In 2013, Charlotte Muquit did an excellent feature
This is what Charlotte said about herself in her features:
I am a neuro-physio (I treat people with neurological conditions such as stroke, MS or Parkinsons), a full time mum of Zach – and a keen runner.
When Zach was diagnosed with multiple food allergies, my husband and I began the long, difficult and emotional journey of learning to live successfully with food allergies. It has been a struggle at times but filled with the fun of a little boy who is now four and a half.
Before I had a baby, I wouldn’t say I was a cook. I could follow a recipe but didn’t spend my time cooking. Anyway, I had a baby and I thought, probably like some other parents, that I would learn to cook as the baby needed me to and would follow a weaning book, which told me what to do step by step. I liked the idea of baby led weaning, but having no idea where to start, I did just that, followed a book. But I soon realised that something was wrong. My son was diagnosed with multiple food allergies and I had to learn to cook, free from dairy, egg, peas and lentils pretty fast.
Having realised that food allergies and intolerance affect many parents, a friend and I started a blog (www.zachandcharlie.com), specifically designed for the parents of babies and toddlers to provide information, advice, recipes and support to other parents going through a similar experience. Since then, and with the support of Dr Adam Fox, Paediatric Allergy Specialist at St Thomas' Hospital, I have written a book ‘The Allergy Free Baby and Toddler Book’ which has just been published by Vermilion. It is full of parents' stories and experiences and advises on everything from medical stuff to help with hospital visits and diagnosis, to emotional and practical support.
You can buy it in all good bookshops (ISBN 9-780091-954871) or on line here - cost £12.99.
The book, which does also contain some recipes, is not just a primer for parents struggling to understand what is wrong with their food allergic children, but a massive morale booster when morale is greatly in need of boosting!
Based on Charlotte's own experiences and those of the parents she has met both through her blog and through the allergy unit at St Thomas', it is backed by the knowledge and advice of Dr Adam Fox, one of the UK's leading consultant paediatric allergists who is clinical lead for allergy at Guy's and St Thomas' and medical advisor to both Allergy UK and to the Anaphylaxis Campaign.
So, it includes accessible explanations of food allergy, the signs and symptoms in babies and very small children, and the testing protocols, but it also guides you through what can often be frustrating visits to GPs and medical advisers with little understanding or experience of food allergy and how to get that vital referral on to an allergy specialist.
It also includes much sensible guidance on the everyday management of food allergy, the related conditions, such as asthma, eczema and rhinitis, anaphylaxis and weaning and nutrition.
However, almost the most valuable part of the book is the quotes from the dozen or so families with allergic children which illustrate every almost every page. Being the parent of an allergic child is frightening, frustrating and totally exhausting and puts huge strains on family life and relationships. Being able to share these frustrations – or just to know that someone else has felt as desperate, alone, tired and frightened as you - but has come out the other side – is enormously helpful, and is acknowledged to be so by all the mums who contributed.
So a really excellent book - and fabulous value at only £12.99. Definitely a 'buy now while stocks last!'
The Allergy Free Baby and Toddler Book is published by Vermilion. You can buy it in all good bookshops (ISBN 9-780091-954871) or on line from the publishers.