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Food Allergy Concierge Blog

What Hotels Need to Know about Food Allergies

Always wanted to stay at a hotel but worried that your food allergies make it impossible? When you go to a hotel you’ve never stayed at before, you have to explain to them about allergies so they can understand how and why you need to be accommodated. These are the top three things that kitchen staff at hotels need to know about food allergies. Allergies Can Be Life-Threatening There’s a big range of allergies, from sensitivity to life-threatening. Sensitivity means that a person will suffer from symptoms which interfere with his quality of life, such as digestive problems, migraines and sleeplessness....
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Why Dining Out Matters - Even When You Have Food Allergies

So many clients have told us that their family’s food allergies make it so difficult to go out to eat that they’ve basically given up on it. But we can hear in their voices how much this bothers them and how much they yearn to dine out as other families do. We work so hard to allow families to eat at restaurants because we believe that an occasional meal out is essential. Here’s why we think dining out matters: Feeling Like a Normal Family Dealing with allergies can sometimes take over your family life and make your kids feel like you're...
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Do Food Allergies Cause Social Isolation?

In our work providing services for families dealing with food allergies, we often hear from children that they experience social isolation. One young client told us that she eats lunch every day at school at a special allergy table and can only choose two friends to sit with her. This makes it hard to make new friends or get closer to existing friends. A small study conducted by professors at the University of Waterloo revealed that allergies could have significant social implications for children. The kids reported sitting separately at school lunch, not being invited to birthday parties, and being treated...
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Our 5 Favorite Online Resources for Food Allergy Support

If you’re raising a child with life-threatening allergies, you are not alone - there is a lot of food allergy support available online. It can be hard to wade through all the information to find the most reliable and helpful online resources, so we’ve done the hard work for you. Here are our 5 favorite resources: Kids with Food Allergies The Kids with Food Allergies website is a project of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. It has a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions, lots of great recipes, and useful free guides. It also offers a free online course...
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Behind the Scenes of Food Allergy Concierge

By Bracha Zanbar, Client Services Manager, Food Allergy Concierge One of my jobs at Food Allergy Concierge is to ensure that the restaurants our clients eat at are allergy-safe. This involves a lot of hard work and the full cooperation of the restaurant staff. Usually, I have nothing but praise for the hardworking staff who do everything they can to collaborate with me so our clients can enjoy a relaxing allergy-free meal. Unfortunately, sometimes restaurant staff doesn’t really understand what it means to cook an allergy-free dish. They are convinced that if they leave the allergens out, that would be sufficient. They don’t...
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Do You Need a Vacation from Your Vacation?

If your vacation is stressful and hectic, you are likely to need a vacation from your vacation. This happened to one of our clients recently. Susan wrote us this letter: Dear Food Allergy Concierge, I am writing to you because you are my last chance at getting a real vacation. Last year, we traveled to Italy on a family vacation with our son, who is allergic to eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, and sesame. We knew we wouldn’t be able to eat in most restaurants, so we rented an apartment with a full kitchen. I swear I spent the first day just...
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I Never Realized How Challenging Allergies Can Be – Until this Week

By Bracha Zan Bar, Client Services Manager, Food Allergy Concierge As a child, I never realized how challenging allergies could be for the allergic child's mom. My mom never complained about not going out or about being afraid every time my sister took a bite of anything or every time she left the house. I remember my mom always cooking and not wanting to eat out at friends' houses on weekends, always hosting, but I never felt that she was frustrated in my eyes as a child. The allergies were there. And my mom just dealt with them. She never dared...
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Bringing a Sesame Allergy to Israel - Can It Be Done?

It’s not easy to deal with a sesame allergy in Israel. There are two reasons for this: There’s no awareness of sesame allergies in Israel.Sesame and sesame traces can be found in all kinds of foods you would not expect them to be in. It is a known fact that Israeli factories don’t clean their machines when they grind spices, so there can be traces of sesame in all spices, including paprika and pepper. Many candies contain sesame, and all bread crumbs contain either sesame or traces of sesame. Deep fryers are often used to fry schnitzel (breaded chicken breast), so...
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Survival Guide to Flying with an Allergic Child

We get many questions about flying with an allergic child because it's one of the most challenging aspects of travel. The confined space of an airplane combined with the restrictions on bringing liquids aboard makes flying with allergies almost a military operation! We even know some families who don't take vacations that require a flight for fear of an allergic attack on board. But imagine a world in which you can't visit family and friends who live far away and can't visit some of the most exciting destinations in the world. We're here to change that. Advance Planning A successful airplane...
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The Food Allergy-Safe Restaurant: Unicorn or Reality?

