Travel & Adventure with Food Allergies
A vow to live a life of travel and adventure looked different before food allergies, asthma and severe eczema consumed the life of us and our infant. Here I share our experiences, trials and tribulations, and helpful tips to encourage you to maintain your life of adventure when unexpected changes alter plans!
Traveling with Food Allergies
A life full of adventure and travel looked much different 5 years ago.
our journey to where we are today and how we can help you!
We vowed we would live a life of travel and adventure with our children and show them the world.
The excitement of flying across the country, staying in small villages, visiting major cities – experiencing new food, new people and new things. The dreams were endless!
The dreams are still alive and well, we still vow to show our children a life of adventure and travel. It just takes on extra emotion (or two) these days – extreme anxiety and fear.
El was diagnosed with food allergies at just over six months old. Still being a breastfed baby and just starting to learn to eat mashed whole foods, I hadn’t quite taken in the significance and depth of what we were told.
I adjusted my diet and we carried on. As we graduated from puréed avocado and sweet potato, to pieces of roasted chicken and spaghetti and meatballs, I quickly realized how the cooking habits I had created over the past 20 years were no longer valid.
Then, we set off for our first fall adventure with our baby girl. It hit me. There was no grabbing sandwiches at the store or ‘figuring it out’ on the way. I needed to pack everything.
Ensure we had prepared food, and food we could prepare if needed. And, that the Epipen and Benadryl were easy to access at all times. My excitement of taking El for her first adventure seemed to fade and the anxiety started to take over. “What if” kept playing in my head. “What if she has a reaction and we are so far from a health center”, “what if she is allergic to something else I am bringing”, “what if our friends have something she can’t have”… and on and on went my mind, letting my head fill with thoughts of fear and panic. The excitement that was once there seeped from me like sweat after a summertime run.
As time has progressed the excitement lingers longer and our vows have yet to change. What has changed, is the perspective at which we look at everything. How we plan a trip, what we pack, when we pack, where we are staying and who will we be going with.
Four years later, I am still learning, and still have anxiety that starts to creep in as we plan a trip. But I can now suppress the full-body takeover and allow myself to fill with excitement… and caution. I think about all the things I can control, and do control. We talk about the precautions we need to take and what we need to be aware of for safety and health reasons – but we also talk about the fun and excitement we are going to have as we set out for a new adventure.
Travel looks much different for me than it used to, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t FUN! Steps I take now, that are crucial for our adventures – whether planned in advance vacations or last minute day trips – start with notes.
I LOVE sticky notes, electronic lists and paper calendars. Something about pen to paper and being able to physically cross something off that satisfies my soul. I also love having things saved in an easily searchable document. 🙂
Enjoy a few of high-level level tips for making travel with food allergies a little less stressful. Then check out the more in-depth articles on what and how to prep food for different travel, including air travel tips and items!