Fuelling the family….

Life in the fast lane!!

Life in the fast lane!!

I have been thinking about my blog and the fact that I have not really posted regularly for quite a while. I think the main reason is that eczema and allergies have just become a normal part of our family life. I barely think about it anymore. Even when the husband was formally tested for allergies, and we found that he too is allergic to dairy, it was no biggy!

But then recently a friend questioned me on how we deal with Ayla and her allergies as a family, as it had been recommended that her young daughter eliminate dairy from her diet. I realised that things we now do automatically would seem and indeed were quite daunting when newly faced with a restrictive diet in a child.

So it left me thinking there is so much more to share. How we eat and cook when on holiday, when abroad, when camping, children’s parties, school dinners etc.

But added to this Ayla has made me so much more aware and interested in healthy living and nutrition. I would say I have always been healthy but as I have competed in more and more endurance events (half marathons, marathons, half ironman…) I am more and more conscious of how I fuel my body. I have read several books about ultra runners who have converted to plant based diets and much of what they suggest is in fact already part of our family diet due to the allergies. So I shall also include some super healthy recipes for the mums and dads or older kids.

After all…you are what you eat…!!!

Love Summer…..

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I have always loved summer….the sun, holiday, less clothes to wear, to wash, to dry!!

This summer we decided to stretch it out and spent 3 weeks in the South of France. There is absolutely nothing better for Ayla and her skin. The sun and salt water worked its magic along with a Mediterranean diet….she was silky smooth in no time. Seeing her on holiday you would never know how badly she has and still does suffer with eczema.

But it takes work….no wheat, no dairy, constant creaming up and a good healthy lifestyle.
It’s not hard work though, when you reap such wonderful benefits!

We have been lucky this year. The Summer in the UK was really quite good and only today 4th October does it look a bit grim outside. We can cope with this!! And will look forward to around three weeks in Europe next August :-)

Autumn = Porridge

Full of goodness

Full of goodness

Well the weather looks like it is changing. So it’s time for something warm in the morning. My little boy has always loved porridge but Ayla has taken some persuading!!!

I make a great big bowl, with oats and almond milk and sometimes add blueberries then add a little honey after it is done.

For me….I add chia and flaxseeds.

For birthdays…I add sprinkles!!! Birthday porridge!!!

Eat Study….

I know it has been too long. This winter I will start back with the blog and make more effort!! But for now just a quick update from our 3 year check up for The Eat Study.

We went down to London last week and Cade and Mummy and Daddy had skin prick testing….along with general height, growth for C. No surprises I came back completely clear. However Cade is allergic to grass like Ayla but Daddy has a whole host of allergies!!! I am not surprised as he has severe eczema and I am a firm believer there is always a trigger. So he is also allergic to grass, also pollen, house mites (dust) and big bummer also dairy :-(

In the evening when Ayla goes to bed we often break out the chocolate and ‘treats’…..so now it’s just me and Cade!! When Ayla went to gymnastics last week with Daddy, we dived straight into the Ben and Jerrys!!! I fear I am becoming a secret eater.

Luckily though…day to day eating is pretty much the same as we all generally follow an Ayla Friendly diet.

 

Coconut Oil

My new super food! Coconut Oil…..

I am in to smoothies at the moment…..and have been adding all the normal healthy things like frozen berries, banana, honey and more recently spirulina (green algae!). I usually use a base of soya or almond milk as I personally hate the taste of cows milk and obviously its just easier if we all have the same. I make a big jug and then share it out with the kids.

Recently I read about Coconut Oil and have been hunting for some. I brought a jar from Holland and Barratt so have started on it this week. For eczema it can be used both internally by adding to smoothies, cakes etc but it can also be used externally. Ayla has a little dry and sore patch under her mouth from licking (she has had this previously and it became infected). So I am know using the super oil on it the sore area. It spreads on her skin beautifully and much kinder for the face than steroid cream!

Coconut Oil has anti bacterial and anti viral properties as it contains lauric acid. And it is a ‘good’ fat. It is basically just pretty fabulous all around!

Suits are back :-(

This is Ayla all ready for bed in her cotton sleep suits.  For the first time in 3 years she stopped wearing them over the summer months. However the colder weather is back so we are slapping the cream on and then put the suits on which hold in the moisture for much longer. It also stops her PJs getting as creamy!

I guess it is quite time consuming and most 5 year olds can get ready for bed themselves but the effort is worth it.

For anyone reading this, we get them on prescription from the Doctors. So ask!! Ayla also wears the top under her clothing if she has a bad flare up as they are comfy on her skin :-)

 

Sorbet!!

Why have I not thought of this before! SORBET!

I was out with Ayla today cutting through a big shopping complex heading to the theatre when Ayla’s eyes were drawn to the ice cream parlour! My initial thought was oh poor baby……then I saw ‘dairy free!’ So over we went to ask and not just the one choice but half a dozen sat in with the regular ice cream. I thought Ayla’s eyes would pop out of her head. She chose raspberry with sprinkles! Yum yum!

So now I will be looking for super yummy sorbets in the supermarkets. It is definitely getting easier to be wheat and dairy free!

Winter….

So winter is approaching and the last few years have seen snow and real cold snaps! Brrrr and Grrrrr.

We really do not like the cold weather. The cotton suits are back and extra thick dollops of cream. But worst of all I can see Ayla’s skin getting more itchy and dry each week. I definitely have a better understanding now than when she was little, and I feel that at least during the summer we know that we have it pretty much under control so it’s 6 months of keeping on top things.

Now it’s time to get prepared. Order new cotton suits, cotton polo necks and make sure we have an endless supply of cream!

Silky smooth!! :-)

So I haven’t posted for ages again…sorry to anyone reading. But truth me told eczema has taken a real back seat in our lives. I barely notice that it is there lurking on the skin. Summer started late….probably didn’t see any sun until late June….but bam when it came it really came!!

In July we enjoyed some gorgeous hot weather which went on and on for a good few weeks. So I stripped Ayla off and applied just enough sunscreen to stop any burning and let the sun do its magic. Within a week Ayla’s skin was noticeably better and after 3 weeks he skin was silky smooth. To the point that even the teachers were commenting on her lovely skin. With the decent summer and a dose of salt water on a camping trip Ayla has the best skin I have seen on her since she was a babe in arms.

For the first time in three years Ayla is sleeping without her sleep suits :-) I have been slapping on huge dollops of cream for years and years then putting tight suits on and all of a sudden we are down to just centraben and cotton pjs. Gettting ready for bed has become a whole lot quicker.

I know for some people with eczema the summer months can be awful but for us it works. The impact it has on Aylas skin, which has a knock on effect on life in general has even made me consider emigrating….not the only reason but it would difficult go on the pro list!