Extremely restrictive vegetarian diet due to allergies? Anyone else dealing with this?

Asked: Extremely restrictive vegetarian diet due to allergies? Anyone else dealing with this?

I realize this is going to be so specific as to warrant few answers besides the people who want to call me a nut, but here goes: Has anyone with severe allergies (garlic,onion, multiple fruits/veggies, peanuts) successfully pulled off a gluten/casein-free diet as well?

I have been vegetarian for 10 years, and was vegan before the kids. My kids, who have multiple allergies (mealtimes are more and more becoming a struggle) are showing signs of being intolerant of gluten and/or casein in a pretty serious way; severe eczema, and symptoms of ‘brain allergy’ — these symptoms are pretty prominent in my eldest. Allergy tests have revealed nothing beneficial to their conditions, but these seem to be common undiagnosed allergens in kids who have these types of symptoms, so it’s something I feel we should explore.

Problem is, this is further complicated by their picky phase they are in: They don’t like eggs or beans, and no matter how I prepare (or attempt to hide) these ingredients they gag as if I’d served them poison. I don’t know if they could eat meat, having thus far been vegetarian, I think they’d understandably balk at that too. And, honestly, since my reasons aren’t simply ethical (I don’t believe most meat is even safe to eat) this makes this an ever trickier decision. They do like nuts, but a person can’t survive on a few select nuts (peanuts, of course, excluded) and a few select grains — quinoa’s great, but not for every meal.

What do vegetarians with severe allergies do? Do they give up? Do they see a dietician? I’m really struggling with this concept of having to do a rigid elimination diet for a few months — and make sure their health in not jeopardized — when our diets are already so restricted by allergies and finickiness.

Any positive advise would be appreciated. Slamming me, on the other hand, is not.


barbara Answered:
Have you tried any of the meat substitutes like Quorn or Boca? Don’t know if the allergies include fungi but Quorn is pretty good although it does contain egg white I believe. Also a few grain suggestions-amaranth, buckwheat, millet, teff and of course good old rice. Do they have the same aversion to chickpeas as other beans? Hummus may be an option. Have you tried any of the tofu dairy subs like tofutti cream cheese or some of the vegan cheeses?
Finally, I ran across a website called Ceciliasmarket.com that offered guides to shopping for gluten/casein free diets for sale.
Good luck to you, you clearly need it.

saneyaya Answered:
I am vegan w. intolerance to gluten and dairy, and recently corn. Millet and brown rice are my best grains. You can get by w. just your children’s favourite fruits and veggies, and try grinding the nuts they tolerate in a food processor until very fine. You can add them to a smoothie this way. Try almond milk with it. Will they eat hummus w. brown rice cakes? Can you blend veggies into a tomato sauce? I like potatoes and peas in tomato sauce, since the peas are a legume.
Books I rely on are “The Gluten-free Vegan” by Susan O’Brien, and “The Living Gluten-free Anwer Book” by Suzanne Rowland. I own a Vitamax blender and it is really helpful in liquifying ingredients.
I know how difficult this is w. children, as I have 2 grandchildren w. dietary and medicinal intolerances.

Crazy Horse Answered:
I have read over and over that picky children grow just fine with what they do eat and most doctors don’t really force kids to eat what they don’t like.You can try tofu smoothies with fruit for them.Almond milk is really good, too.Try letting them make their own hummus, too.

My step daughter is allergic to dairy and she lived with us for (forever it seemed) a long time.As an adult, she was very easy to cook for but I can’t imagine life with her as a child.Non dairy creamer was a staple in the house, so I heard.

I wouldn’t go for adding meat to your diet as they aren’t used to it and it could make them sick.Every time I go to the store, I see more gluten free foods.Rice crispies is the latest I tried.

Good Luck!

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