National Eosinophil Awareness Week

Hello! I am THE worst at updating this blog!
I kept starting this post but something kept coming up.
AND I got a nasty stomach bug that kept me close to the toilet for a few days. It was not fun!

But I wanted to do this post last week.
The week of May 15-21 was:
National Eosinophil Awareness Week!

So what the heck is that? As I've mentioned a few times before, I have Eosinophilic Esophagitis, also known as EE or EoE. This means I have too many eosinophils, a type of white blood cell, in my esophagus. There shouldn't be any eosinophils in the esophagus, but I happen to have quite a few. So when I eat something I'm allergic to, my EE flares up and it causes inflammation. When it gets too inflamed, I have a muscle spasm.
This sounds pretty painful, and believe me, it is.
But there are other kids out there with EE and other eosinophilic disorders that have it way worse than me.
A common symptom is dysphagia, which causes the esophagus to become really rigid and food is impacted. Many kids have to go to the hospital to get the food removed and some even have to have feeding tubes.

Check out these families' stories:

Winning Against Eosinophilic Esophagitis

The Joys and Challenges of Raising Children with Special Needs

Sometimes Mommy Needs a Beer

So the week of May 15-21 was National Eosinophil Awareness Week. This year the theme was EDUCATE:

So what did I do to EDUCATE?
Well I made some pretty rad tshirts.

I even had a man come up to me and ask me about my shirt, then proceded to tell me that he had an eosinophil disorder!

And I made this cool DUM DUM sucker basket. Spangler, the maker of Dum Dums, now sponsers APFED, the organization for eosinophil disorders.

I really wanted to leave it at my allergist, but they wouldn't let me because it was a food item and it was too risky for people with food allergies. But my boss happily agreed to let me leave it on the counter at The Vitamin Shoppe.

Though the week is over, there are still things you can do!

You can tell people about eosinophilic disorders, share this blog link, and even visit APFED's website to find out more. You could also donate to APFED :)

You can add APFED's facebook page or NAEW's facebook page.

You could participate in the Eat Like Me for a Day Challenge. You could eat like me or another EE sufferer. I can't eat anything with milk, eggs, soy, peanuts, peas and oats. And you can't eat out!

Thanks everyone for your support!
And next time you eat, think about all the kids and adults that will never get to enjoy that.


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Butter Cups

Hey all!
As promised, I'm here to tell you about my allergy test results. I was tested for a number of fish, shellfish, tree nuts, seeds, citrus fruits, beans, spices, and vegetables. I'm happy (and sad) to say that I didn't react to ANY of them! Which is good and bad. Good because I don't have to eliminate any more foods. On the bad side, I am still having reactions and we're not sure why. It could be slightly due to my seasonal allergies or some other hidden food allergy. I've noticed that I hurt after chips and salsa, but I'm not sure what I could be allergic to in them (I've been tested for corn, tomatoes, and onions already). So I'm just gonna stay away from that and see how I feel.

So as some of you know, this coming week is Food Allergy Awareness Week. Even less of you know that the week after is National Eosinophilic Awareness Week aka NAEW.
If you have read my introduction and Attack of the Peas post, then you'll know that I suffer from Eosinophilic Esophagitis. Now what the heck is that? It is an immune disorder similar to an allergy. When I eat foods I'm allergic to, eosinophils, a type of white blood cell, build up in my esophagus. They cause it to become inflamed which causes a lot of pain. Then it becomes too inflamed and I have a muscle spasm. But for other people with EE, this is the least of their problems. A lot of kids are allergic to almost every food and some kids have such severe dysphagia, which means their esophagus is so rigid and tight, that they can't even swallow anything. Many kids with EE survive on purely a feeding tube. This disease is so new that doctors don't understand it yet. They don't know what causes it, why only some people get it, or how to fix it. There is no cure or even a treatment. Most kids like me are on an inhaled corticosteriod for ASTHMA that they have to somehow "swallow." It's incredibly stressful and upsetting. So during NEAW I'm going to be spreading awareness and I hope you will too. I'm going to be updating what I'm doing and sharing some stories of other people with EE. I hope you will all better understand EE and be more sympatheic for children with disorders such as ours.

