My Food Allergy Christmas List

Dear Santa,

I know there are many terrible diseases that we don't yet understand. We wish for a cure for cancer, Alzheimer's, heart disease and the other threats many of us have faced in our families. Since we deal with food allergies every day in our family, I have just a short Christmas list for you.

I wish we could go into any restaurant and have food allergies be taken seriously. How wonderful it would be to know that the restaurant kitchen is as safe as my own and we have no worries of cross-contamination or hidden ingredients.

I wish food manufacturers would be transparent about the ingredients in their foods. This goes for manufacturers in other countries as well. List them clearly in an easy to recognize way. And enlarge the print too. Many grandparents of kids with food allergies complain they can't read the small words.

I wish every child in every state had the right to carry their life saving medications if their parents and doctors determine it is safe for them to do so.

I wish all healthcare workers were educated about food allergies- from diagnosis through treatment to daily living issues.

I wish food allergy education reached everyone so there were no more misunderstandings, hurt feelings or accidents.

I wish I didn't have to have a line in my child's school healthcare plan stating "there will be zero tolerance for bullying related to food allergy". This covers the kid who think it's funny to put a peanut butter covered finger in the face of a peanut allergic child. It also covers children who verbally threaten or make fun of kids with food allergies.

Of course my big wish is for an understanding of food allergies that leads to a cure. May the next generation not have to fear a glass of milk or a peanut butter sandwich.

Please enjoy the cookies. They are free of dairy, eggs and nuts, but they do contain wheat. There's a glass of water for you to drink and the carrots are for the reindeer.

Sincerely,

The Food Allergy Assistant
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