Busting out!

Good evening folks,

website-under-construction1c

I have been making changes, HUGE changes, to pull myself out of the abyss.  It has taken a lot of work, practice, focus and dedication and I am pleased to announce that it is working, beautifully and effectively.  I am reclaiming my life.  In the recent weeks I have been to a local health food store (multiple times), Earth Fare, Office Depot, Books-A-Million, AND T-Mobile!  I have used a brand new phone, my new computer….  I’ve eaten in a restaurant, been around others eating, been around MANY different fumes and scents and I am doing so great!

I’m sorry for not posting, anything….but I am really busy living now.  I hope you all can understand.  I will check back here once a month, to update on what we’re doing, where we’re going and what we’re eating.  Life is not just changing, life is actually happening now.  I’m living now.   It is SO exciting.  Thanks for all of the support you guys have given us the past few years.  It’s been a struggle but that struggle is almost over for us.  We have found what works and we are throwing ourselves in 100%.

If you are interested in what I’m doing, you can check out DNRSystem.  Skeptical about it working?  Yeah, I was too….for over a year and a half and refused to order it or try it.  BUT I gotta tell ya, it works and I am living proof.  I don’t get paid to sell it….but I am singing it’s praises.  Now, if you will excuse me.  I’m about to go eat some apples, grapes and cheese and then gorge on an omelet and brownies and play with my brand new cell phone (the other new phone didn’t work so we got a new one).  Bye-bye issues….I won’t miss you at all.

Corn Allergy from ACAAI

The American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (ACAAI) posted this gem of an article recently on their website under “Types of Food Allergies.”  Though the “ingredients to avoid” section could go into more detail, I find their thoughts on Corn Allergy, the difficulty to diagnose the allergy, and the manner in which to confirm the allergy to be refreshing.  This week I have read more stories of parents who are frustrated with medical care professional who still do not believe in Corn Allergy.  Some of these medical care professional just graduated last year and were told that “Corn Allergy does not exist.”  What do you do with that?!  How exactly are you supposed to entrust your child’s health to someone who doesn’t believe they are reacting to an allergen?  This professional would probably balk at the idea that your child would react to corn derivatives in medication and refuse to give you the proper prescription for your child.  Been there…bought a postcard.  Riddle me this:  How is it possible for one food to have allergenic properties but not another?  Why is corn so different than any other allergen?

I know, I’m preaching to the choir here.  Here’s the article.  What are you thoughts?

Corn allergy can be difficult to diagnose using standard skin or blood tests due to cross reactivity between corn and grass pollens, and other seeds and grain.

Symptoms may range from mild to severe. A severe life-threatening allergic reaction is known as anaphylaxis, which is rapid in onset and may cause death.

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Treatment for corn allergy includes strict avoidance of corn ingredients.

Corn allergy should be confirmed by an oral food challenge, administered by an allergist in a clinical setting, before an elimination diet is followed.

A Brief Recapitulate for Hidden Corn

I wanted to quickly re-post a few older blogs for anyone new to corn allergy or new to CornFreeLifestyle blog.  Please make a note of these links, save the documents as PDFs on your computers, or copy and paste any and all information that may be relevant to you.  These documents will help you when dealing with companies concerning any potential hidden corn and knowing which questions to ask in order to have more accurate answers.

If you’re new to corn allergy, I encourage you to read my New to Corn Allergy page.  There is a wealth of information there that has proven to be invaluable to me and my daughter.

Document from the Illinois Corn Association concerning the usage of corn in products

List of “allowed ingredients” in organic food processing

Corn usage poster from Center for Crops Utilization Research from Iowa State University

Corn usage poster from Casco, the Canadian business unit of Corn Products International, Inc.

