Amanda J. Moore, MSHS
I have severe food allergies. Several of them. Plus multiple other negative reactions to food and the environment.
My years of suffering with vicious food and environmental allergies, however, has not slowed me down! Nourishment is not simple for me, especially because I love to travel to exotic locations and I am very social (has anyone else tried attending a dinner party when there are 15+ normal things you cannot eat, some of which might kill you??). When I first started traveling for work about 10 years ago, I discovered a new level of complication with eating. I, however, keep figuring out ways to stay safe and I have traveled all over the United States as well as dozens of other countries. It's not easy, but severe food allergies do not need to be a limitation. Knowledge and preparation are the key to food allergy freedom.
In addition to life-threatening anaphylaxis to some foods, I balance the added challenge of significant restrictions in what I can eat due to an immune disorder called Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (also known as Mast Cell Activation Disorder). Recently, I began having random anaphylactic reactions every time I ate anything, and that was the final criterion allowing my doctor to diagnose me with the mast cell disorder. I currently take multiple daily antihistamines and prescribe to a low histamine diet. About five years ago, after a doctor recommended a gluten-free diet due to chronic anemia and digestive issues, I also learned to navigate all of the gluten containing meals out there. To add to the extremity, I also am one of the rare cases who continue to develop new food allergies as I get older (surprise anaphylaxis, while never fun, is also manageable). Food is to me like a bad boyfriend may be to some...complicated and stressful.
Having worked in the Pharmaceutical/ Biotech industry for many years, I have been able to develop a strong scientific base on which to expand my knowledge of food allergies and the immune system. While I am not a doctor (and if you are dealing with food allergies, it is important to consult one), I have completed extensive research and devised many techniques that have kept me alive all of these years. Here is my chance to share it all with you! Through my blog and analysis of recent reputable literature and publications, I hope I can make dealing with food allergies a bit easier for you (and I also hope you will share your stories with me!).
I now call Boston, Massachusetts my home but I was born and raised in Northern Michigan. With an intense affinity to feed my wanderlust, I have lived abroad and traveled to many areas of the globe. While living and working in Austria, I completed a Master's Degree in Health Science and had the opportunity to travel throughout Europe. Volunteering in my community and hosting allergy-friendly gatherings take up some of my free time. Travel, yoga, reading, dancing, archery, writing and going out with friends happily takes up the rest.
Building community where we can all support each other is top on my priority list! Communications that come through my blog, social media or word-of-mouth connections are very important to me - it's amazing what I learn even when being asked to help others. I am also proud to be a member of the FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) Community Engagement Council for the Boston area.