Tuesday, March 27, 2012

"Weed the Peanut Kids Out of the Gene Pool"

Hey, ignorant (probably teenage) comment troll.

Yes, I'm talking to you. You're the one commenting on the Anderson Cooper article about the kid with EoE who can't eat, right? You've written things like:
Charles Darwin was right..... Only the strong survive. 

Just put the lil guy down. I'm sorry but thats natural selection, he's not fit to live. 

When the offspring cannot consume the species' diet, they typically do not survive long enough to reproduce. Nature takes care of the polluted gene pool swiftly. 
Your comments really piss me off, but probably not for the reason you think. See, my kid has been allergic for 17 years now so I've seen my share of haters. Haters gotta hate and I know that. I've dealt with the Facebook groups calling for his death. I've heard the stories about classroom bullies who think it's funny to spread peanut butter on his backpack. I'm over that part of things. I don't profess to understand why you need to go through a stage of public hating, but I don't internalize your hate anymore.

Except with statements that are factually inaccurate and short-sighted. Then I get pissed.

Food allergies are not a genetic disease. Let me say it again. Food allergies are not a genetic disease.

In case you didn't learn this in school, changes to the genetic code take many hundreds of generations to happen. Food allergies have DOUBLED in just the last 10 years. Right now, one in 13 kids has a food allergy and it looks like the number is continuing to increase.

Food allergies are a disease of the immune system. Unlike the genetic code, the immune system can adapt to changes in the environment in a generation, but it can only go so far. These kids are not genetically deficient. They are a warning. They are the canary in the coal mine. Something has changed in our environment that is affecting ALL of us. The "peanut kid" may have an allergy as a result -- but that doesn't mean that YOUR immune system isn't also reacting in some way you can't see. Whatever's affecting the peanut kids is probably affecting you as well.

Food allergies are just the tip of the iceberg. All diseases that affect the intestinal tract are rising at an incredible rate. Crohn's disease. Asthma. Autoimmune disorders like lupus and diabetes. Cancer. Even if you're not in the 25% of the population prone to allergic disorders, you should understand that cancer could be in your future. Doesn't it seem like a good idea to you to figure out what the changes are in our environment that are leading to such a dramatic increase in all these diseases?

Plus, I know you think this will never touch you in the future, but I can almost guarantee it will. Look at that statistic: 1 in 13. Food allergies have doubled in the last 10 years. What if they double again? Right now, there are, on average, two allergic kids in every classroom. What if it's four by the time you have kids? This is all fun and hate games until you have to look at your kid (or niece or friend's child) swelling like a balloon and gasping on the floor.

Just think about it. That's all I'm asking. And, if you gotta hate...hate a little smarter next time.

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  1. Thank you for this blog post. My son has the same disease as Joshua, but to a milder degree. We have no history of anaphylaxis (it is a seperate issue, but many people with EGIDs have both) I am utterly horrified by the cruel and heartless reactions from so many. I realized this week that awareness and understanding are 2 very different things. Have you read Robyn O'Brien's book, "The Unhealthy Truth"? It sounds like you may have, but if not, it is quite the read.

  2. Let's weed ignorance out of our gene pool... I pray for the safety of these haters children, hopefully none of them fall ill and need to be put down.

  3. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this....from the Boy Allergic to Food's mama warrior!!!!

  4. Jamie, I have not read The Unhealthy Truth, but I have heard of it. I do think mothers "in the trenches" have a wisdom that medical researchers should not ignore. It's nice to see that they're finally looking for the environmental trigger(s) for these autoimmune disorders!

    And thanks Kat and PocketOT - glad you found and liked the blog.

  5. yep more LOVE from me too!

  6. Hugs, hugs, and more hugs from myitchyboy.co.uk

  7. if you look at what people have been doing differently and looked at what other diseases are rising (diabetes, obesity, etc.), it could be suggested that the eating of more processed foods (let's say mcdonald's, delis, and bakery goods) are contributing to all of these factors.

    it could also be said some (not all) parents have not appropriately tested their children for allergies, and are assuming their children are allergic to something when they are not. (i do have a friend who has a child who supposedly tested positive for a wheat allergy, and one day the kid ate some cookies accidently and the kid did not have any reaction).

    i'm just trying to let you understand what others (but probably far from all) are thinking.

  8. I just found your website, I am scrolling thru the top 10. It's pretty awesome, I wish had your quick responses and wit, the next time a dumb soccer mom gives me flack about my FAC !!

  9. I just found your blog and have been reading through... I had a pretty nasty experience with another mother at my child's preschool (the school went nut-free this year in large part-though not entirely- due to my child's allergies). She was basically saying that my child should be excluded from the general population so that her kid could have a pbj at lunch on Mondays before ballet. After some (barely) veiled threats toward the life of my two-year-old, she got herself and her child kicked out of the school. I couldn't get over how obtuse the woman was... obtuse and cruel. It was something I had never faced before, but am starting to realize that I'm going to be seeing a lot of it. I don't know how people don't understand the range of this issue. Thanks for writing... Reading your posts is already therapeutic for me!

  10. Glad you found me, LDR (although sorry it was probably because of your bad experience). It does seem like it's getting a little better in the schools. After all, your school kicked them out! That's a real step toward inclusiveness.

    In the meantime, it helps to let off steam. :)

  11. Allergies and genetics are intertwined, yes, perhaps there are environmental factors too, but genetics plays a large role in determining whether one is susceptible to allergies:



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