Food Allergy Living Blog




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Everything You Need to Know About Neocate Junior with Prebiotics

Posted 7.30.14 | Nutrition Specialist

At Nutricia we are dedicated to providing families and caregivers with products that offer the most nutritional while managing their little ones' food allergies. We know that many of you often have questions about the Neocate family of products, so we've created videos explaining each of the products' ingredients and nutritional value.

Below is our first video on Neocate Junior with Prebiotics. Click the image to play the video.

 

To learn more about Neocate Junior with Prebiotics please visit the following links:

If you have questions feel free to give our medical team a call at 1-800-365-7354. You can also follow us on Twitter @Neocate or like our Facebook page Facebook.com/Neocate.


10 Tips to Allergy Friendly Menu Planning

Posted 7.29.14 | Nutrition Specialist

Today's guest blog comes from Ellie Sears. Ellie is a wife of 12 years and a stay-at-home-mom to a beautiful three year old girl.  Ellie and her daughter both have food allergies.  Ellie enjoys homemaking and trying new food allergy friendly recipes. She stays active in advocating for food allergy awareness through her blog and in her hometown.  Ellie blogs about life with food allergies at blessedlittlefamily.wordpress.com.

What's for dinner tonight?

A year ago, I could not have answered that question.  We ate out a lot and would bring something "safe" for SG, our then two year old who is allergic to dairy and eggs.  It became very expensive.  I also became hesitant to exposing SG to allergens in restaurants as she sometimes broke out in hives from restaurants even though we brought her own food, her own booster seat, wiped everything down, and she had her own plastic mat for food.

But planning dinner and cooking every night.  That seemed insurmountable. Then I remembered reading something that suggested for anything to become a habit, I must do it every day for a month.  A month of cooking and no eating out?!?!  It seemed impossible but I decided to give it a try.

After a month, I was successful (mostly!).  So I kept on.  And on.  And I'm still doing it!

Not a big menu planner?  Does it seem overwhelming?  Start with planning a few days of meals for the week.  Once you accomplish that, try planning an entire week.  Work your way up from there.  You can do it!

Here are some tips to menu planning and stretching your grocery budget at the same time.  These are all things I do:

1. Look for sales and couponed meat.  My local grocery store periodically puts chicken drumsticks and chicken thighs as low as 69 cents a pound and the chicken breasts as low as $1.69 a pound.  Another grocery store discounts its meat with up to $3.00 off each package on the day before the sell by date.  I take advantage of these deals and buy as much meat as my budget allows.  I store the meat in freezer bags, as that takes up less space.  It's important to always label and date the meat.

2. Prep the meat before it goes in the freezer.  Sometimes I have time for this.  Sometimes I don't.  I always appreciate it when I defrost the meat and I've already trimmed it and it's ready to go.  Taking steps beforehand saves time later.  I try to always have some cooked and seasoned ground beef portioned in our freezer.  It makes spaghetti or taco night a breeze!

3. Menu plan around meat in the freezer.  I make a list of all of my meats and plan my menus around that.  It's a great way to save money in the grocery budget and get organized!

4. Vary the menu.  I try not to have too many meals back to back with the same protein.  I like to also make a few meatless meals a month.

5. Repurpose leftovers.  I make a delicious pork tenderloin in the slow cooker.  We eat the pork one night with side dishes.  The next night it gets repurposed into burritos, tacos, nachos, or a barbecue sandwich.  The family gets variety and I get away with only cooking one protein for two meals.  It's a win-win!

6. Use dried beans.  Soaking and cooking beans is beneficial in so many ways.  It takes time, but it saves money.  One bag yields a lot of beans.  It is much cheaper than canned beans.  The beans are perfect for meatless meals in the menu.  (Nachos, rice and beans, soups, meatless taco bake, etc.)

7. Keep frozen vegetables in the freezer.  Nights when I'm plain exhausted, steam in the bag frozen broccoli florets save the day.  Frozen or fresh vegetables are mainstays in our diet.

