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That Time I Was Diagnosed With A Food Allergy |
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That Time I Was Diagnosed With A Food Allergy


September 25, 2013 by BettyCupcakes

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Life gets in the way sometimes.  Casserole dishes get dropped, toddlers throw tantrums, dinner gets burned.  Daily life is pretty dramatic sometimes and as a mom, you forget to pay attention to your own happiness and health.

And then you get diagnosed with a food allergy.

Lame, right?

Turns out that at the ripe old age of 29, I’m no longer allowed to eat shellfish. I shouldn’t be surprised because I am allergic to every other thing: trees, mold, grass, stuffed animals, books, etc.  As a kid, all my stuffed animals had to live in a glassed-in bookshelf.  *wah wah*

It started over a year ago.  I  had something at a baby shower that made my mouth go a bit numb and my lips swelled.  Never found out what it was, but I’m guessing it was in the shellfish family.  Maybe a dip or quiche- who knows?  A few Benadryl later and I was fine.

About six months later.  My husband made a seafood stew with crab and shrimp.  My hands and arms started itching.  More Benadryl.

The last straw was the lobster roll I ate at a baptism in August.  More itching, but all over, not just my hands.  Benadryl still stopped the reaction, and I finally put all the pieces together.  At my annual allergist appointment today, she confirmed my suspicions.  If you need a recommendation and you’re on the South Shore of Massachusetts, e-mail me.  She is awesome.

According to, shrimp, crab, lobster, clams, mussels, oysters and scallops are all shellfish.  Guess I’ll be a cheap date at the seafood buffet from now on.

Shellfish Allergy |


As a food blogger, this is kind of a bummer.  Now there’s an entire menu that I won’t be able to enjoy, recipes I can’t make, labels to check, waiters to annoy.

Obviously, abstaining from shellfish is far better than suffering from a serious allergic reaction.  I’ll be toting an EpiPen with me from now, as well as my inhaler.  Asthma and food allergies can be a really bad combination.  I’m grateful that so far I’ve only been itchy- I know it could be so much worse.

If I find out any usual information about food allergies, I’ll be sure and share them hear. If you have any tips or tricks about dealing with them, feel free to share!

Do you have any food allergies?

How do you handle them?

  • Joy says:

    Welcome to your new fancy food life! According to a recent Huff Post article food allergies are for the elite. I’ve been involuntarily gluten free for nearly 4 years & much more creative with my cuisine than I used to be.

    I try not to be the annoying chick at the restaurant but most waiters are very accommodating. My main tip would be to check the menu in advance from home anytime that you can.

    • BettyCupcakes says:

      Thanks Joyce! I definitely do feel special now, though I’m pretty sure New England is the WORST place to have a shellfish allergy.

  • Dana says:

    My brother-in-law is also allergic to shellfish, and it progressed like yours. Started with shrimp, then crab, and now all of it. New England may be the worst place for a shellfish allergy, but Baltimore is not much better – crabs are everywhere! My BIL is super cautious in Asian restaurants, and when he was in Hong Kong he could barely eat anything.

    • BettyCupcakes says:

      Thanks for reminding me about chinese restaurants! Hadn’t even thought of the dangers that lurk there. And I love Chinese!

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