicy. I don't do spicy for other reasons.

25) are you allergic to walnuts? Yes.

26) are you allergic to Hot Pockets? Uh, I could probably eat them, unless they have cheese.

27) are you allergic to carrots? No.

28) are you allergic to pine nuts? Yes.

29) are you allergic to casein? No, but it's in milk, which I avoid.

30) are you allergic to rennet? Also in milk.

31) are you allergic to canned beans? No, thankfully. I love baked beans.

32) are you allergic to gelatin? No.

33) are you allergic to coriander/cilantro? No.

34) are you allergic to tempeh? Made with soy, so yes.

35) are you allergic to mustard seed? Yes.

36) are you allergic to garlic? No.

My general rule is: I'm allergic to all tree nuts (which includes coconuts?), I'm allergic to modern grains (so not quinoa), I'm allergic to fruits and I'm allergic to soy.

Akashic1012 karma

I have Eosinophilic Esophagitis too, got diagnosed about 2 years ago. It personaly effects my life not much, is it different for you ?

Do you take any medicine to deal with it and do you do anything else against it ?

Sorry if my english is a bit off, it isn't my native language

Booyahman3 karma

About four years ago, when I was first diagnosed with EoE, I was originally taken to a gastroenterologist because my mother noticed that I would frequently choke on my food or even just on my own saliva while eating or just walking around. My EoE is caused by the ingestion of a particular food I'm allergic to (dairy) and results in my throat being sticky rather than smooth. Mine is the only EoE case I'm familiar with, so I don't know if that's the norm. While I was still ingesting dairy, I noticed that I was really choking once an hour or more, and needed the heimlich a couple of times.

Medicines I've taken to deal with EoE: Omeprazole, Budecinide (this stuff worked), Lansoprazole (probably just the generic form of Omeprazole but I'll put it here anyway) and something else whose name I forgot.

However, the best way to deal with EoE, in my experience, is to find the food that triggers it and remove it from your diet. If your EoE doesn't bother you much, and you think that removing a food from your diet would be more trouble than your symptoms, that's fine. It's your choice!

JHoward7770 karma

Hmm wheat intolerance I've heard is caused by glyphosate (chemical in roundup weed spray) sprayed on wheat crops to dry them out quicker the drawback is the herbicide leaves a permanent sticky unwashable residue on the kernels.

So, im wondering, could misused herbicides sprayed on the wheat cause your allergy?

Booyahman1 karma

Seems unlikely, as I doubt that the pure wheat extract on the needles used to test for allergies in allergist's offices will have the same chemicals in it. Makes sense though; I'm pretty sure I've got an allergy, however.

JHoward7770 karma

Yes, but the reason I said glyphosate is that my nephew has tourettes syndrome and is allergic to wheat and dairy.

Yet another person i know gets 2-3 day long cramps from eating wgeat products.

I wonder if your allergies, tourettes and the cramping issues from of digesting wheat are all connected somehow?

Booyahman1 karma

I think I'd need a medical degree to answer that. The cramps are caused by an inability to process, allergies are caused by my body attacking the food in my system and I'm not familiar with the cause of tourettes and the internet isn't helping me learn.

JHoward7770 karma

That's kinda what made me wonder. I think its something in the food rather than the food itself. Like shrimp allergy sufferers are allergic to the protein in the shellfish.

I thought I was lactose intolerant, but after seeing this, it made me wonder what's in our milk:

http://www.thecattlesite.com/articles/contents/13-1-8Cattle2.gif

I also discovered you can now get a vaccine against allergies

Booyahman1 karma

Yep! I mentioned in another comment that I have those, but they're for environmental allergies. Allergies are generally caused by proteins, yes. I've watched Food Inc and it's a nasty truth, but my family likes the whole "organic" thing, though those aren't always better than the average Wal-Mart brand stuff.

dizzybroom362 karma

I was just diagnosed with EoE a few months ago. The doctor still isn't sure what allergy is causing it. I've tried eliminating dairy and peanuts from my diet, but felt no difference. How did you discover that dairy was the cause of your EoE?

