featuring guest authors; crafting tips and projects; recipes from food editor and sleuthing sidekick Cloris McWerther; and decorating, travel, fashion, health, beauty, and finance tips from the rest of the American Woman editors.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015


photo montage by David Castor from photos by Guillaume Paumier, NaJina McEnany, Abanima, Frank C. Muller, Scott Bauer and Fir0002
Addicted to the ocean and the color turquoise, award-winning author, Kathryn Jane, lives on the west coast of Canada with an obnoxious cat, a pathetically faithful dog, and the man of her dreams. Learn more about her and her books at her website. 

Food Allergies and Sensitivities

Living with food allergies and sensitivities can be complicated—and the ridiculously fine print on grocery item packaging, well, that's just plain annoying.

Developing food allergies after the age of forty, has been educational to say the least, and having a sense of humor is a life saver, although sometimes, it’s hard to keep a straight face.

This actually happened to me at a social function.

Hostess: “Have a cookie.”

Me: “No thanks, I’m allergic to nuts.”

Hostess: “Oh, but these have no nuts, I made them myself this morning. Just flour, sugar, butter, and peanut butter.”

Seriously? I thought. Do I just laugh and decline, or do I point out that peanuts are, hello? Nuts?

Me: “I’m allergic to peanut butter, too.”

Often when asked exactly what I’m allergic to, I reply, “It would be easier to list the thirteen food items I’m not allergic to.”

I then get, “Oh, you must be a very healthy eater.” I just smile and leave it there instead of saying, “Actually, no.”

I live on chicken, white fish, white flour, white rice, white sugar, and plain no-fat Greek yogurt, as well as potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, zucchini, quinoa, Jell-O, and Becel margarine (the Canadian one with no Soy.)

As my allergist/immunologist once said, “The more colorful and healthy a food is, the more likely it will cause you to have a reaction. So my diet is all about lack of color.

But here’s the funny part. I’m extremely healthy. I take no supplements (most contain things I’m allergic to). My doctors do blood work and shake their heads in amazement when all the numbers fall within the normal parameters.

And something my friends shake their heads at? I watch the food channel on TV, a lot. I love being around food. When we go to a restaurant, I enjoy the aroma-rich air while I eat my baked potato, or steamed rice, and don't feel like I'm missing out on anything.

I think it’s a bit like watching sports. Most of us could never be Olympic athletes, but we sit in front of the television and lean into the wind with the ski jumpers.

I’d like to leave you today with some little tidbits I've learned over the last few years.

Did you know…

Ice cream often contains eggs?

Fruit juice may contain carrot juice.

Most packaged foods, like cookies, bread, frozen meals, and meal replacements contain SOY.

I just looked at a few cans in our pantry—the hubby doesn’t have to conform to my diet—and I found soy listed on the labels of chili con carne, vegetable beef soup, prime rib soup, vegetable soup, and mushroom soup. Soy’s also in the frozen French fries/chips, soda crackers, and of course, Teriyaki Sauce.

Many packaged foods contain corn in the form of cornstarch as a thickener.

In the US, the top eight foods most likely to cause an allergic reaction are: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, and wheat.

Intrepid Women series, Book 4
Kickass women and the men who dare to love them.

She’s desperate to stop a killer…. 

Rachel Meyers has been on the run long enough—hiding from more than just death. But now the murders happening around her are forcing her to take a stand and the only person she can trust to help is the man she ran away from. Her husband.

He’s desperate to have his wife back….

Quinn Meyers has spent two years searching for Rachel. Now she’s back, scared and asking for help. But Quinn wants answers. Helping her is a given, he won’t say no, but he also won’t let her go again. Not without a fight.

Desperate love…

Quinn’s body still aches for Rachel, even though he’s guarded his heart since the day she left. Her continued secrecy is tearing apart any hope of saving their marriage. But more than love is at stake if Quinn and Rachel can’t find the killer.

Buy Link


kathryn jane said...

Thanks for having me! If anyone has general questions about food allergies, shoot them at me and I'll try to answer them based on my own experiences :)

Angela Adams said...

"Kickass women and the men who dare to love them." -- great blurb introduction. No food allergies with me, but I have many friends who look for "gluten free" on menus. Thanks for the post.

kathryn jane said...

Thanks, Angela :)