BY MEGAN CROUCH
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is launching a potentially life changing campaign #easytoASK aiming to change the experiences of young people suffering with life-threatening allergies.
To some, food allergies and intolerances control them in every way- stopping them from socialising and making them feel like a burden to the people they surround.
In a means of combatting this issue the #easytoASK campaign (supported also by the British Dietetic Association) aimed at 16-24-year-olds sets to break down the barriers and encourage those with allergies and intolerances to feel more confident when eating out, ordering food or using shared kitchens. 60% of young adults with a food allergy or intolerance avoid eating out because of their condition with 55% of these when going out again return to the same place. To stop the burden weighing down so heavily, we all must become more aware of how our actions can impact those carrying around a potential death sentence.
Heather Hancock, FSA Chairman said: “We’ve seen real progress in how food businesses approach customers with allergies.” However, it’s not just food businesses who need to change their attitudes.
Sufferers have made it clear that people need to be more understanding of how serious these allergies can be. Oli, a 22-year-old student says he has to isolate himself in a desperate attempt to avoid being hospitalised again. “I have accepted there are certain things I cannot do”. Elizabeth, 23, also a student shares that she has to be on high alert at all times, constantly feeling like she has to apologise for herself. People suffering with allergies and intolerances don’t choose to do so, it’s not a crash diet or a crazy meal plan, their lives genuinely could be at risk. No one wants to live in fear. We should all feel like its #easytoASK and easy to talk to people about their struggles.
To find out more about the #easytoASK campaign follow @foodgov on twitter.