Explaining severe food allergies to kids is a challenge; explaining to their peers is even harder. Whether you're a parent just trying to get a handle on your child's severe food allergies, or a teen learning to self-advocate, there are a ton of books out there for you.
Here's a round-up of great books about severe allergies and anaphylaxis for kids of all ages (and parents) that can be purchased or borrowed from your local library:
Allie the Allergic Elephant by Nicole Smith
Allie teaches children and adults about allergic reactions, and helps people understand the severity of food allergies. This book discusses how peanuts can be hidden in foods, and how kids can say, “No, thank you” to foods offered to them by children and adults.
The BugaBees: Friends With Food Allergies by Amy Recob
A cute rhyming tale, and beautifully illustrated, this book is about eight little friends with different food allergies. It teaches young kids how to deal with their allergies at home, at school, and out and about.
The BugyBops: Friends for All Time by Amy Recob
I love that this book brings friends into the mix! It teaches kids how they can keep their allergic friends safe through things like hand-washing and reading labels. It covers severe food allergies to things like peanuts, shellfish, milk, eggs, soy and wheat, and even discusses cross-contamination, signs of allergic reactions, use of EpiPen and more! The website for this series is also entertaining.
Chad the Allergic Chipmunk by Nicole Smith
Cody the Allergic Cow by Nicole Smith
Ricky is a three-year-old boy with a severe food allergy. This book shows kids how to stay safe when at the playground or birthday parties, and teaches them to always ask before they eat anything. It also has helpful tips for parents when searching for babysitters or preschools, and when eating at restaurants.
Starting School with a Food Allergy by Christina Black
The No Biggie Bunch by Heather Mehra, Kerry McManama, and Michael Kline
Clowes is one of the only authors to address the emotional impact of severe food allergies on kids. This book discusses how integral food is to our society’s celebrations, and how exclusion can impact kids. It’s a great way to teach other kids and adults how to be more inclusive.
The Peanut Butter Jam by Elizabeth Sussman Nassau
The Peanut Pickle by Jessica Jacbos
This book helps kids learn to explain their severe allergies to others, and how to deal with potentially awkward situations that may arise. It also has a guide for parents to help their kids deal with their severe allergies.
The Princess and the Peanut Allergy by Wendy McClure
This is the story of a little girl who is invited to a friend’s birthday party but can’t go anywhere near the cake because of her severe nut allergy. It’s a good story about how friends can help kids with severe allergies.
Peanut Butter, Milk, and Other Deadly Threats: What You Should Know About Food Allergies by Sherri Mabry Gordon
Allergic Girl: Adventures in Living Well with Food Allergies by Sloane Miller
Food allergies can be life-threatening, and parents are often completely overwhelmed when their child is diagnosed. This book, by another parent of an allergic child, covers all kinds of situations, experiences, and feelings parents may have when dealing with severe allergies. It covers everything from identifying allergies to developing community awareness. Very handy!
Feeding Eden: The Trials and Triumphs of a Food Allergy Family by Susan Weissman
Weissman has a written poignant memoir of her son’s potentially deadly food allergies and has captured everything a parent of an allergic child feels. From diagnosis through management, her story will definitely hit home with allergy parents.
Food Allergies for Dummies by Robert Wood, M.D. and Joe Kraynak
This inexpensive download is a great intro to severe food allergies for parents. It’s such a daunting diagnosis that can have a huge impact on families, but severe food allergies are totally manageable, and Smith discusses finding the new “normal.”
Hope you find the books as informative and helpful as we have!
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