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Showing posts from August, 2012

Are Food Allergy Bans Even Protective?

There's been wailing and gnashing of teeth this week because the National Association of School Nurses came out with a new position paper regarding food allergies. (It actually came out in June, but it seems to have just hit most of the chat boards this month.) Many food allergy advocates were disappointed because of the statement about food bans:

Maintaining a healthy environment is essential.  All environments in the school setting require special attention to protect students by limiting allergens or providing areas that are allergen safe (National School Boards Association [NBSA], 2011).   Completely banning nuts or other foods is not recommended as it is 1) not possible to control what other people bring onto the school grounds, and 2) does not provide the allergic student with an environment where he/she can safely learn to navigate a world containing nuts.  When a ban is instituted, parents feel their child will not be exposed to allergens.  A ban can create a false sense of…

Enjoy Supper at SAGE Next Month!

Supper at SAGE is just around the corner!

Join us for a magical evening of food, art and music at SAGE! The 2nd annual benefit dinner for the Edible Corvallis Initiative is Saturday, September 15th.

Supper at SAGE begins in the garden with appetizers by Fireworks, artisan pizzas from our cob oven, and tastings by 2 Towns Ciderhouse, Full Circle Creamery and Red Hat Melons--plus garden tours, music, and an outdoor art gallery featuring local artist Rebecca Waterhouse, whose art appears on the Supper at SAGE posters! A four-course dinner follows, prepared by Chef JC Mersmann of Gathering Together Farm and other local food artisans, with bread by Big River and desserts by First Alternative Co-Op, Le Patissier, New Morning Bakery, and Terminus.   Guests enjoy a complimentary glass of wine from Tyee Wine Cellars, with additional wine available for purchase by the glass or bottle. 

Tickets are $60, and are available through BrownPaperTickets.com or at the Corvallis Environmental Cente…

Why We Don't Use Epinephrine Enough

Sanofi came out with a really cool product today: a credit card-sized epinephrine injector. I've been following the press about the eCue, but this one snuck out of nowhere for me.

It's great. It has step-by-step audio instructions, plus graphics. It seems to be pretty easy to use (just take off the safety cap and inject). It's smaller, so kids  —  especially boys  —  are more likely to carry it, right?

And yet, I doubt it will make a difference.

There are two issues the device fails to address: recognizing anaphylaxis and acting once we see it.

I always hate talking about this topic because it really underlines that I am a slacker mom. We've experienced a lot of reactions in our house. Part of that is because my husband and I were probably a little too lax when my son was young. The rest was because he has a lot of allergies, and very common allergies. It's very, very hard to keep a severely-milk-allergic child safe 100% of the time unless you just never eat out or nev…

Scotland's Mental Health Strategy 2012-2015

A new strategy designed to improve the mental health and wellbeing of everyone in Scotland was launched today.
Click HERE to read the Strategy Document.

The American Health Policy Trap

The American health policy trap: a costly and complicated system that has left a growing minority of Americans without financial protection in sickness but has nonetheless satsfied enough people to make it difficult to change. The key elements of the trap are a system of employer-provided insurance that conceals its true costs from those who benefit from it; targeted government programs that protect groups such as the elderly and veterans, who are well organized and enjoy wide public sympathy and believe that, unlike other claimants, they have earned their benefits; and a financing system that has expanded and enriched the health care industry, creating powerful interests averse to change. Paul Starr, Remedy and Reaction: The Peculiar American Struggle Over Health Care Reform

The Milk-Allergic, Soy-Allergic School Lunch

Well, it's that time of year, folks. The time when our kids start coming home with full lunch boxes, and when asked why they didn't eat their lunch, are heard to mumble one of the following:


"I just wasn't hungry." 
"My lunch is stupid." 
"I hate sandwiches."

Yeah, yeah, just EAT it, you little -

Deep breath.

Since it's only August, I thought I would post another labor of love for all you moms out there who are dreading the next nine months: the comprehensive "What You Can Feed Your Milk-Allergic Child For Lunch" list. Ready?

Protein

Most commercial deli meat (Sarah Lee, Applegate Farms, Boar's Head) is milk free. If they won't eat it on bread, roll it up by itself and wrap in foil.

Try different deli meats! My son loves prosciutto (Trader Joe's has the cheapest), salami (watch the "lactic acid starter culture", though), AmyLu sausages and even bacon (I think Target has the nitrate-free kind).

Swanson chicken in the c…

The Summer Doldrums

I haven't felt much like blogging the last few weeks. Probably the summer doldrums. Perhaps you're familiar with them?

Some of it is the looming inevitability of another school year. Even though my son is starting his senior year, there are still stresses associated with the start of school. I no longer have the worry of food in the classroom, or appropriate accommodations, but the shopping lists does change as we consider school lunches, and inevitably key items are discontinued that made up last year's lunches.

Additionally, there's the running around to get medication letters completed. We had our FAHF-2 check-up at the end of July, and of course I forgot to bring the permission form with me. That means a round of faxing since our high school will not take a blanket letter, even though the dose is exactly the same as last year.

Looking back, I appreciate my husband's role as stay-at-home-dad and school bully much more than I used to. The paperwork alone is staggeri…

Mental Health Network: Service User Event

The Mental Health Network of Greater Glasgow is holding a service user event on the 22nd August 2012 10am-3pm at Annexe Communities, 9a Stewartville Street, Glasgow G11 5PE. This event will seek to establish service user views on services currently provided at Gartnavel Royal Hospital.
To book a place telephone Mental Health Network Office on 0141 550 8417.

Camp Time!

Last week was the "Buzz about Bees" summer camp out at SAGE.  I have to admit I was a bit jealous to see all the kiddos exploring the bee hives, baking tasty honey bread, making beeswax candles and learning about pollinators......it looked like a lot more fun than the weeding and work the interns and I were doing!  In addition to focusing most of the week on bees, they also helped harvest some of the goodies that our buzzing friends collaborated with us to grow!

We have one more camp out at SAGE this summer from Aug 13th - 17th.  "Roots, Shoots & Flowers!" focuses on taste testing and exploring the different part of plants at SAGE during the height of the growing season.  I know I'm definitely going to be jealous watching the kiddos of that camp!  If you're interested in signing your child or young friend up, there are still spots available.  You can register by phone by calling the Corvallis Environmental Center at (541) 753-9211 or you can sign up onl…

The inquiry into the label of schizophrenia

Interesting and challenging to read the testimonies of people with the diagnosis of schizophrenia. Click HERE to go to the Inquiry into the Label of Schizophrenia website.They are due to report in September and we will place a link to that report on this blog.

Poor mental health linked to reduced life expectancy

Read HERE the Welcome Trust Report into the research undertaken by UCL (University College London) and the University of Edinburgh published today in the BMJ.

"Their results reveal that people who experienced symptoms of anxiety or depression had a lower life expectancy than those without any such symptoms. Even people with minor symptoms of mental health problems seemed to have a higher risk of death from several major causes, including cardiovascular disease."