“Allergic Girl” Book Review

I have been busy reading my latest find: “Allergic Girl – adventures in living well with food allergies” by Sloane Miller. This book came out a little while ago, and I’ve been wanting to read it ever since!

Basically, the book is designed to do as it says: help YOU, the allergic person, live life to the fullest with allergies. Sloane is an “allergic girl,” and has been since she was little. She’s an Oxford grad and currently lives the life of a New York socialite. More importantly, she has a hugely popular allergy blog (Please Don’t Pass the Nuts – allergicgirl.blogspot.com) and she is a personal food allergy coach.

As I read the book, I began to realize that for some people, allergies can be really difficult to manage, especially if they’ve been diagnosed later in life. Because I’ve always had allergies, managing them seems a normal part of life; for many, it’s not so simple.

Sloane starts by encouraging the reader to form a “Team You.” This team is composed of individuals who can help manage your allergies: doctors, allergist, parents, “safe” friends (friends who understand your allergies), partners, etc. From there, she builds on how YOU, new allergic girl/boy, can live a wonderful, safe life. Basically, it’s a self-help book, but it’s also well written and a helpful read even if you feel you’ve got your allergy management under control.

I think this book would really benefit someone who is newly diagnosed with food allergies. I was very impressed with how diligent Sloane is in managing her allergies – she calls EVERY restaurant before a meal, whether it be a staff meal, a private function, or just a fun get together. She’s always prepared. At the same time, she’s down-to-earth about allergies. She admits that she’s made some errors in her allergic life (haven’t we all!). With her help, you’ll gain some great tips for managing your allergies at restaurants, in love, with friends, during celebrations, while travelling, and more unpredictable situations.

One thing I noticed is that Benadryl is referenced a few times as an allergy medicine. It’s important to remember that Benadryl is NOT enough to stop an anaphylactic reaction. The most effective and safest treatment of a suspected allergic reaction is to administer your auto-injector (EpiPen or Allerject), and call 911 immediately.

Overall, “Allergic Girl” is a solid read. If you have had your allergies for a long time, it may not always be relevant, but it definitely reassuring for those who feel their allergy management skills are a little off. Read it and let me know what you think!

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