Has anyone heard of or tried NAET (an allergy elimination technique)? My coworker has a number of food allergies and has participated in NAET and is pretty much cured. I am wondering if anyone else has tried it or even if it would work in people with EE. I'd love to have your feedback on this or any other technique!  Because I can't imagine living my whole life in pain every day while still having to avoid all these delicious foods.

Last but not least, I made an alternative to Recess peanut butter cups! I was at Hobby Lobby and stumbled upon the best cooking aisle ever! I found peanut butter cup candy molds and was ecstatic! They're easy and super delicious.
I tried two different versions. One was with almond butter and the other was with sunflower seed butter. I've gotta admit that the sunflower seed butter was better but they were both delicious.

Butter cups: Dairy, eggs, soy, peanuts, fish, and gluten/wheat free.
 It can be tree nut free too depending on the filling used.


  • Enjoy Life semi-sweet chocolate chips (or the rice milk chocolate bars) - about a cup depending on how many you want to make
  • Almond Butter - about 1/3 cupOR
  • Sunbutter or other sunflower seed butter - about 1/3 cupOR
  • another "butter" of your choice - about 1/3 cup

Left: before filling. Right: after filling
  1. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave using a microwave safe bowl.
  2. Transfer some chocolate into the mold. I used a brush/glazer and a spoon. Coat the bottom of the mold about 1/4 cm thick. Make sure to get the sides too.
  3. Freeze for 3-5 minutes to allow the chocolate to harden. If the sides are too thin still, they will fall apart when you're removing the chocolates. So coat the sides again and freeze them again.
  4. Spoon a small amount of the "butter" into the center of the molds. Make sure you leave enough room for the chocolate topping, about 3 mm from the top.
  5. Transfer melted chocolate to fill the cups to the top.
  6. Freeze for about 15 minutes.
  7. Remove from molds and eat!

What I thought: These were super delicious! Like I said before, I like the sunflower seed butter ones better but these were a great alternative to Recess. These were super easy, but somewhat messy. But super tasty!



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Hey all!!

Once again, another year of school is coming to an end. I apologize once more for not updating regularly. I am a full time college student and I have a job and boyfriend on the side so I don't have much free time. BUT... this year is almost over! I have a few finals and papers due this week and next week is finals week. Then I have summer classes through mid-June and a practicum/internship all summer along with my job. But I will have much more free time this summer!

I don't exactly have time right now to post a recipe but I just wanted to update you guys!

I have an appointment with my gastroenterologist tomorrow and an appointment with an allergist Tuesday. I am still having slight reactions so I'm going to have another allergy test. I mean, what allergist doesn't test for fish, shellfish, and tree nuts!? Those are three of the top eight allergens! Anyways, I will be on in a few days to let you know how it goes!

Also, has anyone tried Namaste foods? They're amazing! All of their products are gluten, wheat, soy, potato, corn, dairy, casein, tree nuts, and peanut free. They're also Kosher, have no genetically modified foods, and are made in a dedicated allergy free facility. I've had the pleasure of tasting all their pastas and they are awesome! I haven't tried any of their baked goods yet though because they require eggs, but I am going to try them with an egg replacer. I'll let you guys know how those are too.

Also, check out Cybele Pascal's website. I love love love the two books she's published and she periodically posts recipes. I am also featured on one of her posts (4/22/11)!

One more thing - you guys should try making your own pizzas! You can buy crusts almost anywhere (gluten free at places like Whole Foods) or gluten free crust mixes. It's easy and super tasty. It's great because you can pick the toppings based on your allergies.
I made a chicken, bacon, pineapple, onion pizza and it was awesome... even without cheese! and I dipped it in barbecue sauce.

If you guys are in Fort Collins, CO... go to Ingredient (locations also at Leawood, KS, Columbia, MO, Downtown Kansas City, the Country Club Plaza, Manhattan, KS, Omaha, NE). It's amazing. You can create your own salad there. You pick what lettuce/greens you want then 5 toppings (different veggies, fruit, meat, etc.) and a choice of dressing. They also have sandwiches, pizza, soups, wraps, and paninis. All of their food is fresh. Apparently they don't even have a freezer!

Anyways, I will be back on in a few days with a recipe hopefully and my allergy test results!


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