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I’m Allergic to Corn- Now What?

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I AM ALLERGIC TO CORN… NOW WHAT???

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I went to a new doctor recently, and found out that I have an undiagnosed food allergy. This was so interesting to me because I don’t have “normal” allergy symptoms. I didn’t realize that even if I wasn’t breaking out, having breathing issues, or skin trouble that I could still be internally struggling with an allergic reaction. I consider myself to be healthy, active, and didn’t think there was anything per-se WRONG with what I was eating.

 

 

(Cause let’s get it straight, there’s nothing wrong with the occassional pizza, mac n cheese, and chips and salsa, right?)

 

After tons (an hour and a half) of muscle testing, I found out that I tested normally for gluten (cool.. I guess it doesn’t mean I SHOULD eat it, just means I’m not allergic) chocolate (phew!), coffee (this was exciting) and even dairy (not a fan, but also not allergic). However, I did find out that my body weakened and therefore has an allergic response to CORN.

 

“Easy.”

 

That was my first reaction!! I felt very nonchalant about how easy it would be to avoid corn. I don’t eat corn, unless it’s in some organic chips from Costco and so I thought this would be pretty easy to make the new lifestyle change!! That was, until he explained all the names that corn likes to hide underneath… And all the ingredients that are derived from corn or may have corn in them! Want to take a peek?

Corn Derived Ingredients

Acetic acid

Alcohol

Alpha tocopherol

Artificial flavorings

Artificial sweeteners

Ascorbates

Ascorbic acid

Aspartame (Artificial sweetener)

Astaxanthin

Baking powder

Barley malt

Bleached flour

Blended sugar

Brown sugar (typically the caramel color)

Calcium citrate

Calcium fumarate

Calcium gluconate

Calcium lactate

Calcium magnesium acetate (CMA)

Calcium stearate

Calcium stearoyl lactylate

Caramel and caramel color

Carbonmethylcellulose sodium

Cellulose microcrystalline

Cellulose, methyl

Cellulose, powdered

Cetearyl glucoside

Choline chloride

Citric acid

Citrus cloud emulsion (CCS)

Coco glycerides (cocoglycerides)

Confectioners sugar

Crosscarmellose sodium

Crystalline dextrose

Crystalline fructose

Cyclodextrin

DATUM (a dough conditioner)

Decyl glucoside

Decyl polyglucose

Dextrin

Dextrose (also found in IV solutions)

Dextrose anything (such as monohydrate or anhydrous)

d-Gluconic acid

Distilled white vinegar

Drying agent

Erythorbic acid

Erythritol

Ethanol

Ethocel 20

Ethylcellulose

Ethylene

Ethyl acetate

Ethyl alcohol

Ethyl lactate

Ethyl maltol

Fibersol-2

Flavorings

Food starch

Fructose

Fruit juice concentrate

Fumaric acid

Germ/germ meal

Gluconate

Gluconic acid

Glucono delta-lactone

Gluconolactone

Glucosamine

Glucose

Glucose syrup (also found in IV solutions)

Glutamate

Gluten

Gluten feed/meal

Glycerides

Glycerin

Glycerol

Golden syrup

Honey

Hydrolyzed vegetable protein

Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose

Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose pthalate (HPMCP)

Inositol

Invert syrup or sugar

Iodized salt

Lactate

Lactic acid

Lauryl glucoside

Lecithin

Linoleic acid

Lysine

Magnesium fumarate

Maize

Malic acid

Malonic acid

Malt syrup from corn

Malt, malt extract

Maltitol

Maltodextrin

Maltol

Maltose

Mannitol

Methyl gluceth

Methyl glucose

Methyl glucoside

Methylcellulose

Microcrystaline cellulose

Modified cellulose gum

Modified food starch

Molasses (corn syrup may be present; know your product)

Mono and di glycerides

Monosodium glutamate

MSG

Natural flavorings

Olestra/Olean

Polydextrose

Polylactic acid (PLA)

Polysorbates (e.g. Polysorbate 80)

