Summer Allergen Safety Reminders:

Spring and Summer usher in all kinds of fun outdoor activities, but are you remembering your food allergy safety?boys in summer

Firstly, the most important reminder: You MUST keep all Epinephrine Auto-Injectors at room temperature (Not less than 50 nor more than 104 degrees) This means You CAN NOT leave them in the car during the Summer!!! (or Winter!)

Some important things to consider and be aware of as we enter the days of gardening, yard work, beaches, parks, and horse shows. What do all these things have to do with food allergies you may wonder! Well, allergens can be hidden in products used for all of these activities!

One of my favorite websites for learning about hidden allergens in products is Chemurgy and Allergens. Karen does an amazing job compiling lists of products that contain allergens- that most people just wouldn’t even consider as a risk! For example, I grew up with horses, I owned a horse, went to horse shows, was in 4-H and Pony Club. However, I had NO clue that the products used for horses hooves contain nut oils; until I read about here.

For all gardeners: Did you know that most potting soils and fertilizers contain peanuts & tree nuts? This could be the plants you buy at Home Depot, or a gardening center. So can those shaker cans and bags of flower seeds, My friend Ruth at Best Allergy Sites has an extensive list of possible products containing peanuts here.  Chemurgy and Allergens has a list about Seafood and Shellfish in gardening products here. She also has a list of hidden sources of Nuts in Your Garden.

Summer can also means pests. Did you know ant traps commonly use peanut as the ‘bait’? Elizabeth Goldenberg at OneSpot Allergy wrote about it here: “Most Ant Traps Contain Peanuts.” Another¬†animal repellent: Repels All RTU contains egg, and fish oil.

You can check out Food Allergy Buzz for a list of “Food Allergen-Free Sunscreens and Mosquito Repellents

Don’t forget that most birdseeds and suet can contain allergens. Compost can contain egg, nuts, and other allergens as well. Squirrels can hide peanuts or tree nuts in your yard. A visit to a park or playground will require hyper vigilance for cross-contamination from visitors enjoying picnics with peanut butter sandwiches, candies, or trail mix. Carry your epinephrine, wash hands frequently, and have a safe and wonderful summer!


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