Over 50 million americans suffer from some sort of food allergy. They can develop at any stage of life, but are most commonly diagnosed in babies and small children. You can outgrow many of this allergies, but some decide to stick around. Though it is hard to believe, celebrities are counted amongst the 50 million americans. Celebrity food intolerances are no different than yours and mine. Many don't eat that much to begin with, so their food intake becomes even more limited. This applies to men and women. Some of these famous folks have used their ailment to further awareness and help educate anyone who will listen about the dangers surrounding food allergies.
An allergy is what happens when your body treats a substance like a foreign invader. It sends out chemicals to fight against the various substances and these chemicals cause various reactions; some of them can be deadly. This reaction is known as anaphylaxis. Epipens have become so common because they help ward off the effects of these deadly reactions. It is recommended that those with severe allergies carry two of these 'pens' with them at all times, in case the dose in the first isn't enough.
Here are some well known individuals who have learned to adapt their diets accordingly and if you suffer from the same food intolerances, at least now you know that you aren't alone. Unfortunately, it still won't get you on the cover of People Magazine.
It has been reported that Halle Berry's food intolerance is shrimp. This would imply that she has a shellfish allergy. According to Mayoclinic.com this type of allergy is, "an abnormal response by the body's immune system to proteins in certain marine animals." These animals include crab, oyster, lobster, octopus and scallops. Hope she is getting her protein from other sources.
Poor Serena cannot come home after winning Wimbledon and enjoy a good peanut butter sandwich. This world class athlete is a sufferer of one of the most common allergies-the peanut allergy. According to the National Institute of Health, 20 percent of kids who have this allergy tend to outgrow it. But for those that do not, have no fear, an entire "nut-free" movement has been established.
Since this allergy can be deadly, moms have made sure that camps and schools have been deemed "nut free." No snacks or lunches that contain nuts are allowed. Some people are so highly allergic that they cannot even touch the nuts in question. Labels on foods will let you know if those products are made in an environment where nuts are present. That is how sensitive this allergy can be. It can also be deadly, so be very vigilant in keeping those with this allergy safe.
According to sources, celebrity Joshua Jackson suffers from a food intolerance. He has a tree nut allergy. A tree nut is a hard shelled fruit, as opposed to a peanut, which is a legume. In 2011, Jackson was briefly hospitalized for an allergic reaction. One has to assume that he consumed some cashews, pistachios or pine nuts-just a few of the tree nuts out there. There are conflicting reports that he does, indeed, have a peanut allergy, but that hasn't been confirmed or denied. In any event, we wish him well and hope he maintains a healthy and nut-free existence.
Though quite funny as Claire Dunphy on Modern Family, Bowen's stand on childhood food allergies is no laughing matter. Her son Oliver is severely allergic to peanuts and bee stings. And in a tragic comedy, this was discovered when he was stung by a bee, while eating peanut butter. He went into anaphylactic shock and a new voice for those with severe allergies was born. Bowen even narrated and e-book titled The Adventures of Ana and Phyl Axis: The Carnival. She also took part in an initiative that helps educate educators about the dangers of anaphylaxis and what needs to be done in the event of a crisis.
Drew Brees is living proof that you can have food intolerances to almost everything, and still be a Superbowl winning athlete. Brees has sensitivities to wheat, gluten, dairy, eggs and nuts. How does he function? Brees has learned to adapt his diet as best he can-incorporating soy milk and other soy proteins into his daily regimen. He is also a big proponent of coconut and almond milk.But don't worry, Brees is not alone in his food intolerances. His wife, Britanny, suffers along with him. Together, they have learned to work with their limits and teach others what to eat as well.
Wheat, Gluten, Dairy, Eggs and Nuts
Zooey Deschannel is not just a beautiful actress, she also suffers from food intolerances to dairy, eggs and suffers from coeliac disease. This means that the small intestine is hypersensitive to gluten and leads to difficulties digesting food. She is very open about her food issues and hopes that others who suffer the same won't feel isolated. Deschannel is a big proponent of the gluten-free movement and enjoys sharing her recipes and tips for healthier living.
Gluten, Dairy and Eggs
Suze Orman is a financial wizard, but don't order her an omelette. This super smart lady is allergic to eggs. Whites or yolks, the allergy doesn't have a preference, so she stays away from anything egg related. Fortunately, there are plenty of egg-substitutes around to help ease her cravings.
Lionel Richie is allergic to dairy. He has even been known to solve other people's ailments by encouraging them to go dairy-free. A dairy allergy can manifest in ways other than intestinal. It can cause unexplained coughing and excess phlegm. If you have symptoms that you are worried about, and you can't get Mr. Richie on the phone, feel free to consult your doctor.
Clay Aiken, the American Idol runner-up from season two, suffers from many food intolerances. Years ago, he appeared on The Tyra Banks Show and confessed to being allergic to tree-nuts, mushrooms, shellfish, coffee, chocolate and mint. His nut allergy is so severe that he once developed a rash on his hand just by being touch by someone who had previously handled the allergen in question. Fortunately, his other allergies are not as severe.
Nuts, Mushrooms, Shellfish, Coffee, Chocolate...
When Busy Phillips was 20 years old, she started experiencing stomach pains and bloating. She went to the doctor and he couldn't find anything wrong with her. At the suggestion of a friend, she went to an allergist and was put on an elimination diet. Phillips started eating "hypoallergenic" foods, such as fruits and vegetables. After several weeks, she started reintroducing other foods and discovered she was allergic to gluten and soy. Her attitude about her food intolerances is a healthy one-by focusing on what you can eat, it helps takes the focus off of what you cannot eat.
Everybody might love Raymond, but peanuts do not love Ray Romano. Years ago, while attending a pediatric AIDS fundraiser with his family, Romano was rushed to the hospital after eating something with peanuts. As peanut allergies are quite common, he is in good company.
Billy Bob Thornton
Billy Bob Thornton has many talents. Avoiding dairy, wheat, shellfish and eggs has become one of them. Since learning that he has all of these food intolerances, Thornton has learned to eat fresh and healthy; Meat, fruits and vegetables are the main stables of his diet.
Dairy, Wheat, Shellfish and Eggs
Holly Robinson Peete
While trying to multi-task, nurse her son and eat a salad at the same time, a piece of cheese fell into her baby's ear. He was so severely anaphylactic to dairy that his whole ear blew up. It turns out, that each of her children have some sort of food intolerance. Peete has become an outspoken mom on the importance of schools being allergen-free. She also emphasizes the need for schools to be equipped with the proper medical devices needed to keep children alive in the event of an anaphylactic reaction.