Booyahman2 karma

According to my doctor, the only sure way to know if EoE is "gone" or still present is to have an endoscopy. I've had at least four endoscopies, one for each of the common EoE triggers we tested; grains, soy, dairy and one control test before I eliminated anything. The endoscopy checks for eosinophils in my throat. If I remember correctly, the test should show something like 5-10 there and I had something around 40. After removing dairy, the number dropped to about seven and my symptoms stopped, so we decided that dairy was the trigger and did not test remaining grains, as we were fairly sure that wheat was not a trigger and I don't rye/barley/etc much anyway.

julyy092 karma

One of my friends also has many food allergies. She says that the more reactions she has to a food, the worse they get. What about you? Do you think your food allergies are getting better or worse?

Booyahman3 karma

As I've mentioned in other comments, dairy seems to be getting worse which is why I now possess an EpiPen. My environmental allergies are getting better thanks to the shots, I think. My other food allergies remain largely dormant, barring the mouth itching thing. Which I'm not complaining about.

LukeCrane2 karma

What is the most recent thing you discovered to which you had an allergy?

Booyahman2 karma

The most recent discovery has been that I need to avoid having foods cooked in a pan/grill that's had butter on it; that never applied before. Lately it seems like I've been reacting to eggs a little bit too, but that could be because of unclean pans or something (the reaction was at my house so there wasn't any milk in the eggs/butter on the pan).

HkerSteve2 karma

So normally what kinds of food u are allergy to?

Booyahman1 karma

Milk is my most violent food allergy, I avoid it whenever possible and will choose to not eat over eating something with milk in it generally.

RoosterSamurai2 karma

If you could instantly get rid of one allergy, what would you choose?

Booyahman12 karma

Definitely dairy. It restricts me from so many delicious deserts...

StetsonsAreCool1 karma

Have you looked into vegan baking? There are tons of delicious dairy-free dessert recipes out there :)

Booyahman2 karma

Very true! But vegans kind of like to substitute things I can't eat into things. Coconut milk and almond milk are both off (rice milk is my favorite substitute) but yes, I and my family make some dairy-free deserts. Also, the Marie Callender peach pie is a favorite of mine.

pulchritudinousest1 karma

Are you allergic to flax milk? I don't eat dairy so I'm always looking for a good substitute, and I really like flax milk.

Booyahman1 karma

Nope! A friend of mine has flax seed chips coated with honey and those are delicious. I generally use rice milk when I'm cooking, and I no longer drink any form of milk straight. I've always liked water anyway. Actually, I was allowed to drink milk for a while as a test to see what was still going on and I didn't' even like drinking it straight anymore!

catofnortherndarknes2 karma

Do any of your food allergies affect you if you just touch the food? Or does it have to be ingested?

Booyahman4 karma

It's enough if it's in my mouth; my mouth will start to itch and become dry. It's a very quick process, takes anywhere from thirty seconds to five minutes for me to realize what's happened, which allows me time to take my pills rather than having to immediately go nuclear and use my EpiPen. On my skin I have no problems with foods but I do have issues with environmental allergies (cats, pollen, etc). The tissue in my mouth must be more sensitive, which is why foods take effect there but not on my hands/lips.

MEAT_DUCK1171 karma

You look like the white version of snoop dog Also, is it a pain to order food anywhere?

Booyahman1 karma

All breakfast restaurants are annoying to order at, partly because breakfast food is easy and I make it not easy and they don't like that. Also because aside from meat, everything has milk in it. My family travels a lot so I generally eat some pop-tarts or something for breakfast and then I get an early lunch. Dinner restaurants can generally accommodate me, plus I just order something easy because otherwise it'll take a lot longer to make sometimes.

No idea how to respond to the first comment, but cool.

foxphace1 karma

Are you allergic to coconut/coconut oil? I've never met anyone else that is. That shit is in everything

Booyahman1 karma

Coconuts are a grey area; I never ate any coconut products before my testing, so we didn't test it. It couldn't have been causing my symptoms since I never ate any, I dislike the taste. But I try to keep away if I can since it's included in "nuts" a lot of the time.

