About Our Contributors
The Adults with Allergies blog has a team of contributors across Canada. These are all adults who have worked with Food Allergy Canada on providing knowledge, advice and tips to other allergic adults. If you are interested in joining the writing team and being a contributor for our blog, please contact us.
Meet the Team:
Erika L. – 25
I was born in Montreal, Quebec, and I am fluent in French. I moved to Victoria, British Columbia, and have called it home for the last few years. I have severe food allergies to peanuts, tree nuts, soy, and all legumes (peas, beans etc.). I’ve had these allergies my entire life. I am extremely fortunate, as my family, friends and colleagues are all very understanding of my allergies and support me in any way they can. I have never let allergies get in the way of my life. Though I’ve run into a few challenges throughout the years, I feel that these challenges have made me more confident and have taught me a great deal about what is important in life. When I heard about this blog, I was 100 % on-board, keen to share my personal tips and experiences, and keen to learn from other young adults who also have food allergies. I love to write and have a few blogs of my own; so I didn’t think twice when I was asked to be involved with this blog. I hope that this blog will help young adults feel less alone and feel more confident in terms of taking control and not letting their allergies define who they are. I also hope that this blog sparks conversations between young adults in terms of talking about their experiences and sharing their tips and tricks. We can, after all, build a network and learn from each other.
Caitlyn P. – 23
Arianne K. – 24
I am currently residing in Ottawa, Ontario. I’ve had an extensive career in communications over the past five years. I hold an Honours Bachelor degree in Public Relations and Marketing from the University of Ottawa, and a degree in Media and Communications from Algonquin College. I have worked in both the not-for-profit and corporate sectors, and currently work as a Communications Strategist for an international racing company.
I was diagnosed as at risk for anaphylaxis, from peanuts and nuts, at the age of three. I have been actively involved in the food allergy community and become an advocate for food allergy safety from a young age. Now, as an adult, I hope to pursue an environment of understanding and safety for adults in public, professional, and private aspects of their daily lives .
Using this blog, I hope, as a community, we accomplish a new level of understanding that seeks to overcome some misconceptions about food allergies.
Saverio M. – 20
Hi everyone. My name is Saverio and I am from Toronto, Ontario. I have been at risk for anaphylaxis to tree nuts (specifically hazelnuts and walnuts), for the past 10 years. I believe that one of the best strategies to manage your allergies is to create awareness in the community – to let people know just how serious anaphylaxis is. It is my hope to share any tips that I have accumulated (from travelling, high school life, and university/business school life) and share it with the community at large. It is also my hope to learn from others about how they manage their allergies.
Aaron S. – 27
Greetings. I am Aaron and I currently reside in Calgary, Alberta. I was diagnosed with multiple food allergies, milk, eggs, shellfish, and numerous nuts, at the age of two. Academically, I hold an M.A. from the University of Saskatchewan and I have been professionally involved with a variety of communications roles (research, writing, editing) within numerous industries.
I hope this blog will provide a valuable resource for individuals living with food allergies. Crucially, I think that sharing our experiences, and the methods we utilize to face the challenges that accompany living with food allergies, will both provide much-needed advice for young adults living with allergies, and create necessary dialogues that will ultimately enrich the lives of those living with allergies.
I also sincerely hope that this blog engages parents and individuals of all ages. Put simply, children and teens with allergies will grow up. And they will face the challenges and situations we talk about on this blog. The key reason I got involved in this project is to make a difference in the lives of those that have and will encounter the same challenges I have experienced. That difference, I think, begins with having resources like this blog available to the public at large and providing a platform for these important conversations to continue and, in some cases, begin.
Dylan B. – 27
Hey everyone, my name is Dylan and I currently live in Aurora, Ontario. I have been allergic to peanuts and tree nuts since I was 9-years-old. I write about food allergies because I enjoy sharing my knowledge and experiences about growing up with food allergies. As someone who grew into my allergies, and learned how to manage them on-the-fly, I think resources like this are very useful and, quite frankly, fun to share and read! I like to spread awareness and show others that life with a severe food allergy feels just as normal to me as the life of anyone else with or without a food allergy. I really like the subtleties of writing and I’m always open to new discussions about my posts, so comment and ask away!
Nicole K. – 23
Hello. My name is Nicole. I was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. I attended the University of Guelph-Humber and received a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Early Childhood as well as a diploma in Early Childhood Education. Afterward, I continued my studies at York University where I obtained my Bachelors of Education. I am currently employed as an Elementary Teacher with the Toronto District School Board.
As a young child, I was diagnosed with allergies to all nuts, seafood, sesame seeds, peas, beans, and eggs. By the age of 8, I outgrew my allergy to eggs. I am still allergic the rest, though! I am also asthmatic and have eczema.
I wanted to contribute to this project because I believe there is a lot to be learned through the experiences of others. Also, it is nice knowing that I am not alone in the situations that I face. I find it comforting to know that there are others who face similar challenges. Together, we can create a strong network of support and work together to find helpful strategies that we can apply to our daily lives.
I hope this blog will help those who are currently hesitant about voicing concerns about their allergies. I hope it will help them find a voice and be able to advocate for their needs – especially in the workplace.
Jason B. – 28
My name is Jason and I’m from Richmond Hill Ontario. When I was very young I experienced my first anaphylactic reaction when my mom introduced me to a peanut butter sandwich. Since then I have been diagnosed with allergies to peanuts and tree nuts although I have outgrown some of my tree nut allergies.
I love to write and I am delighted to join this team because over the course I’ve my life I’ve dealt with so many of the highs and lows of living with allergies that I want to share my experience. Over the course of my life the allergic community has experienced some tremendous changes and now projects like this blog are making the awareness better than ever. I hope that I can provide you with some lessons from my experiences and an entertaining read as well!
Shivangi S. – 23
My name is Shivangi – but most people call me Shiv (much easier to say, as you could imagine), and I am from Toronto, Ontario. I have been severely allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, fish/seafood, wheat/barley, and buckwheat since I was born – you can imagine the reaction I get from people when I recite that list! However, that’s only a small part of who I am. I am also the biggest Toronto Blue Jays fan you will likely meet or hear of, an avid cruiser, and an auditor.
Since I have grown up with food allergies, I have a lot of experiences (both good and bad!) through childhood, my teenage years, university, and now as a working adult. I am hoping to share my experiences, as well as learn about other peoples’ experiences, to help others in the same situation, as well as myself.
I consider myself from Northern Ontario. Born in Thunder, from a tiny city called Longlac and grew up in New Liskeard. I’ve lived in Waterloo for my undergrad at Wilfrid Laurier University. I taught two years of English abroad in Asia. I came back to Ottawa and got my Bachelors of Education and have been in Sudbury, Ontario for a couple of years now.
I am fluently bilingual in both French and English.
I have a very rare allergy situation that I hope in sharing my experiences, I’ll be able to help those with allergies and those without allergies. I have was diagnosed with OAS, also known as Oral Allergy Syndrome. I describe it as serious hay fever. I’m allergic to pollen, trees, grass, dust and etc. These have similar proteins to some vegetables and fruits. So whatever has the similar proteins can cause an allergy. My allergy extends to whatever also eats those said allergens, for example I am allergic to Chicken. My allergies can be a challenge at times because they are very seasonal. They are a fairly recent discovery, only named within the last twenty years. I love fruits and vegetables. I am a lover of food in general, but I haven’t let these allergies stop me from living. They’ve made things a challenge, but there’s always hope and there’s always a way to work it out.
I’ve met some wonderful friends and family, who’ve been nothing but supportive. I am thankful for all of those who’ve helped in my learning journey of my own body and allergies.