Exciting Insight from 2022’s Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) Summit



Dr. Trill came back from this year's FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) Summit with loads to share! We know as concerned parents, you’re constantly searching for specific items and info that your family needs.


From finding a safe flour substitute you can actually cook with to an alternative cheese replacement, resources matter to your family. We always think of you as we discover and learn new things, so here’s the scoop.


FARE is the largest privately funded food allergy resource out there. Their mission? Simple: improve life and health for our food allergy community. This includes research, education, resources, treatments, and more.


Today we talk more about FARE, two big research takeaways, and tons of allergy-friendly resources for your family.


Learn More About FARE & How They Help


For the past ten years, FARE has been advocating in every realm of food allergies. They fight for important legislative steps to ensure millions of us with food allergies in the US stay safe. They’re a privately funded nongovernmental organization doing incredible work for food allergy families.


Some amazing ways FARE supports our community:

  • Investing 100 million dollars into food allergy research.

  • Adapting the FARE registry, the largest food allergy registry in the U.S.

  • Playing a vital role in passing the FASTER (Food Allergy Safety Treatment Education and Research) ACT. This makes sesame the 9th allergy recognized by the FDA.

  • Promoting the Teal Pumpkin Project so food allergy children don’t have to miss out on the fun of Halloween.

  • Developing more than 50 FARE Clinical Network Sites where over 250,000 food allergy patients get treatment.

  • Launching over 46 clinical trials.

The best thing about all of this? Their crucial work helps families live healthier and better while navigating food allergies. We know the road can be long and winding — and the impact of helpful resources and education brings much-needed peace to our lives.


FARE holds annual summits to bring top professionals in the field of food allergies together. It’s a time to reflect, learn from the latest research, explore new resources, and bring hope to food allergy families. Now we’re going to share big takeaways from 2022’s summit!


#1 Research Takeaway: Parents Lead in Reporting Symptoms


We might sound like a broken record, but we’ll keep saying it — you know your baby best. When doctors dismiss your concerns or child’s symptoms, it frustrates you because it’s you living the day in and day out.


Dr. Ruchia S. Gupita spoke about a research survey she was part of that showed a vast difference in parent-reported food allergy symptoms versus physician-diagnosed.[1]

Image courtesy: The Public Health Impact of Parent-Reported Childhood Food Allergies in the United States


Comparing rates of parent-reported vs. convincing vs. physician-diagnosed food allergy.


We really feel the graphic speaks for itself.


You really do know your baby best. You can keep breastfeeding through infant food allergies, and we can help. Continue to advocate for your baby. Don’t be shy to get a second opinion if something doesn’t feel right.


We acknowledge pediatricians take on the role of caring for tiny humans who can’t tell them what’s wrong. They rely on you as parents for feedback and information. Food allergy symptoms like reflux or eczema can originate from so many different issues, it can be next to impossible to pinpoint the root cause.


Key Research Takeaway #2: Crucial Link Between Gut Microbiome & Food Allergies


A specific non-IgE mediated food allergy, called FPIAP (Food protein-induced allergic proctocolitis), causes mucus and/or bloody stools in infants. Food allergy parents who have a baby with FPIAP become obsessed with their baby's poop. It’s a whole thing, and if you know, you know.


Although food allergies come from an immune response, we also know the significant role our gut plays in overall health. It’s no different for babies.


A recent 2022 study (and the first of its kind!) shows key differences in the gut microbiome of infants with FPIAP.


Y'all, this is HUGE!


Over 1,000 stool samples were examined for this study. (Dr. Trill might have inspected more than that by now, but who’s counting.) Babies with FPIAP have a significantly higher number of Enterobacteriaceae and lower amounts of Clostridiales during times of symptoms or prior.[2]


Understanding which bacteria strains play a role in food reactivity could give us more knowledge on treatment and prevention options for the future! For example, promoting specific whole foods that increase Clostridiales could reduce sensitivity or may shorten healing time!


We won’t get too heavy into the gut microbiome but we can tell you it’s a very delicate balance. Not only does our stomach help break down food but absorbs key nutrients. This important study indicates that microbiome imbalances play a role in food allergies.


We’re thrilled about this new research and hope it gives our community in better understanding our children’s health challenges. Having a baby with food allergies requires hard work — and no matter the cause, you have to remember it’s not your fault. We’re all learning together the multitude of factors contributing to this health issue.


Now, let’s learn more about some awesome allergy-friendly companies and organizations.


