Ask The Allergista: How did you know you were allergic to coffee and do you know of a deodorant without PG?

ask_the_allergista

Q:

When you found out you were allergic to coffee, did they do a blood test? I had a blood test a couple of years ago, but they focused on the usual culprits-environmental allergens. I already knew from when I was very little that I was allergic to cats, dogs, horses, guinea pigs, dust mites, trees, grasses, pollen, ragweed, cows milk, peanuts & perfumes. I figured out by keeping a food diary that I was gluten intoloerant and found that red wine gives me headaches. Tough to deal with being a wine supplier rep for many years. I think it's a separate blood test for food specific allergens. I've had so many prick tests over the years and the skin blotches from immediate contact to an allergen. I think the blood test is more accurate for the actual things you are ingesting. I'm sorry you have so many skin allergies. It really sucks to have to deal with that daily. You are very brave and turning this into your life calling in order help others with unfortunate allergies. Have you found a deodorant without PG? I use Dove.

A:

Thank you for the kind words! You are so sweet :-) Regarding coffee, I actually wasn't tested for that one. After my diagnosis, I became very familiar with what my skin reactions looked like (clear bubbles, red bumps, red blotches). One morning, I was sitting at my computer and had been drinking coffee all morning long. I had NOTHING else in my system because I'm often not hungry in the morning. My hands were getting itchy and I looked at them only to see the clear bubbles popping up on my fingers. Since I hadn't been touching nickel or eating anything else, I knew that the coffee was the culprit. It could be because of: the actual coffee beans, caffeine, or additives/flavorings in the coffee. I haven't had a drop since (but I would looooove to). I know coffee is rather harsh on the body in general, so with my auto-immune issues, it's probably best to leave it alone anyways.

When I was tested for different food allergies and other things like lactose intolerance and celiac disease, the food allergy testing was done via skin prick tests and injecting it under my skin. The lactose intolerance and celiac disease tests were blood tests. My chemical/medicinal allergies were tested with patch testing on my back where they leave the patches on for a few days.

Regarding deodorant without propylene glycol, I actually HAVE found some great stuff and it works better than anything I used before my allergies. I use VMV Hypoallergenics "Essence Skin Saving Antiperspirant" along with Dessert Essence "Tea Tree Oil Deodorant". You can read more about those here.

I wish you all the best. Thanks for writing me!

Sincerely,

The Allergista