Deneh1 karma

Hi! I was diagnosed with "EoE" last month. I've had occasional difficulty swallowing food for many years, and given my asthma, hay fever and tree nut allergies the gastroenterologist seemed to know straight away what was up, and booked me in for an endoscopy.

My question is, how involved was the "process of elimination" in determining what the trigger for EoE is? I have an appointment with an immunologist next month. I get symptoms maybe once or twice a year, so I'm not looking forward to a slow process of dietary elimination... Tree nuts are easy to avoid, but I'm rather fond of cheese...

Booyahman3 karma

Oh, dear. Well, give it to ya straight. The process of elimination is a must to determine the trigger for EoE. There's no other reliable way, and the endoscopy afterward is also important. Just seeing if you still have symptoms or not might not be enough to really tell what's going on inside you. When I did the elimination diet, I also saw a nutritionist at Duke (I live close by to Duke) and dietitian, which was very helpful.

Endoscopies, lack of cheese (I'm with ya on that one) and all that effort is tough, but I'd rather do that than invasive surgery twenty years later.

syddawg1041 karma

What college are you planning on attending??

Booyahman1 karma

My credits are from St. Augustine's U, I'm going to go to a technical college for a while and then try to get into the engineering program at NC State.

syddawg1041 karma

That sounds awesome!!! What type of engineering?

Booyahman1 karma

Computer Engineering.

dany_zero1 karma

When did you notice that the text was backwards?

Booyahman1 karma

I took the picture one time when it was backwards AND upside down, then I went into my program and flipped it around to what I thought would be good, but then it wasn't and I was tired so I just let it be and uploaded to imgur.

Booyahman1 karma

Doesn't seem especially important, though I appreciate the effort. If someone wants to question that I have allergies and am not me at this point, they may feel free.

haykam8211 karma

Are you allergic to any foods that common people have (etc. peanuts)?

Booyahman1 karma

I am allergic to all tree nuts and peanuts, which are both common allergies. The common allergies I don't have are eggs and shellfish.

DrDisastor1 karma

I have celiac's which is a lot different symptoms after reading up on EoE. You mention cheating in the comments, I cannot AT ALL, what types of symptoms do you see and what is something you cannot cheat with?

Booyahman1 karma

I can eat things with traces of milk cooked in sometimes, especially since some places are a little too eager with their ingredients list (though obviously TRUST THE LABELS). I have a friend with celiac's and yeah, that's not something you wanna trigger purposefully. I ate a donut at like 2AM last month (I make poor decisions) and I was sick the next day, itchy throat, inability to swallow, etc. I eat only soft, smooth foods in that case or lots of liquids.

ElTyto11 karma

What can you actually eat? I mean to what you're not allergic to

Booyahman1 karma

Meat. Most vegetables. I can get away with fruit, but not a whole lot of it in one day. Dairy is an absolute no, as well as nuts. I like fish, but I can't have them with butter. I like barbecue because it's just meat.

MakeLoveNotWarPls1 karma

If you got one wish, would you undo your allergies or make the standard money-sex-fame wish?

Booyahman1 karma

Hmm. I think undoing my allergies would be nice, but I'm sure there's a better wish I could make. Also, your wish sounds like three wishes, I think that's cheating, unless you can figure out a way to guarantee you get all three of those with a single request.

Mewn1 karma

Have your allergies made weight hard to control? How tall are you/how much do you weigh?

I have a friend who is "allergic to everything" it seems, and he's skin and bones due to the few things he can eat tend to be low calorie, mostly.

Booyahman1 karma

There was a time where I was losing weight when I definitely couldn't afford to. Currently I am 5'11" and I weigh about 140 pounds, which is a pretty good weight, but I had lost ten pounds when my elimination diet first started. In general though I have a good appetite and enjoy the safe foods that I can eat, as well as I have the means to eat them when I want. When I live on my own, maybe that'll change. Salmon's expensive.