Xanthan gum and corn allergy

Vaccines and potential corn derivatives

Chemurgy and products made from corn

The difference between natural and organic and how corn can still hide in organic products

Corn Allergy and Autism from Vickie Ewell

According to recent research conducted by researchers at UAB and more current estimates by the CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (2008 AASP Data).  I would like to pair this research with the recent article (posted to the Delphi Forum by Eldi) from Vickie Ewell at Autism/Asperger’s Syndrome.  I am unaware if the CDC has investigated the effects of food allergens/intolerance/sensitivites on the symptoms of Austism.  If you have any information concerning that research I would appreciate you sharing it in the comments section.

It is high time corn derivatives are labeled, not just in food and beverages, but also in emergency and non-emergency medical equipment, prescription and over the counter medications, office supplies, household cleaning items, plastics, paints, cigarette, and the list goes on.

Please take a moment and consider joining this Write-In Campaign (click here for link to Campaign) to get corn and corn derivatives labeled.  This can save lives and make the lives of those affected actually livable.

Corn Allergy and Autism Dietary Intervention by Vickie Ewell

Dietary intervention for autism can improve autistic behaviors and symptoms. While a GFCF diet is the most popular, corn allergy may interfere with results.

Dietary interventions for autism are popular treatment options among biomedical physicians and parents, but their usefulness is limited to an individual’s food and chemical sensitivities as well as health problems and imbalances. Like any autism treatment, the effectiveness of dietary restrictions range from a complete reversal of symptoms and behaviors to absolutely no effect at all. The degree to which diet helps requires total compliance to the program and elimination of all potential cross-contamination, but it also requires you pinpoint an individual’s allergens accurately.

While a gluten-free casein-free diet (GFCF) is the most popular dietary option among the parents of autistic children, additional allergies such as corn intolerance can make it seem like dietary intervention isn’t working. Since wheat, milk, soy, corn and eggs are the most common allergens found among autistics, before giving up on dietary treatments, it’s a good idea to investigate all potential sensitivities and allergies.

Pinning Allergies and Sensitivities is Difficult

During an allergic response to food, the body interprets harmless protein or other molecules as a threat. This causes the body’s immune system to make antibodies to fight against these molecules. Once the body makes antibodies, the threatening food particles are called allergens. The first few times the body encounters allergens, autistic symptoms and behavioral issues might not result. It takes a certain number of antibodies built up in the blood to trigger an allergy or sensitivity.

As the level of antibodies rises, even slight exposures to allergens can result in extreme reactions. So can emotional stress, overexertion, fatigue and severe weather conditions. Autistic individuals can become more sensitive and begin reacting to foods, chemicals and other substances they didn’t react to before. Air pollution, scented household and personal care products, a combination of allergens and heavy ingestions of one particular food, chemical or substance can create an environment that is ripe for overreactions.

While you or your autistic child may not actually be allergic or sensitive to the various chemicals that can cause the body to manufacture antibodies, natural gas, car exhaust, smog, tobacco smoke and the PCBs in plastic can prime the immune system for future allergic responses to other things. This threshold requirement makes it difficult to pin down exact causes for erratic, emotional behaviors and physical reactions because a child or adult with autism might not always react visibly when they have eaten or been exposed to an allergen.

The Problem of Hidden Corn Derivatives

Discovering the places where corn and corn derivatives hide is essential to eliminating them from the diet. However, U.S. law doesn’t require manufacturers to list ingredients on the label that have been legally determined to be proprietary information. Since corn is not one of the eight major allergens, this trade secret status is often used. Manufacturers do not have to reveal whether a natural flavoring or the citric acid in a product came from corn.

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More difficult than discerning generic ingredient terms is that manufacturers do not have to list or disclose processing aids. A processing aid is not considered an ingredient. Eggs, vegetables and poultry can be washed in a corn-based cleaning solution without that information being available on the package. In addition, the package itself can be dusted with cornstarch to keep its contents from sticking to the wrapper. These types of practices are common and make it extremely difficult to guarantee that any diet is completely corn free.

A GFCF Diet Can Trigger Corn Allergies

While some autistic children are born with a corn allergy, others develop problems due to the abundance of corn and its derivatives in typical American meals. A gluten-free diet uses alternative grains other than wheat, barley and rye plus starches such as tapioca, potato and cornstarch to replace ordinary wheat flour in baked goods and pastas. It uses vegetable gums such as xanthan gum to help imitate the properties of gluten. Corn oils, dairy-free margarines and corn-based cereals are encouraged. [read more]

Read the entire article here.

