When Riley was around a year old she got into one of Ashlynn's peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. She didn't even eat any, she just rubbed it on her face. We wiped her down quickly but didn't think much else about it. Suddenly though, her face started to swell up. We had to rush her to the hospital. We were lucky and the swelling went down on it's own. Our pediatrician sent us to an allergist and we learned that Riley is allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, cats, and dogs. We now carry an epi-pen for her and they do not expect her allergies to improve. For this reason we are a mostly peanut butter free home. Wheat leads to horrible eczema on Riley. So we started trying to limit wheat for Riley.
Then here comes Robbie and from the start he suffered from eczema. No matter what we did he always had it. So, once again we went to the allergist. The news for him was not quite so bad. He has an egg allergy. The allergist said no eggs and his eczema should improve. Here's the problem with that. We try to give him absolutely no eggs, and he still has horrible eczema. It is so much worse than Riley's has ever been.
Well after all that lovely back story, on to the main point of my post. I have started researching ways to help with these allergies. My sister-in-law also suffers from allergy problems and she told me that I should try gluten free items to see if that helps Riley's eczema. So I did some online searches and I learned that gluten is one of four proteins in wheat that can cause allergies. The bad thing is that wheat and gluten seem to be everywhere. I plan to buy gluten-free flour and we'll be making our own bread at home from now on. As well as cakes, cookies, and anything else that will require flour. I also plan to start replacing eggs in my recipes. Thanks to some fellow moms and Pinterest I found a link to a page on PETA that helps you find replacements for baking, called The Ultimate Vegan Baking Cheat Sheet. I am not a practicing vegan but the tips there were very helpful in finding replacements for eggs based on what the eggs were being used for.
Along with all of this information, my mom happened to find a few cookbooks to help us along in our ventures into gluten-peanut-egg free lives. The first one is the Allergy-Free Cookbook.
I am really excited about this book, it starts out with an introduction to different types of food allergies and items to have so you can cook allergy free. The recipes each have a little symbol that tells you if the recipes is gluten-free, dairy-free, has no nuts, or has no eggs. I cannot wait to start cooking from this cookbook. She found me another one called Gluten-Free 3 Books in 1. It is huge book full of gluten-free main dishes, desserts, and breads. I have a feeling that I will be very busy making our family gluten-free. My first adventure: Make a gluten-free cake! The twins' birthday is in February and Robbie's is in March. I need to find a recipe that tastes good now, so that I can make their cakes gluten and egg free this year.