Just a reminder to make sure to check with your favorite local grocery store or chain about what types of wax are used to coat which products in the produce section. I have stopped buying nearly all packaged produce from Meijer, as most of it I find to have a thick unappealing coating. After attempting to hunt down at least one suitable lemon, I walked out empty handed.
Waxing produce slightly can be a good thing, as it prolongs the life of fresh produce and keeps it from going bad…but I am surprised manufacturers thought that a known allergen would be the best (ehem..i mean cheapest) bet for safety.
The positive light in all this: I did see a great sign in Whole Foods Market warning people of the wax coatings that they have on some of their produce. It has prompted me to ask which ones I should avoid and which ones I can eat safely. The rest I’ll pick up from my local farm market whenever I can. Don’t feel bad about asking, it’s your right to know.
After another run-in with soy contamination, I’m needing to remind myself and others; Source everything, especially any animal products you may consume.
The Problem: I would never think to source my fish, but when you’d never think to source it is usually when you have to source it the most. Find out what it’s fed before buying it to avoid wasting time and money. The latest offender: Meijer brand Tilapia. It’s farmed, which I knew was worse for the fish, but now I know it’s not ideal for us either. Farmed fish are usually fed a diet of corn and soy, just like all the other conventional livestock in this country. I’m not sure why I originally thought fish would not be included in this. I suppose the idea of fish eating soy seemed so ridiculous to me that I felt foolish for even considering. That ridiculousness has not seemed to cross the mind of large producers of fish for huge grocery chains.
Tilapia fed a corn/soy diet has decreased Omega 3′s, but increased Omega-6′s which is not ideal. Eating unhealthy fatty acids instead of good ones is not why most people eat fish.
Quick and easy fix: Buy only “wild” fish. It may be a bit more expensive depending on where you buy, but it’s better than waking up at 5:30a.m. to find a lump in the throat from a delayed reaction. Buy wild, and stay healthy.
Leaving you with a thought I find is very true and real:
Every thought I think is creating my future.” –Louise Hay
P.s. My boyfriend has really been a huge help through all these surprise reactions that find a way to sneak into our home. I was feeling pretty defeated this morning before I could figure out what had gotten me, but he reminded me that even though I was being realistic about the contamination, I had to stay positive. It's much easier with someone as sunny as him helping me. I really don't give him enough credit, so here it is for everyone to see! You rock hunny
After receiving a somewhat troubling email from a condiments company that tried to inform me that I wouldn’t react to their “highly processed” soybean oil, I am very skeptical of the FDA’s comments and laws which inform large food corporations that soybean oil is okay to use and not label as an allergen. I have personally reacted to “highly processed” soybean oil in both it’s oil form and when used in mayo/salad dressings. The fact that highly allergic individuals are still reacting to an oil which the FDA states as “allergen free” is frankly scary and concerning. It seems the FDA is more ready to protect the interests of multi-billion dollar food processing corporations than to listen to the people being affected by these sweeping generalizations and sometimes false claims. Luckily, if you have a problem with soy, you know that just looking at the allergen labeling at the bottom of an ingredients list is not enough. Reading through the ingredient list to pick out things, like soybean oil, which are not required to be labeled as allergens is a must.
I am curious how many people who are allergic to soy still react to soybean oil and soy lecithin like me?
Thanks for your input, I’d really like to start lobbying against these two soy derived products being unlabeled allergens.
In the coming posts, I’ll finally be discussing some great products for making your own gluten free, soy free pizza. I’ll also be showing you some great Superfoods which are naturally gluten free, soy free, and allergen free! Superfoods help fill and nourish your body with loads of nutrients while healing from intestinal damages from sensitivities..and after you are healthy. Here’s a hint; it has to do with Chia and the power of raw food!
Until then, wishing you peace, health and happiness,
I made a silly smiley face fruit plate today for a simple dessert for my boyfriend Yan and myself. Yan laughed pretty hard when he saw it, but it was very yum. I sprinkled some organic cinnamon on the pear slices on the smily section =)
Just a quick post reminding everyone to check their fresh produce for “vegetable wax”–meaning soy based wax coating! I found out firsthand by purchasing a large bag of Sunkist oranges from the Meijer produce section and not thinking I had to read a label for “fresh” fruit. Who would even believe a bag of oranges has an ingredients label? Anyway, as soon as I pulled the bag out of our pantry and started to wash the oranges for juicing, I felt a waxy substance on the peel and a small itch starting in my throat. Sure enough, the back of the back listed vegetable wax on the back and I was popping a Benadryl.
So moral of the story! Check your fresh fruits and vegetables for soy based waxy coatings before you bring them home. And watch out for soy based candles. They are often really pretty and decorative and smell awesome, but trust me, the smoke or even the smell of the candle will set off very sensitive individuals. So I guess what I’m trying to say is…read labels on everything. Even things you never thought HAD an ingredient label.
The bright side of this is that I’ll be buying a lot of local, in season, organic fresh fruits and vegetables from the market =) And there’s nothing wrong with that!
