Partying safely at Christmas

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Christmas is here and the new year is near, meaning only one thing – celebration and partying. No matter the occasion, it is important to consider your allergy.

Prepare

Make sure you let whoever you are with know about your allergy! Tell them what symptoms to look out for and how to use the injector in the event of a reaction. You should have your epipens with you at all times. If you haven’t already, check out the #takethekit video. Your injectors will have an expiry date which you must keep an eye on, remember to get a new prescription once the old ones have expired. If you do feel like you are going in to an anaphylactic shock you must stay with someone you know who can help you!

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Food

Remember to check the ingredients of anything and everything you eat, even if you think that it should be ok. Recipes often change and treat size versions sometimes differ from the standard version. These ingredients should be highlighted or in bold. Don’t take a risk if you are unsure. If you are eating out, let a waiter know about your allergy as they are obliged by law to tell you whether their food is safe for you to consume. Be especially careful eating seasonal foods such as mince pies and sprouts which are often cooked alongside nuts. Some breads also, are covered in seeds and there is likely to be cross contamination. Be careful of marzipan and praline which both contain nuts. Unfortunately sweet foods are often more likely to contain nuts or traces. If you happen to visit a Christmas market be especially careful when purchasing or sampling imported goods as there have been occasions where labelling has been incorrect.

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Alcohol

Obviously there are risks to drinking alcohol which lead to a lack of clear thought regarding the actions you take. So it would be a good idea to drink sensibly so that you don’t eat or drink anything which will cause a reaction. Evidence suggests that alcohol can actually worsen the effect of a reaction. Whilst it may not be the first thought that enters your head, some alcohol, such as wine, contains ingredients such as milk and eggs. Plus some gins and liquors contain nuts. It would be a good idea to check not only the ingredients of the food that you eat, but also what drinks contain. It is a bad idea to share drinks with friends as they may have previously eaten something that you are allergic to.

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If you wish to find out more about allergies, head to the Anaphylaxis Campaign website, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.

Remember to enjoy yourself and make the most of the dark days of winter 🙂

Happy Christmas!

Patrick

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