Is a food allergy-safe restaurant a possibility? We recently heard from Julie about her frustration with eating out. She loved going to restaurants with her husband Dan, but then they discovered that their daughter Sara had a severe food allergy to tree nuts.   Suddenly, dining out was an anxiety-provoking experienced. They had to check every single ingredient and make sure that restaurant staff understood which ingredients might have allergens and how dangerous cross-contact could be. They stopped going out altogether, and Julie focused on learning to cook foods that Sara could eat safely. We hear stories like this all the...
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My Allergy Free Vacation Diary

Growing up as a sister with severe food allergies, my allergy-free vacation diary from when I was a child is eye-opening, considering the alternatives available now.  My sister had a variety of severe food allergies. Dealing with food allergies in Israel, the land of sesame, nuts… and zero awareness of allergies, was not easy.  I remember scanning parties before my sister would enter to make sure there was no Bamba, the local snack made from peanuts, that could be deadly for my younger sister, who had an airborne peanut allergy.    I remember our first - and only - family vacation...
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NEW Price List!!!

Our 2019 Price list has come out. FAC is continuously trying to have more accessible services for wider populations! Check out our allergy-free trips coming up for 2019!   Contact Food Allergy Concierge to receive the 2019 price list!

Trump National Doral Miami Hotel

Spring 2018 marked the first time Food Allergy Concierge supervised allergy-free meals at the Trump National Doral Miami Hotel. It won't be the last time!  The hotel supplied our food allergy specialists with their very own kitchen.  The specialists, together with outstanding chefs served allergy-free food cooked and presented to the highest standards.  Each ingredient was carefully inspected for the nut and fish allergens this client cannot have.  Food Allergy Concierge made it possible for the family to enjoy a full resort experience! Contact Food Allergy Concierge to arrange a relaxing vacation for you and your family!

Food Allergies During Passover in Israel

Food allergies year-round are challenging enough to handle. Passover is an entirely different challenge. People wrongly assume that traveling to Israel with food allergies is easier than during the year. While this may be true for certain allergies, such as gluten allergies, it is, in fact, not true. Food Allergy Concierge (FAC) is here to provide education on safely traveling in Israel during Passover. Allergens on Passover The problem of allergens on Passover stems from different traditions regarding stringency of kosher for Passover items, and kosher for Passover procedures are insufficient for allergen microparticle cleansing. The Sephardim eat kitniyot (legumes), and...
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Misconceptions About Food Allergies

There are common misconceptions about food allergies. The following is a list of certain misconceptions and what the true facts are about food allergies: 1. A food allergy just means a mild reaction like stomach aches or mild hives, to a certain food. However food allergies can be a lot more dangerous than that. Hives can be the first symptom of anaphalactic shock, leading to the throat closing, loss of consciousness, and even death. Food allergies are not only potentially life-threatening, they’re life-altering. People with food allergies must always be vigilant to ensure they avoid reactions. 2.Digesting a small amount of...
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Students with Food Allergies

If you are a student with food allergies, dealing with dorm life can be a challenge. Many of your peers may not have exposure to anaphylactic allergies and do not understand the danger. It is important to keep your friends informed and take precautions to ensure your living environment is safe. For example, an allergy sufferer meets his roommate for the first time and explains he is allergic to peanuts. His well-intending roommate loves peanut butter and promises to be careful whenever he eats peanut butter in the room. "I'll keep the peanut butter on my side of the room. How dangerous can it be?"...
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Allergy Cards for Kids with Food Allergies

Every parent knows that traveling to a foreign country can be risky, especially for children with allergies. If your child is traveling for a short-term, summer, or year long program, you must take action immediately. Unfamiliarity with the local language, customs, and cuisine can be challenging and even dangerous. Kate Ryan Williams of the Huffington Post describes the fear that grips parents when their children have an allergic reaction without them present: "Tears came along with the terror of the realization that I could do nothing for my child. Things were beyond my control, out of my hands. I was crying so...
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Planning an Allergy Free Trip to Israel