Leaving you with some positivity and a book recommendation– For any young women struggling either with food allergies, depression, or self acceptance, I really recommend Treasure Yourself, by Miranda Kerr. I mentioned last post on how Kerr uses her fame to spread positivity, health, and help to people all over the world. Her book is a great read for young women to learn how to embrace their uniqueness and deal with hardships that most young women will face while growing up. Here’s a positive affirmation written by Kerr that I wanted to share:
“May you treasure and learn to love every unique and incredible part of you. May you allow your soul to shine and your spirit to soar. May you find inner peace in the acceptance of yourself.” –Miranda Kerr
Best wishes and happy Sunday,
In the spirit of fresh, organic fruits and veggies, here is a photo of some baby apples growing on my parents' apple tree in their backyard. They are so sweet, crisp, and delicious this year!
It seems my life has been a bit of a tornado lately, and I haven’t had much time to post. Well, actually it’s been more like an earthquake…literally. Last week, I thought I was just feeling woozy after a double whammy (gluten and soy attack in the same day), but apparently a 5.8 or 5.9 earthquake hit part of Virginia today and the aftershocks shook our brick apartment building here in Ann Arbor! I was surprised to hear that someone as far as the Netherlands felt some shaking afterward too. Glad I didn’t have to add “earthquake-y feeling” to my soy reaction symptoms =D That one would have the doctors even more puzzled…
This week, I’m finally starting to put a small bit of weight back on, as my body is healing and I’m beginning to absorb nutrients correctly again. As I understand, soy can attack the villi of the small intestine in the same way that gluten can attack it in Celiac Disease. I’ve been taking some extra vitamins to help the healing process and was thrilled when Nature’s Bounty company responded to my inquiry regarding the use of soy in their letter vitamins. They responded with full details about allergen standards and cleaning processes to assure me that no cross contamination was present. If you would like the full disclosure they sent me, please email me at email@example.com, or leave a comment at the end of this post. Nature’s Bounty was super helpful. Be sure to read the labeling on each product though, since some of their non letter vitamins may contain soy, gluten, or other allergens. I am currently taking the C-500 with Rosehips and the B-12 dissolving tablets without reactions.
I wish it was as easy to contact and receive response from every company as it was with Nature’s Bounty. I’ve had to stop writing this post three times already today to try and get my latest soy reaction in check. You would probably have a difficult time guessing what the culprit was. I couldn’t figure it out myself for the last few weeks.
I’d been dealing with small to moderate soy reactions a few times this past week, but the worst showed itself yesterday and today. Here’s the scoop: I was using Meijer brand eggs in my allergen free Browine and Blondie mixes. About 10-30 minutes after eating said sweets, moderate reactions bubbled up and I was in the Benadryl zone for the next 8 hours while my body attempted to rid itself of the offending food. As I thought back, I realized that each time I had eaten Meijer brand chicken or eggs, I’d experienced soy symptoms. Though I have not confirmed it with Meijer, I suspect that they are using soy feed in their chickens. It’s absolutely crazy the places you find this stuff.
Yesterday (obviously before today’s realization), I ate two Brownies made using Meijer eggs and had quite an off night during the raging thunderstorm. I took two Benadryl to control the reactions over the course of 8 hours, and still had to take another one before hitting the sack. Upon waking, I was feeling much better and decided to treat myself to a Brownie for breakfast (C’mon, don’t judge! ) Shortly after, I felt a lump in my throat and the familiar stomach swelling. And it was Benadryl to the rescue again, before things could get out of hand. (On a side tangent, Benadryl is seriously awesome and works for me within 10 seconds. I bite open the liquid-gels before I swallow them for faster absorption. Whoever invented this stuff totally rocks…even though it rocks me to sleep). Long story short, I had to stop writing this entry 4 times due to the reactions from Meijer eggs in my allergen free mix. Moral of story and new mission: Find soy free eggs stat! And chicken for that matter. I’m wondering if anyone else has these problems, or if I’m just ultra sensitive. Let me know if you’ve reacted or what you think in the poll box, or leave a comment below.
As luck would have it, a new follower of my twitter page ( https://www.bethyglutenfree.twitter.com ) named @soyfreeeggs links to a site called http://www.soyfreeegg.com which has information regarding a completely soy free egg. I have yet to order or try it out, but I plan to contact them within the next few weeks to see where their products are distributed. I’m hoping anywhere in Michigan is on the list. But for now, I’m off to cook some herb encrusted broiled steaks while my boyfriend cooks his delicious Belarusian style fried potatoes. This hearty meal should help us both fight off this nasty cold we’ve had for a week… I’ll list the recipe for the steaks coming up in one the next few posts.
Next post: Soy free, gluten free Makeup!! I finally found it!!
Stay well, let your light shine,
P.s. Here’s a few pictures from my cousin’s beautiful wedding at Cranbrook House and Gardens in late July. The meal I had was a gluten free quinoa dish that was absolutely fabulous. The best part is, it was also soy free as I was sans reaction.