8. Use the internet.  I've found some great blogs and new recipes online.  Pinterest is my go to for finding and organizing allergy friendly recipes.

9. Try new recipes.  Know that some recipes (especially ones that are adapted because of food allergies) might fail.  In that case, laugh, enjoy a sandwich for dinner, and keep trying.  I've had my share of cooking failures.  I've had more successes, though, and that's the important part.

10. Make a list of favorite recipes.  When planning, refer to this list.  Plan a few favorites and pencil in some of those new recipes that were pinned on Pinterest.  Add new successful recipes to the favorites list.  After a few weeks, the list will be longer and it will be easier to plan a varied menu with all of these recipes right at your fingertips.  This works well for me.

I do every single one of these steps and it saves us time and money.  Living with food allergies can be expensive and stressful.  Meal planning doesn't have to be either.

Do you menu plan? Please share your tips below.

 

 


Money Saving Tips for Grocery Shopping with Food Allergies

Posted 7.23.14 | Christine Graham-Garo

We all know the cost of food is not going down any time soon. Costs can go up so suddenly that it can catch you off  guard financially.  I came across this article from Yahoo Finance which had 8 steps to help soften the costs of food allergy friendly foods. A few of the tips were to use loyalty programs which can help the grocer track your purchase habits and send out targeted coupons. If you buy allergy friendly foods, most likely you will get allergy friendly coupons. Checking websites for coupons can be helpful too. Websites such as Allergy Free and Food Allergies…on a budget offer coupons on their site for you to download.  Another tip to save on grocery costs is to choose more fresh products such as fruits and vegetables. You could save lots of money by buying fresh. In order to minimize spoilage, you can freeze berries before they turn bad and use them in a shake for a nutritiously rich snack.

Another resource I found and thought was really interesting to listen to was this free webinar from Kids with Food Allergies.  Sarah Roe, also known as the Money Saving Queen, gives a very personable 1 hour webinar on how to save while grocery shopping with food allergies. It’s very practical and she gives so many tips, you can utilize at least one she shares to save some money.

What tactics have you used to help save money on food?

We hope this helps!

-Christine


What You Need to Know About Neocate Splash, Unflavored

Posted 7.22.14 | Nutrition Specialist

Last week we announced the launch of Neocate Splash, Unflavored and we hope that you are excited about the unveiling of this new product as we are. Our team understands that you and your families may have questions about Neocate Splash, Unflavored so, we wanted to give you a closer look at our newest product offering.

Here is what you need to know about Neocate Splash, Unflavored:

What is Neocate® Splash, Unflavored?
Neocate Splash, Unflavored is a hypoallergenic, amino acid-based, ready-to-drink product designed specifically to meet the nutritional needs of individuals over one year of age. It is unflavored with a mild taste and can be given in a tube feeding or consumed orally. Neocate Splash, Unflavored is gluten- and casein-free, has no soy oil, and provides 30 calories per fluid ounce. Neocate Splash, Unflavored is indicated for use in the dietary management of individuals with cow and soy milk allergy, multiple food protein intolerance, eosinophilic esophagitis, short bowel syndrome, and other conditions of gastrointestinal tract impairment and malabsorption requiring an elemental diet (e.g.gastroesophageal reflux, enterocolitis, and Crohn’s disease). Neocate Splash, Unflavored is intended for use under medical supervision. 

 
Why isn’t this product called E028 like the other Splash products?
Neocate Splash, Unflavored has a nutritional formulation that is based on Neocate® Junior, Unflavored and comes in different packaging from E028 Splash. With the launch of this new product we simplified the name.
 
I already use Neocate Junior for tube feeding– Can I use Neocate Splash, Unflavored too?
Ask your healthcare team for guidance. Neocate Splash, Unflavored is ideal for on-the-go tube feeds, as it does not require refrigeration (if unopened) or mixing. The drink box is easy to open and pour, which is great when you’re away from home. Neocate Splash, Unflavored can be used for tube feeds given by bolus, gravity, or with a pump and it has a mild, pleasant taste, which may be helpful for tube-fed individuals who experience reflux or who are ready to introduce
formula orally.
 