CuriosityRoverAMA1 karma

Which of your allergy is the worst?

And to what extent do they hamper your daily life?

Booyahman1 karma

The allergy that affects my life the most is actually probably my pollen allergy. I'm not eating all the time; I am breathing all the time. The worst food allergy though is dairy. I must absolutely avoid dairy at all times, even things like butter having been on grills and etc. I never liked nuts in the first place, so the inability to eat them hasn't bothered me much, though avoiding them is sometimes a pain.

As far as affecting my daily life, there are definitely times where I can't eat somewhere because they can't accommodate me. Either they're very busy and can't afford to spend the time to make an individual meal, or I can't figure out what to eat and so I just wait to eat at home. One thing I will say, at more up-scale restaurants I often speak with head or sous-chefs to figure out what I can eat and get it prepared in a safe way. That's always a really nice feeling.

Because of my dairy allergy I have to take calcium supplements, due to my lack of milk in my diet. I also have to carry a bottle of Zyrtec, two tabs of Benadryl and two EpiPens with me wherever I go. That's a heavy pocket. All of those medicines are for when I accidentally ingest something I'm allergic to, which happens about once a month, to some extent. Luckily many of my allergies are far from fatal, and only need the Zyrtec or Benadryl to be dealt with, otherwise I might not eat out at all.

WillDr4Beer1 karma

Have you been tested for selective IgA deficiency? Or other sorts of immune deficiencies related to the production of antibodies?

Booyahman1 karma

Not to my knowledge, but I'm not sure if that plays a roll in allergies either, though it sounds like the two would certainly be connected in a person with IgA deficiency; allergies are caused by a person's body misrecognizing things as negative when they're just natural environmental things or food. The body attacks them, and that's what causes all the symptoms allergic people have, probably why we get runny noses and such from environmental allergies, as if we're sick!

WillDr4Beer1 karma

It does, subclasses of IgA determine your tolerance to a food. Everytime your body is in contact with something including your own cells it asks it: "mine or not mine", if it's mine the you get antibodies which prevent the body from attacking it (in the case of food, IgA has a big role in this, as it is one of the main antibodies in saliva. This is how tolerance is created, you're tolerant to all that which you're not allergic too, and the main endpoint of allergy treatments is creating tolerance). And depending on which type of not mine it is, it creates related antibodies or defense mechanism.

Ask your allergist/immunologist about it. I ask, cause I'm an allergy and immunology specialist, and people with multiple food allergies should have their IgA level checked.

Booyahman1 karma

Interesting. Thanks. I've had a lot of bloodwork done, so maybe I've been tested and it was negative, which is why I haven't heard of it before. Seems they'd have to tell me if they tested for it though.

kkehoe51 karma

What do you think about the idea that had you been born 100 years ago, you'd probably be dead in under a year?

Booyahman3 karma

Seems pretty likely. Without milk in my diet, it'd be hard to get all the calcium I need without the supplements. And then on top of that, my environmental allergies would be untreatable and unless I was born in a very high-class family, I would probably have to be outside a lot and be pretty miserable. Dead? Yup, pretty quick. My dairy allergy seems to have developed over time, so maybe I would've noticed it coming, but the other things would probably still have gotten me.

What a time to be alive not die!

yourmamaspenis0 karma

When you are 19 years old, will you have 38 allergies?

Booyahman2 karma

Huh. I mean, the data presents I should, who am I to argue?

Relevant XKCD

jumpup-1 karma

have you ever though of limiting your food intake to assured non allergic foods and simply supplementing with pills,?

Booyahman1 karma

My father is a pharmacist and has made me very wary of relying on pills. Side effects go right to work on me, some people never realize that drowsiness is a side effect of Zyrtec, but I get knocked out for a little when I take it. If I limited my food to only include foods I was sure had nothing I'm allergic to in them, I probably would only be able to eat at home, which just isn't a valid lifestyle for me, especially with traveling.