|Ireland's first Allergy and Gluten Free show 2010 – Jeanne Quiqley reports|
Allergy sufferers flock to the fair
Ana and Phyl Axis are colourful cartoon images specially designed to provide easy-to-understand story lines about Ana’s allergies. Young children are able to identify with Ana and doing the puzzles will help make learning about allergies both interesting and fun. So say sisters - and sufferers - Louise (18) and Edel (9) Connolly.
The first of its kind, the three-day fair attracted 19 speakers, about 75 exhibitors and thousands of visitors. It was sponsored by a number of allergy charities, including societies such as Coeliac, Asthma and Eczema, Allergy NI (Northern Ireland) and Anaphylaxis Ireland.
Another stand that attracted visitors, particularly children, was Swedish Glacé, an ice-cream that’s free from everything – lactose, gluten, cholesterol, GM, and is suitable for both vegetarians and vegans. Children who had not tasted ice cream for years were absolutely delighted with this product and kept dragging parents to the stand for ‘just another taste.’
Seminars over the three days attracted a wide audience, from families with young children to teenagers and adults. Topics included anaphylaxis; allergy in infants; allergy and complementary medicine; modern approaches to allergy diagnosis; practicalities of coping with a restricted diet.
‘If you eat cucumber and become ill, it’s probably not because you’re allergic to cucumbers. It’s much more likely to be a toxic reaction to the chemicals on the cucumber,’ says allergy specialist Dr Joe Fitzgibbon.
Nutritional Therapist Moya Dillane spoke of the role of such therapists in allergy treatment. She explained that a therapist will try and find out what part of your lifestyle and diet may be contributing to your ill-health. Following consultation, you can get a personal diet plan that will help you to get back feelings of well-being and better health.