Those who already use Neocate Junior, Unflavored might also like to have Neocate Splash, Unflavored on hand for tube feeds away from home, when a ready-to-pour product would be more convenient.
 
How does Neocate Splash, Unflavored compare to Neocate Junior, Unflavored?
The nutritional profile of Neocate Splash, Unflavored is based on Neocate Junior, Unflavored – both are nutritionally complete. For most children, both will meet 100% of vitamin and mineral recommendations when consumed as a sole source of energy. For guidance on how much Neocate Splash, Unflavored your child needs to meet her/his nutritional goals, contact your healthcare team.
 
The amounts of carbohydrate, fat, amino acids, vitamins and minerals in Neocate Splash, Unflavored are very similar to those in Neocate Junior, Unflavored: most are identical or within 2%, caloriefor-calorie. The full nutritional profile is available on Neocate.com.
 
Is Neocate Splash, Unflavored nutritionally complete for adults?
Like Neocate Junior, it will meet 100% of most, if not all, vitamin and mineral recommendations for teenagers and adults, depending on energy needs. For guidance on how much Neocate Splash, Unflavored would meet nutritional goals, please contact your healthcare team.
 
What does Neocate Splash, Unflavored taste like?
Neocate Splash, Unflavored has a mild, pleasant taste. Many tasters are surprised that this is an unflavored amino acid-based product. It is slightly sweet compared to Neocate Junior, Unflavored, as some of the carbohydrate is sucrose. Some tasters describe it as having caramel flavor notes, and some perceive it as slightly creamy, though no ingredients used in the product are derived from dairy. No artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners are used.
 
How do I transition my child to Neocate Splash, Unflavored from another product?
When the transition to a new formula involves a change in flavor or nutritional differences, some parents and clinicians may prefer to transition over the course of a few days. You should contact your child’s pediatrician or healthcare provider to discuss this transition. We have provided helpful guidance for this on www.neocate.com/help-for-parents/guides/download-guides. As with all medical foods,Neocate Splash, Unflavored should be used under medical supervision.
 
Can I get a sample?
We can provide samples of this product to your healthcare team. It is available for purchase at Neocate.com, as well as also available through a variety of channels, such as a pharmacy or medical supplier. Contact your healthcare team for other options.
 
How does this product compare to E028 Splash?
E028 Splash and Neocate Splash are different products that have similar names. E028 Splash is commonly used as a nutritional supplement in food elimination diets. Neocate Splash, Unflavored has a nutritional profile based on Neocate Junior, Unflavored. This means it has higher levels of vitamins, minerals, protein and fat than E028 Splash, and a lower amount of carbohydrate and lower osmolality. The main sources of fat, carbohydrate, and amino acids are the same between all Splash products.
 
The packaging for Neocate Splash, Unflavored is a sleeker design with modern graphics. It has a peelable opening with an optional straw. Both products contain 8 fluid ounces of formula providing 237 calories, and come in a case of 27 drink boxes.
 
Are you making any changes to E028 Splash products?
At this time we have no plans to make any changes to any of the flavored E028 Splash products or packaging and they will remain available.
Neocate Splash, Unflavored is a new product - it is not replacing any other product.
 
What is the price of Neocate Splash, Unflavored? How does its cost compare to E028 Splash and Neocate Junior?
(As of July 2014) The online cost of Neocate Splash, Unflavored at Neocate.com is identical to E028 Splash – both are
$132 per case of 27 drink boxes. This is less than 2% more than Neocate Junior, Unflavored, caloriefor-calorie. We offer free ground shipping and a 5% discount for automatic reordering on Neocate.com.
 