New Data on Autism Spectrum Disorders from the CDC

CDC estimates 1 in 88 children (11.3 per 1,000) has been identified with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

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This marks a 23% increase since our last report in 2009. And, a 78% increase since our first report in 2007. Some of the increase is due to the way children are identified, diagnosed and served in their local communities, although exactly how much is due to these factors in unknown.

The number of children identified with ASDs varied widely across the 14 ADDM Network sites, from 1 in 47 (21.2 per 1,000) to 1 in 210 (4.8 per 1,000).

ASDs are almost 5 times more common among boys (1 in 54) than among girls (1 in 252).

The largest increases over time were among Hispanic children (110%) and black children (91%). We suspect that some of this increase is due to greater awareness and better identification among these groups. However, this finding explains only part of the increase over time, as more children are being identified in all groups. [read more]

Dr. Doris Rapp on Phil Donahue

Everyone should watch this.  Yes it is 45 minutes long but it is well worth watching and internalizing.  This was recorded in 1989.  1989!  I still have doctors that say they’ve “never heard of what’s happening to me,” and “it’s all in my head, I might need anti-depressants.”  Perhaps one day someone will be brave enough to help people like me and not medicate us into stupors (at which point we still react but suffer in silence).

Is Castile Soap What We’ve Needed All Along?

We’re still having some difficulty with removing fumes from the hair, clothing, skin, etc of individuals visiting our home.

A fair amount of members on the Delphi Forum Members use the Dr. Bronner’s line of castile soap.  I looked into the soaps last year but was deterred from ordering them because of the inclusion of tocopherol and citric acid in the ingredients list.  I know now, thanks to the efforts of others on the forum, that the tocopherol is derived from sunflower and the citric acid from tapioca.  We cannot consume sunflower however we might be able to tolerate others who use this product.

This might be exactly what we need to make others safe for visiting our home!  Erica, what are you talking about now?  Well, I’ll tell you all a little back story!  Back in September 2009 I decided to “go natural.”  Going natural is basically avoiding the chemical treatment of one’s hair.  June 2010 I cut all of my hair off (I kept an inch).  I also realized, around the same time, that things were going downhill quickly for my health and the Yipiyuk constantly seemed to be in pain.  Enter the complete understanding and life changing realization of corn allergy.  I realized that my favorite everything were making us more and more ill, this included my hair products.  The smell of them bothered me so much it brought me to tears.  I also noticed that my hair itself made me extremely ill.  the smell lingered and would not dissipate.  I began researching the silicones and parabens used in hair products (as well as lotions and soaps) and I realized they were the issue with removing scents skin, hair and clothing.  I’ll explain how below.  I had to purge my house of all toiletries containing silicones and parabens.  The only way to remove residual silicone coating from my hair was to use a “clarifying” shampoo, something that would strip the chemicals off of the hair shaft.  After I understood this and found safe corn-free toiletries (that were also silicone and paraben free), I let this information be purged from my brain.

…I shouldn’t have allowed myself to forget that information.  This information is actually key in understanding why some hair care products, lotions, and laundry detergents NEVER seem to wash away.  Silicones, Dimethicone is seen a lot in hair and lotion products, coat the surface of the hair, skin and clothing with a thin hydrophobic coating.  The problem with silicones is they are used in everything.  It is almost as bad as corn.

“Dimethicone is a silicone based polymer which works by covering hair with a thin hydrophobic (water-proof) coating. This coating helps reduce the porosity of the hair which makes it less likely to absorb humidity; helps reduce moisture loss from the inside of the hair; and lubricates the surface of the hair so it feel smoother and combs easier.

Dimethicone, a mid-weight silicone provides the most smoothing effect but can also be hard to wash out.”

