Saturday, January 30, 2010


Today after playing with her cousins, Sophie cried in the car because while she was there they made non-safe brownies, and everyone had some--except, of course, Sophie! Over the past few weeks, she has angrily asked, "Why do I have to have food allergies, anyway?" She will mournfully say, "I wish I could have some of that." Her feelings regarding food have clearly shifted from reluctant acceptance to sadness and anger, even grief.

After nearly 8 years of living with food allergies, is she just now grieving her loss? Does it take a child 8 years to realize the mark of food allergies? To see the separation and limitations caused by this, dare I say, disability?

And is it possible that everything I've done for her is not enough? The research, experimentation,'s visits, eliminating pets, foods? Is it truly possible that my years of depression about food were not enough to save Sophie from her own grief?

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Sophie Safe Food Guide

In the early days of our journey with food allergies, I would wait until late in the evening to go grocery shopping. My husband stayed home with the kids and I went alone, standing for hours in a single aisle in the grocery store, reading label after label after label. When I was emotionally exhausted, I would take my meager findings to the checkout and pay, bring no more than a bag or two home. After a few weeks passed, having rested and regrouped, I would set out again to seek battle with the grocery store.

Many times in those days I wished that someone had built a database, a website where I could research ingredients in the comfort of my own home, at my own leisure, and be prepared when I went to the grocery store. And now we have built one--Sophie Safe Food Guide is now available for anyone to register and find foods that work for them. When you create an account with the Sophie Safe Food Guide, you can set up profiles detailing the dietary needs of members of your household. You choose the items that each person need to exclude from their diet, and when you search, the database will return items that are free from the things you're avoiding. For example, if you are allergic to tree nuts, salmon, and you don't want to eat things with saccharin in them, then the database will give you lists of items with no nuts, no salmon, and no saccharin.

Our Basic account includes 1 profile with unlimited allergens. Don't forget to check out the grocery list--mark the things you want to purchase and print out your list for the next grocery shopping trip. Check it out at