What is the hang time for this product?
Hang time refers to the use of the product in tube feeding (“hang” because the feeding bag often hangs on an IV pole). This refers to the amount of time a formula can safely remain at room temperature once opened. We recommend a hang time for Neocate Splash, Unflavored not to exceed four hours. Clean handling techniques should be used in preparing tube feedings to help avoid contamination during preparation and delivery. Talk to your healthcare team about clean handling techniques and how Neocate Splash, Unflavored can be used in your tube feeding regimen.
 
If you have any further questions, or would like more information on Neocate Splash, Unflavored Our team of Nutrition Specialists is more than happy to help. Please contact them at 1-800-NEOCATE (Monday – Friday, 8:30 am – 5:00 pm EST).

New Product Announcement: Neocate Splash, Unflavored

Posted 7.15.14 | Nutrition Specialist

We are very excited to announce the launch of NEW Neocate Splash, Unflavored. This great new product is available in the United States starting July of 2014! Neocate Splash, Unflavored is a hypoallergenic, nutritionally complete, amino acid based, ready-to-feed formula for individuals over the age of one year. At Nutricia North America, we work hard to make sure that your child receives the best possible nutritional support. Towards this goal we introduce new products to provide your family with great options based on the latest medical and scientific knowledge.

This great new product is indicated for the dietary management of cow and soy milk allergy, multiple food protein intolerance, eosinophilic esophagitis, short bowel syndrome, malabsorption, and other medical conditions for which an amino acid-based diet is required. Neocate Splash, Unflavored is a NEW addition to our Neocate family of products. This great new ready-to-feed option is differentiated from our E028 Splash products, not only by its slightly different name, but also by its formulation and packaging, which incorporates age neutral graphics into a sleek drink box design. Neocate Splash, Unflavored has a unique nutrient profile, based on that of Neocate Junior, to provide complete nutritional support.

For customers who are currently using our flavored E028 Splash products, please be assured these products will remain available and unchanged. Here are several key features of the NEW Neocate Splash, Unflavored:

• Nutritionally complete
• For oral or tube feeding
• Peel away opening simplifies pouring, optional straw
• No mixing required
• No artificial sweeteners, flavors, or colors
• Flexible, unflavored base
• Gluten- and casein-free
 
Nutricia remains committed to bringing you the best clinical nutrition products. For more information on Neocate Splash, Unflavored and our Neocate family of amino acid-based medical foods, please visit www.neocate.com or call our Customer Service Department toll-free at 1-800-365-7354, Monday - Friday, 8:30 am - 7:00 pm EST.
 
Sincerely,
The Neocate Team
 

How to Mix Neocate Nutra

Posted 7.10.14 | Nutrition Specialist

Rob is back with another mixing video tutorial. In the latest installation, he's showing us how to mix Neocate Nutra.

Click the image below to watch the easy-to-follow tutorial.

 

To learn more about Neocate Nutra follow these links:

Don't forget to follow us on Twitter @Neocate and to like our Facebook page www.facebook.com/neocate for the latest news and updates on Neocate.


How We Handled Outgrowing Allergies

Posted 7.8.14 | Nutrition Specialist

This is a guest post from Jamie Kabourek. Jamie Kabourek received her BS in Human Resources and Family Science at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln and obtained her Masters in Human Nutrition from the University of Kansas Medical  Center. She has worked exclusively with the Food Allergy Research and Resource Program (FARRP) which takes a comprehensive approach to provide the food industry with credible information, expert opinions, tools and services relating to  allergenic foods. For over 13 years she has been providing outreach and education to food industry manufacturers, health professionals and consumers. Over the last five years she has been co-manager of her middle son’s food allergies (IRONY) and is surrounded by her all-boy family: husband Chris, sons Aidan, Sam and Charlie and wonder dog Chipper.

Our son Sam has had food allergies since he was 15 months old. I say HAD because his last blood test found no specific IgE antibodies to egg or peanut. He also passed oral food challenges to both egg and peanut - Oh happy days!! But in reality, our family has another learning curve, albeit a much smaller one than complete allergen avoidance for the past 4½ years. Now we are realizing that we can have “brinner” (breakfast for dinner), real birthday cake, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and Chinese food!