Some Yummy Allergy-Friendly Products and Services!


We know how important good, nutritious foods are for your breastfeeding journey. Your body does a lot to produce that liquid gold! As a food allergy parent, you take it to the next level by making it perfect for your little one and removing certain foods from your diet.


But you shouldn’t have to worry about what to eat or how to find a replacement for your favorite staple items. Every year at the FARE Summit, the best companies supporting food allergy families come together. From baking mixes to candy — you actually have options!


A few of our favorites:

Founded by parents trying to find top allergen-free substitutes for their allergic son, Harry. Hungry Harry’s offers a variety of baking mixes — free from all regular top 12 allergens, and then some! Rest assured their production facility remains allergy-free too, so no worries about cross-contamination.


Choose from a variety of baking mixes including yellow cake, chocolate cake, muffin mix, flour, and even pancakes! On their website, check out a slew of recipes and enjoy making your favorite baked goods again.

Got a sweet tooth? YUMEARTH provides tasty top 9 allergy-free treats. Since 2007, they’re on a mission to make sure we don’t miss out on our favorite sweets because of food allergies.


From lollipops to gummies to chocolate, satisfy your craving! On top of being allergy-friendly — they’re also organic, non-GMO, and free from artificial dyes. Talk about a win-win!

A food allergy mama founded Partake in 2016. (Noticing a trend here?) Tired of looking for safe options for her daughter, she started making her own! Now your family can partake in the goodies you love without worry.


Enjoy everything from baking mixes for pizza crust and brownies to delectable ready-made cookies. Yes, certified gluten-free, non-GMO, free from the top 9 allergens — and they taste good!

APPLEGATE produces organic and natural meat products. They pride their company on humanely raising animals, never using antibiotics, and using non-GMO ingredients. They offer a wide range of meats free from numerous top baby food allergies.


Feel normal again with chicken nuggets you can quickly throw in the oven or turkey sausage that brings your favorite breakfast routine back into your life. On their website, you can specifically remove allergens to get a list of products you can safely enjoy!

VOYAGE created a nut-free spread to give those of us allergic to peanuts the creamy goodness a PB&J brings. As peanuts remain a top food allergy in the world, they knew how many were missing out — especially our kids who love this simple yet nutritious spread. Bring back the joy! It’s free from 9 top allergens, non-GMO, and safe for school lunches.


They’re working on bean-free coffee and cocoa-free chocolate, so stay tuned!

SIFTER provides a variety of alternatives to choose from with online shopping. Whether you find local stores around your area or put in an Instacart order, you have options.


SIFTER allows you to specifically enter your baby’s food allergies into their system. Then it will show you every product in their database that you can safely enjoy! Talk about convenient and time-saving.

The last organization we want to highlight is sobering and essential to our community. Born from tragedy, Elijah Alavi’s Foundation works tirelessly to pass legislation to protect food allergy children.


On a typical November day in 2017, a family’s life changed and a movement started. 3-year-old Elijah Alavi’s severe food allergies included dairy, and he was fed a grilled cheese sandwich at his childcare facility. They didn’t follow proper anaphylaxis protocol, leading to his death.


Thomas, Elijah’s father, started his foundation so other parents never have to go through what he did. They’re on a mission to get Elijah’s Law passed in every state possible to provide access, education, and equity surrounding food allergies.


Tireless Advocates Are Battling For Your Food Allergy Family


Food allergies are on the rise — and we’re rising to help your family! We’re so happy to be part of FARE and benefit from these amazing summits. These meetings allow professionals and allergy families to expand their knowledge and share resources.


We want the best for your food allergy baby. Whether it be for months, years, or forever — FARE and Free To Feed work hard to learn and provide valuable resources you can use.


If you’re navigating life with a food allergy baby and have a million questions, don’t spend hours on Google getting different answers. Book a consult with one of our food allergy experts, like Christsenio. As a pediatric nurse and food allergy expert, she’s seen it all. You don’t have to navigate these confusing waters alone. We’re here for you.


If you want full-access support, consider our Food Allergy Support Package. A massive bang for your buck, you get 3 months' worth of resources, education, and consults for your journey.


Always remember: You don’t have to do this alone, and you really are doing a great job!


References:

  1. https://publications.aap.org/pediatrics/article/142/6/e20181235/76867/The-Public-Health-Impact-of-Parent-Reported?autologincheck=redirected?nfToken=00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000

  2. https://microbiomejournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40168-022-01322-y