Hi Everybody! I am 37 years old and have had a severe allergy to peanuts since I was 3. I majored in Biology and Chemistry at University and I consider myself an expert about peanut allergy. I even have a blog about this:
@13 David_in_Shoreline You are absolutely correct! Highly refined oils aren't supposed to contain the protein! But as someone who has a Level 5(out of 6)peanut allergy, I avoid them like the plague. I used to be able to eat peanut oil with reckless abandon. Then in my 30's my auto-immune food allergies somehow became 'thermonuclear'(that's how the scientists I donate my blood and plasma to describe my allergy). Peanut oil that I could once eat gave me a disgusting full-body rash. Moisturizing my skin with coconut oil manufactured in the same facility as peanut OIL causes extreme localized eczema, and tiny itchy bubbles in the skin and an itchy rash kind of like a mosquito bite. Didn't use to happen. Happens now. So death by peanut oil is plausible to me. The peanut allergic have freaky immune systems science can't currently cure and do not completely understand at this point in the game. And I am never more than 90 seconds away from my Epipens. Ever. Epipens are no sure guarantee of survival, in 2013 Natalie Georgi died after being injected with 3 Epipens. Anaphylactic shock is a painful, violent, and unpredictable reaction. My next reaction may be too severe for even the Epipen to reverse. My last reaction required 3 Epipens.
I used to eat Tim's Cascade Potato Chips fried in good old peanut oil. I can't anymore. The immune system of a peanut allergic individual is a fickle constantly re-calibrating bitch goddess.
You are a genius. I should write a blog post chastizing the fakers. Because people who claim they have a food allergy when they actually don't cause survival problems for people like me with real food allergies.
You speak of constant vigilance about food. Are you constantly vigilant about food? People get hungry. Yesterday I was at a bar and I did not give the wait staff the 3rd degree about food allergies/cross contamination/etc. I could have died. We are only human. Peanut allergic people get low blood sugar, get tired, weak, and hungry and make mistakes like anyone else. I try to be as paranoid, and vigilant as possible, but I sometimes fuck this up, I'm not perfect. Have some compassion. Nobody deserves to die. I don't eat at 80% of restaurants because of this issue. Your hypothetical Bob example was cruel. Do you make fun of people who are developmentally disabled and people in wheelchairs too? Because my allergy is not a choice. Every time I eat food I face death, and I found your comment extremely offensive.
I don't eat out very often because my peanut allergy will kill me. So Chinese, 90% of Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian, 60% of Mexican, etc of all restaurants are off limits to me. It sucks when people tell me about how delicious Dim Sum is because I have never been able to consume it. I wish I could eat like a normal human being but I can't.