I had to explain to Sam why he no longer needed to identify these foods as something harmful. I did my best kindergarten teaching and told him that his body decided that those foods are no longer a big deal… his immune system got tougher and stronger so that peanuts and eggs no longer make him sick. I told him that, although he had recently learned to spell egg, he no longer has to search for it in ingredient lists. Now a few months after his challenges we still discuss his food allergy resolution. I have tried to:

- Encourage Sam to ask questions.

                - Remind him that foods with his ex-allergens no longer make him sick.

- Explain that he no longer needs an Epi-Pen – it does not need to go places with us.

- Encourage trying new foods and restaurants, but without forcing foods with his ex-allergens. (Children that have a former food allergy may just not enjoy eating that food.)

                - Encourage Sam to play with food. Kids can help in the kitchen with reckless abandon!

As summer starts up I’m reflecting on the impact that food allergies had on our family and on Sam in particular. Food allergies taught us vigilance out of necessity, to be prepared, and ways to communicate with different types of people. I also realize that we can apply some of these lessons to other areas of life. I hope that having had a food allergy will help my son to be more empathetic and understanding to those perceived differently. I also hope he will be a friend to a child on the playground that someone else made fun of, or understand why a classmate who is allergic to peanuts has to sit at the peanut-free table at lunchtime, and that it’s not a big deal.

Perhaps someday I’ll stop scrutinizing each and every ingredient label at the grocery store. My husband won’t have to re-read the ingredient statement to make sure that something didn’t get overlooked in the harried trip to the grocery store between piano lessons and haircuts. My oldest son will not have to ask the neighbor if the ice cream sandwich she is giving the kids contains eggs or peanuts. Health history forms will need to be edited at the doctor and dentist’s offices, but finally my son will not have to be vigilant in his food allergy management heading into the first grade. Relief, freedom, opportunity – these are some of the things we are feeling. But I still feel the anxiety, fear, and nervousness that accompany a child with food allergies; it is lessening, but it’s still there.

-Jamie Kabourek, MS, RD

Nutricia North America does not own or promote Epi-Pen


Allergy-Friendly Fourth of July Recipe Ideas

Posted 7.3.14 | Mallory West

Like most holidays, fourth of July celebrations involve a variety of tasty foods. When your little one has food allergies, it can be difficult to find tasty snacks that are allergy-friendly and can be enjoyed outside amidst the festivities.  For today’s post, we’ve collected some allergy-friendly recipes that your kiddo will love!

Please note that these recipes are allergy-friendly (that is, free of the top 8) but not necessarily allergy-free so please look over the ingredients carefully and check with your child’s health care provider if you are unsure if it’s safe for your child.

What’s more American than cornbread? The FARE blog recently posted this Fourth of July Western Cornbread recipe- it looks delicious! (and you could reduce or eliminate the chili powder for young kids)

And speaking of corn, grilled corn-on-the-cob is hard to beat! This recipe just calls for corn and olive oil, but if olive oil is off limits, you could always skip it or replace it with another vegetable oil.

The FARE blog posted these tasty Frozen Recipes for the Fourth of July.

Frozen drinks are refreshing for beach days and BBQs. Here are some of our favorite frozen recipe ideas. To really set the summer vibe, serve these in a beachy cup, use a fun straw and maybe even top it with one of those cute little drink umbrellas to make it extra special.

Popsicles are another refreshing treat on hot days. With popsicle molds, you can make popsicles with just about anything. Many parents make them with E028 Splash or Neocate Junior blended with a favorite fruit. You can also try our Neocate Nutra Popsicle recipes.

If your party animal can’t bear to break for a meal, a cooler with a few boxes of E028 Splash might come in handy on the beach, at the parade or at the firework show!

We hope your family has a fun and safe 4th of July!