Multiple Uses of Silicones


Color cosmetics, sun protection creams, hair care products and antiperspirants and deodorants all benefit from silicones. Laundry detergents, fabric softeners, kitchen and bathroom cleansers, polishes and waxes are gentle, effective and aesthetically appealing because of silicones.

  • The elasticity in silicone oils improves the spreadability and smoothness of facial cosmetics, lotions, cleansing creams and antiperspirant and deodorant products
  • Silicones help lipsticks, eye shadows and blushes stay on the skin for extended periods, as well as maintain their color.
  • Silicones in shampoos and conditioners add foam stabilization, better shine, better body and softness to hair.
  • Silicones in hair styling products improve control.
  • Silicones make aesthetically pleasing and effective antiperspirants and deodorants that do not leave a residue. Silicones act as a non-cooling, non-stinging barrier that reduces the white residue and tacky feel of antiperspirants in deodorants. Silicones also help make clear antiperspirant gels possible.
  • Silicones as anti-foam agents in laundry detergents ensure foam control during a wash cycle, keeping the detergent in the washing machine.
  • Silicones in fabric softeners help preserve fabric “newness” because of their softening properties. Silicones’ elasticity helps smooth out wrinkles.
  • Silicones enhance shine, spread easily and do not chemically react to surface materials, so they are ideal components of polishes and cleaners used on household surfaces such as floors and kitchen and bathroom counter.  Silicones also enhance shoe cleaning and polishing products

Do you see why I’m kicking myself for forgetting this information?  It all makes sense now.  When you mix the use of corn with silicones you realize that it is almost impossible to wash the corn away.  It’s in a protective coating.  It’s like an evil villain with a force field.  We need something potent enough to break through the layers of silicones that are present on people’s clothing, skin, and hair (hair and clothing are definitely the worst offenders) that will allow the soap a chance to clean away the corn derivatives.  The castile soap, diluted as little as possible, might be exactly want we need to eliminate the silicones and parabens, thereby allowing us to clean away the corn derivatives that are used in the products that make us so very ill.  Pure castile soap is an excellent clarifying cleaner.  It strips the hair/skin of any build-up that might exist, including from -cones (silicones) and parabens.  This is exactly what we need to remove the residual chemicals that everyone coos over.  “Oooo, girl!  Your ___ smells so good.”  When I hear this now, I run.

I really hope this works.  I will have to try it on a willing subject, possibly Aunt Nichole or Uncle Patrick… =).  The effectiveness of the castile soap for removing residual traces of product will help me to decide whether or not to include the Dr. Bronner’s Baby-Mild Unscented soap in our “Yipiyuk Safe” packets for family and friends.  I need something that is going to strip the silicones and parabens from the skin and hair.

UPDATE:  MizCastle, from MySoCornedLife, uses the castile soap for this exact purpose with great results.

Corn Free Bakery? I think not…

The blog post is not meant to offend the owners Sweet Freedom Bakery, I realize they are just going off of information given to them by their supplier, however wrong it may be.  A friend of mine on Facebook sent this link to me and suggested I check it out.  I did.  We can’t eat from here, they use grain, coconut sugar, and agave in every single thing they cook.  We would be very ill from eating here.  I was going to just move on until then I saw the words “CORN FREE” at the top of the page and two more words included in almost every recipe…”xanthan gum.”

We all know about xanthan gum, right?  So, I called them and surmissed that they had NO idea what the xanthan gum was made of, at which point they gave me the number to their supplier.  The supplier (T.I.C. Gum) tried to explain to me how it was made but wouldn’t tell me what carbohydrate was used in the fermentation process.  You know what that means…  it’s grown on corn.  Yep, that four letter word.  They finally told me after I kept repeating the same question.  According to them there is no corn protein left so, according to textbook allergic reactions, one shouldn’t react…  my body didn’t read that particular text book and treats xanthan gum just like every other corn derivative.

Proceed at your own risk, but keep in mind, someone allergic to peanuts would avoid xanthan gum grown on peanuts…  Why eat xanthan gum grown on corn if you’re allergic to corn?