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Thread: Food allergies

  1. #1
    Administrator Starting to feel at home... admin's Avatar
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    Question Food allergies

    Hi everybody!

    I simply wanted to bring up food allergies.

    How do you deal with them on a daily basis?
    Do you feel it sometimes limits the meals you can serve children?
    Is it ever okay to ask parents to make their own meals in case of severe or multiple allergies?

  2. #2
    Expansive... Play and Learn's Avatar
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    In the past when I worked at daycare centers, we accomidated children with allergies. While working as a nanny, I had 2 out of 3 children who had severe allergies.

    As a childcare provider in my own home, I do not have a nut-free home, as I'm not telling my husband he cannot have peanut butter.

  3. #3
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    I too do not offer a peanut free home. My heart goes out to families that have to deal with this on a daily basis especially trusting your child's life in the hands of others whether it be a home daycare, daycare center or your child's school.
    Home is the one place my children can eat what they want without reading labels and yes peanut butter is one of our favorites even our dog Shadow loves it.
    The hard part is if you already have a child in your daycare and then they develop the allergy. That happened to me once.....little Scott (he was so cute!!) but likely he only came in the afternoon so his mom sent his snack and I made sure we had fruit for afternoon snack.
    Love: Mrs. Laurie

  4. #4
    Euphoric !
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    I had a little girl in care for over 2 years with a peanut and tree nut allergy. Every where we travelled I had to carry her epi pen but thank goodness I never had to use it. I had to read every label, but I mostly cook from scratch. I know a daycare provider who has to eat a gluten free diet and that's what she has to cook for all of her daycare children for the sake of her own health. She spends a fortune on food in order to do that though.

  5. #5
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    Food Allergies

    I'm not entirely sure why someone would need to cook gluten free products for all her children because of their allergy. I wasn't aware that you could have a reaction from touching the food I thought it was just from consuming it. Its not like the peanut allergy. Both my husband and myself have gluten intolerances which are quite substantial but not an allergy as such so I can only imagine this person must have some major problems and that must be hard.

    I have had a child with a severe allergy to dairy who required epi-pens...their mother sent alternative milk and yogurts in, and I cook all my meals from scratch so this never presented a problem. I have a child now who is allergic to nuts and even his parents aren't a nut free home. They keep all nuts well out of his way and if they eat them they wash their hands well afterwards. I do the same here and have never had a problem. Also I have children who are allergic to cream cheese and salmon. I make my menu's on a 3 week rotation so I can make everything weeks in advance and freeze it and I just take these things in to account. I have recently had an inquiry from a parent whose child has peanut and wheat allergies. I have said I will charge a slightly higher daily rate to cover the cost of gluten free products and that I will cook this for him. It's no big deal to me as I am wheat and gluten free to so I know a lot of products out their but I will just cook and freeze portions of brown rice and rice pasta so when we have a meal this child will be unaware that they are eating any different from the other children.

  6. #6
    Expansive... Play and Learn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bright sparks View Post
    I'm not entirely sure why someone would need to cook gluten free products for all her children because of their allergy. I wasn't aware that you could have a reaction from touching the food I thought it was just from consuming it. Its not like the peanut allergy.
    I was going for nanny interviews a couple of years back, and the mother had severe gluten allergies, so I couldn't bring in any outside food, just incase I forgot to clean the counter. Lets just say I didn't take the job!

  7. #7
    Shy
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    My 8 year old daughter has a peanut allergy, so our home is 100% peanut/nut free. As a daycare provider I will take kids with peanut allergies since I have experience with that allergy, and l tell all parents not to feed their kids peanut butter before coming. I don't think I would be able to care for kids with other allergies since it is hard enough dealing with the peanut allergy.

  8. #8
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    I had a little girl who was severely lactose intolerant. Her mother brought her soy and rice milk as well as soy cheese , yogurt etc. I did order from a caterer, so sometimes I had to prepare her a separate meal when there were dairy products in the meal.
    However I have to admit that I would not be comfortable caring for a child that has life threatening allergies. We eat a lot of peanut butter, fish etc and I also agree with "play and lean". There is no way I could tell my spouse to give up peanut butter lol

  9. #9
    Euphoric !
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    For the most part if I have a child with an allergy I just make something different for that child and as much as possible make foods that everyone can eat. I had a child with a rice, carrot and dairy allergy. That was very difficult because rice flour is used in a lot of commercial baking products from cereals to pancake mix to crackers. I was limited to only one kind of chicken nugget that didn't have dairy or rice in the breading. The worst was wanting to use leftovers that I had made for my own family the night before and then having to come up with something equivalent for her. Since she moved on to a preschool/daycare the mom has to supply her meals because the allergy is just too time consuming and hard to deal with given the realities of foods available - now she thanks me for my efforts whereas while I had the child she just assumed that was my job.

  10. #10
    Shy
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    Personally I don't provide care for children with peanut allergies. My children are very fortunate to not have any allergies to anything. I have had to turn down jobs when it came to peanut allergies. My husband refuses to let go of the peanut butter. lol. I don't think I would have any problem with a mild milk allergy or intolerance. But I too would ask parents to provide soy or the alternatives. the only other way i could take them would be to charge more to purchase these items.

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