-Mallory


Fourth of July BBQs + Food Allergies

Posted 7.2.14 | Rob McCandlish, RD


The 4th of July is just a few days away! Nothing is more American than a barbecue on the fourth. Whether you're planning to celebrate with a picnic at home with family, at a neighbor's house, or with a large group, it's important to take steps to protect little ones with food allergies. Here’s a collection of blogs that might help you as you prepare to celebrate the Fourth of July safely!


Planning to celebrate away from home or with others? Make sure to read up on our post on picnics, cookouts and trips to the beach. You can find some related tips in the post we shared for holiday parties and get-togethers if you’ll be visiting friends or relatives. These tips can be especially helpful if your little one is going to be out of your sight around tables full of potluck foods that could be allergenic.


Looking for some great “safe” recipe ideas? This past post for the Fourth includes recipes that follow the red, white and blue theme! Another idea if your little one has a limited diet would be to mix some pureed blueberries, strawberries, or another red or blue fruit with her/his Neocate formula or Neocate Nutra for a holiday-themed meal. And if you think there’s nothing more American than apple pie and ice cream before the fireworks, make sure everyone is included with this great recipe for dairy-free ice cream that includes Neocate Nutra and applesauce.


Whenever you’re travelling away from home for more than a day or two, it’s good to be prepared for any scenario. Revisit these tips on travelling with allergies and travelling with Neocate to make sure your checklist is complete.


What tips do you have to keep Independence Day worry-free?

- Rob

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Neocate Infant DHA/ARA Now Kosher

Posted 6.24.14 | Rob McCandlish, RD


For years families and clergy within the Jewish faith have contacted us with questions about whether or not Neocate products are kosher. We are happy to report that Neocate Infant DHA/ARA is now certified Kosher Pareve Non-Passover.  

Kosher
The term kosher indicates that a food is in accordance with Jewish dietary law, or the laws of kashrut. “Kashrut” refers the body of Jewish law that deals with which foods may or may not be consumed and how those foods are prepared and eaten. You can read more about kosher and Jewish dietary laws here.


KLBD and Neocate Infant
To obtain kosher certification we had an outside organization, the Kashrut Division of the London Beth Din (KLBD), assess Neocate Infant DHA/ARA. KLBD Kosher Certification is a leading global kosher certification agency that has been operating across six continents for more than a century. Their rabbis, food technologists and food chemists work as certification partners, along with representatives and agents in 60 countries worldwide. KLBD reviewed the ingredients in Neocate Infant DHA/ARA and our suppliers and sent an expert to inspect the entire manufacturing process in the United Kingdom, and gave their approval that Neocate Infant DHA/ARA is kosher. Cans of Neocate Infant DHA/ARA with the KLBD logo, certifying the product is kosher, have been available since early June.

To be a bit more specific, Neocate Infant DHA/ARA is certified Kosher Pareve non-Passover. “Pareve” means there is nothing derived from milk or meat used in the product or on the manufacturing equipment. Neocate Infant DHA/ARA is NOT manufactured on shared equipment; in fact it is the only amino acid-based infant formula in North America that’s made in a 100% dairy-free facility. Families that keep kosher can serve Neocate Infant DHA/ARA to their children regardless of whether they are having a dairy or meat meal. 

(Neocate Infant DHA/ARA has not been certified as acceptable for use during the Passover holiday, so it is non-Passover.  It is not unusual for a kosher food item to not have Kosher for Passover certification as well; many Kosher items are non-Passover.)

Other Neocate Products
At this time we have not received kosher certification for any other Neocate products. The other Neocate powdered products are all made with similar ingredients from the same suppliers and in the same facility, but we have not sought certification for them at this time.

We know that some of our customers will be happy to see the KLBD logo on Neocate Infant DHA/ARA. Are you one of those customers, and how important is this to you?

Rob

Image adapted from Source



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About Us

Food Allergy Living is a resource for parents of children with food allergies, brought to you by Nutricia, the makers of Neocate. For more in-depth information about our purpose & authors, see our About Food Allergy Living page.