Polyvinyl acetate

Potassium citrate

Potassium fumarate

Potassium gluconate

Powdered sugar

Pregelatinized starch

Propionic acid

Propylene glycol

Propylene glycol monostearate

Saccharin

Salt (iodized salt)

Semolina (unless from wheat)

Simethicone

Sodium carboxymethylcellulose

Sodium citrate

Sodium erythorbate

Sodium fumarate

Sodium lactate

Sodium starch glycolate

Sodium stearoyl fumarate

Sorbate

Sorbic acid

Sorbitan

Sorbitan monooleate

Sorbitan tri-oleate

Sorbitol

Sorghum (syrup and/or grain may be mixed with corn)

Splenda (Artificial sweetener)

Starch

Stearic acid

Stearoyls

Sucralose (Artificial sweetener)

Sucrose

Sugar

Talc

Threonine

Tocopherol (vitamin E)

Treacle

Triethyl citrate

Unmodified starch

Vanilla, natural flavoring

Vanilla, pure or extract

Vanillin

Vinegar, distilled white

Vinyl acetate

Vitamin C

Vitamin E

Vitamin supplements

Xanthan gum

Xylitol

Yeast

 

Is your head spinning yet? Cause mine is. And, the thing about a food allergy is that it’s kind of like the Biblical principle of “a little leaven leavens the whole lump” — in other words, a little corn will still make my body react. This made me realize that ordering a pizza from the place across the street, having a slice of my Mom’s chicken pot pie with Betty Crocker crust, and even just grabbing a container of almond milk from the grocery store was gone now. I have to learn a new way to eat, and interact with food, especially the food that other people may prepare. It also made me realize that the occasional surprise and delight foods, like a cute donut stop on our Saturday morning bike rides, was gone. 

 

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I desperately do not want to be the person with the food allergy, always needing exceptions to be made and asking 101 questions to the server at the restaurant, so I text my friend Jacqueline to ask how she handles her food sensitivities (she is allergic to corn as well). To which she shared with me that she has found corn in the craziest of places like a jar of organic garlic cloves, and that the safest thing to eat while at a restaurant is a salad with fresh veggies and olive oil and lemon juice on the side. We commiserated over the loss of being able to order ANYTHING we probably wanted, and I learned that even super healthy restaurants like True Foods (my fav) have corn derived ingredients in seasonings, dressings, and sauces. I then realized that guilt over trying to keep everyone happy at the expense of my own health wasn’t going to do me any good. And, I will just have to learn what I can eat so I can still live fully. 

 

My first week without anything corn was easy because I was at home.

 

My second week without corn was hard, because I traveled out of state.

 

Saying “no” to things I typically would love to partake in has already been tough, like the angel food cake I made for my Mom and the homemade barbecue my brother prepared. I have a feeling this journey isn’t going to be easy!!

 

One of the craziest things my doctor shared with me, was that even TOPICAL corn is bad for me. Which means, my FAVORITE homemade deodorant is no longer safe for me. (Literally, was HEARTBROKEN to hear this.) I was able to find an amazing new deodorant though, that is made with all pure, delicious ingredients and even scored a discount code for you too if you want to order it. (Code: Hannah)

 

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I GOT THE LEMONGRASS SCENT… AND IT SMELLS DIVINE.


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Like springy, summery, outdoorsy happiness.

I am curious about their charcoal one, it gets amazing reviews but with all my white tops I was just too nervous to try black under my arms. If you try it, let me know. I think I may order it for Mike. Lavender or geranium are next on my list! And yes…. The answer is YES. This deodorant ACTUALLY WORKS. I live in Arizona, and it’s 100 degrees right now, so you can trust me on that. Before I made my own deodorant, I tried EVERY ONE ON THE MARKET I felt like, and none of them worked. So this is such a relief, because I was convinced I was just gonna stink!!!

 

 

Which one sounds the most luxurious to you?!

 

I will be starting to research new options for food, snacks, dressings, etc so let me know if this is something that you are interested in learning more about! I will share what I learn here, and if you have any tips on avoiding corn in food, I would LOVE to hear them. I am new to this food allergy game and I know it will be a journey!!

 

Talk soon, 

 

Hannah

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