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.
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
Aspartame (Artificial sweetener)
Brown sugar (typically the caramel color)
Calcium magnesium acetate (CMA)
Calcium stearoyl lactylate
Caramel and caramel color
Citrus cloud emulsion (CCS)
Coco glycerides (cocoglycerides)
DATUM (a dough conditioner)
Dextrose (also found in IV solutions)
Dextrose anything (such as monohydrate or anhydrous)
Distilled white vinegar
Fruit juice concentrate
Glucose syrup (also found in IV solutions)
Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose pthalate (HPMCP)
Invert syrup or sugar
Malt syrup from corn
Malt, malt extract
Modified cellulose gum
Modified food starch
Molasses (corn syrup may be present; know your product)
Mono and di glycerides
Polylactic acid (PLA)
Polysorbates (e.g. Polysorbate 80)
Propylene glycol monostearate
Salt (iodized salt)
Semolina (unless from wheat)
Sodium starch glycolate
Sodium stearoyl fumarate
Sorghum (syrup and/or grain may be mixed with corn)
Splenda (Artificial sweetener)
Sucralose (Artificial sweetener)
Tocopherol (vitamin E)
Vanilla, natural flavoring
Vanilla, pure or extract
Vinegar, distilled white
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!!
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