From food to non-food products, it is extremely crucial to be on the look out for hidden allergens. Reading food labels and learning about ingredients becomes second nature when living with food allergies. However, even when you are comfortable with a product, it is important still double check the label especially since companies can change the makeup of their products. In addition, the ingredients in many everyday items will amaze you at times. I know that I continue to be surprised by many of the components of common foods and non-food products.
Here is some of the information about coconut, oats, dairy, and peanuts/nuts that I have learned throughout the course of this journey so far. (It does not include every location of these allergens as we are still learning.)
1) COCONUT/COCONUT DERIVED PRODUCTS are present in…
- many cakes, candies, chocolates, cookies, ice creams
- some Thai and Indian foods
- some shampoos, soaps, lotions, sun products, and cosmetics
NOTE: Everyone’s body tolerates and reacts to foods differently. For example, TJ mildly vomited (spit up) the coconut milk that he drank at his last food challenge. Therefore, his body does not tolerate coconut milk and he is allergic to it. However, the toddler soy formula that he has been drinking since June contains coconut oil which his body does tolerate. In addition to this, Exederm, the shampoo/body wash we use for him contains Decyl Glucoside, an extract from coconut oil, glucose, and palm kernel oil. TJ’s body does wonderfully with this as well. His body tolerates the oil but not the protein.
2) OATS are present in…
- many granola bars, cereals, cookies, puddings
- oat based milks and creams
- some moisturizers, face washes and scrubs
- the Aveeno products that we had been using
- some beers
3) MILK (DAIRY)/MILK DERIVATIVES are present in…
Aside from the obvious dairy foods like all of the varieties of cow’s milk, creamer, butter, creams, cheese and cheese products, yogurt, and ice cream, dairy crosses your path more than you think. Here are some other places that milk proteins and lactose exist…
- some baking mixes, baked goods, breads, cookies, crackers, granola bars
- some cereals (For example: Honey Bunches of Oats contains whey from milk.)
- some chewing gums (http://www.recaldent.com/c_where_find_recal.asp) and some breath mints
- some caramel and candies
- some non-dairy creamers and lactose-free milks (This includes my favorite “non-dairy” creamer that contains sodium caseinate, a milk derivative.)
- some soups, broths and gravies
- imitation syrups
- Lactose is used in some prescription and over-the-counter drugs and vitamins.
- Casein is in some art supplies like some types of chalk. (Check out the article below.)
4) PEANUTS/TREE NUTS are present in…
- Because I could not compile a better list myself, I wanted to share this amazing resource as we read and smile on to a great week…
- Additional peanut/tree nut articles that I found interesting and informative.