It is possible to plan an allergy-free trip to Israel, but it takes a lot of preparation. The earlier you begin planning, the safer the trip will be! Many families and children with allergies come to Israel to celebrate a Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Food Allergy Concierge is here to make your dream Bar/Bat Mitzvah trip come true even when family members have food allergies. After completing complicated logistics and working with your tour company and tour guide, we reserve restaurants along your itinerary. We spend hours doing research to assure you of a safe food environment. Food Allergy Concierge only works with...
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Forward: How Israel Beat Peanut Allergies

Eliana Marcus Aaron writes "Allergy advocacy used to be easy. Given the potentially tragic consequences of anaphylactic shock, everyone assumed a simple formula: the more precautions the better. In wealthy countries like the United States, ever greater accommodations were made to ensure that allergy sufferers were separated from the foods that coul...
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Allergy Free Baked Goods in Israel

There's no doubt that Israel is not the easiest place to live or travel for those with allergies. Sesame, eggs, peanuts, and tree nuts are almost ubiquitous in baked goods of all kinds: from cakes to cookies, from bread to burekas. Even when a product does not contain one of these problem ingredients, it's more likely than not that it was mixed or baked with contaminated utensils. Until now, Israelis and tourists with allergies had to suffer in silence, whilst everyone else enjoyed all the delicious things Israeli bakeries have to offer. EMA care and Food Allergy Concierge are proud to...
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What Our Clients Say

Meticulous in their preparations

During our recent visit to Israel, we really struggled to find food for our son who has anaphylactic level allergies to egg and sesame. We approached both restaurants and hotels and were told they were unable or unwilling to take responsibility for preparing his food.

 After learning about Dr. Eliana on-line, we contacted her in the hopes that she could provide a ‘normal’ restaurant experience for our family.

 Both she and Shani were meticulous in their preparations with the restaurants to ensure that our son had a wonderful and safe experience.

 We truly appreciate their efforts to take care of our son, and to provide us with a lovely vacation experience.

T.M., Chicago, USA

Comfortable, calm, and at ease

We want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the amazing gift you have given us over this Pesach- the gift of having you with us!!!!

We have NEVER felt more comfortable, calm, and at ease than we did these past 10 days. Your warmth, professionalism, kindness, and care shown through in all that you did.

My children are so grateful that they were able to be with you this Pesach. You made sure that they were so well looked after and they felt so at ease and comfortable with you! You were so amazing and approachable to them! And they LOVED all the food you so amazingly prepared (supervised allergy-free food preparation, managed menus) for them!

It’s very difficult for us to trust people when it comes to our kids and allergies. You magically were able to take away ALL of our anxieties, and nervousness (and we don’t give that away so easily!!)

We can never fully thank you enough. We truly feel that you instantly became part of our family and we look forward to G-d willing being able to be with you and plan amazing trips with you many many many more times!!!! 

CO, Canada
April 2016

Very Helpful

Thank you and may Hashem bless you for the work you do. My son Jacob said your allergy card has been very helpful. I am so grateful- beyond words.

Yasher Koach!
L.R., NY, NY

Delicious and Safe

Thank you for delivering our allergy free baked goods to our hotel.  We just tasted the focaccia and it was delicious!

All the best,

S.C., New Jersey

Thank You

We can't thank you enough for assembling this top-notch team of specialists to work with our daughter while she is in Israel.

T.G., Philadelphia, PA

The Allergy Card was Extremely Helpful

"Food Allergy Concierge assisted us with a very helpful, detailed customized allergy card in Hebrew.  The Allergy card was extremely helpful for multiple allergies and allowed us to eat safely in several eateries and hotels. Highly recommended.”

G.A. Illinois USA

Allergy Free baked goods for the lockdown

My family ordered a week's worth of food from Food Allergy Concierge during the most recent lockdown. Having the food on hand, and knowing that it was safe for everyone in the family to eat, helped turn the lockdown into a stay-cation! We were still able to take a break from cooking and worrying, and we look forward to using FAC's services again in the future.

Very easy to order and communicate your needs

We are so lucky we found this company to help us while our son was traveling. They provided allergy-safe baked goods and delivered them to his hotel so he could have bread and pastries on his month-long Israel trip. It was very easy ordering and communicating his needs. I would definitely use the food allergy concierge again the next time he travels to Israel.

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