Guest blog spot from leading allergy dietitian, Tanya Wright

TW recipe book 7

Tanya Wright is a registered Dietitian specialising in the diagnosis and management of food allergy and other food hypersensitivity reactions in children and adults with gastrointestinal, dermatological and respiratory symptoms. Tanya has been my childrens’ dietitian for the last four and half years and has helped me through countless trials and errors , particularly for Calvin when his diet became increasingly restrictive and when we were trying to persuade him to eat. She’s been an absolute diamond  and I know  Calvin would have been tube fed many months before  now, were it not for Tanya’s steady and positive guidance. She’s fantastic at sourcing ingredients, adapting recipes, understanding allergies and rare bowel diseases and persuading food averse children to eat, whilst knowing  how difficult it is for the parent.  Although we inconveniently moved further from London I still travel a long way to see her because specialist allergy dietitians are a rare breed in the UK and I can’t bear taking my chances with someone else.  Tanya has kindly agreed to do a Guest Blog Spot for me and has included some of her published recipes. You can contact her using the form below if you want to get hold of her invaluable, easy-to-use  little cookbooks, which I have turned to on many occasions.

One of Tanya's published recipes

One of Tanya’s published recipes

10 Top Tips To Help Manage A Restricted Diet by Tanya Wright

1. Identifying suitable foods by reading all food labels carefully

2. Avoid foods where ingredients are unknown

Delicatessen foods, bakery items or butchers pies/sausages do not often have an ingredients list because they are sold unpackaged. These foods may contain hidden unexpected ingredients. From December 2014 there are 14 allergens that will have to be listed on these foods and any other foods sold unpackaged such as in restaurants, hot dog vans, food markets and pubs etc. These 14 foods will all have to be labelled within the European Union ( extending  the current law which only covers packaged foods). The 14 foods are:

Milk (dairy), egg, wheat, gluten containing grains, soya, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, celery, mustard, lupin, fin-fish, shellfish (crustaceans), molluscs, sulphur dioxide (sulphites)

3. Avoidance – complete or partial?

Some individuals can tolerate small amounts of a food without getting any symptoms and others have to avoid all traces. The level of cooking can also affect tolerance. Up to 80% of egg allergy patients will tolerate egg when it is well baked in a cake or biscuit but all will react to scrambled egg.

4. foods with alternative products

To preserve nutrition, taste and variety, foods that are excluded should be replaced with alternatives.

5. Adapting recipes

Most recipes can be easily adapted, especially now there is a good range of alternative foods to cook with.

6. New recipes

Being open minded and trying some new recipes is a good idea.

7. Being organised

As with any special diet, it is essential to plan meals and snacks ahead, especially for children who need to eat as soon as they are hungry.

8. Eating out – keep it simple

Eating out is always a pleasure – or at least it should be. Those on a restricted diet will need to communicate clearly to the person catering for them. A list of foods that CAN be eaten is usually more helpful than those that cannot, and gives a positive message.

9. Going abroad

With the added language barrier, eating in a foreign country can be more risky. Some decide to self- cater, whilst others risk eating out alongside their dictionary. Translation cards are available to help with this. Many special diet foods are now available in supermarkets abroad but not all so taking favourites along in the hold luggage is a useful tip.

10. Nutrition

A dietitian will help balance a restricted diet so that important nutrients are not missing. Sometimes nutritional supplements are recommended but often they are not needed if the diet can be adapted successfully.


If individuals are prescribed medicines these should be checked as they may contain ingredients that are not tolerated such as lactose, maize or wheat. This should be discussed with the prescribing Doctor or a pharmacist.

All medicines should be taken as prescribed when they are required and allergy rescue medications such as inhalers, adrenaline injectors and antihistamines should be available at all times if they have been prescribed. This means finding a way to carry them and making sure this is done.

Useful resources  for special diet/ingredient product directory, recipes and information on restricted diets     support for families affected by Eosinophilic disorders.   information, helpline and translation cards for food allergies and more

Anaphylaxis Campaign – information resource and

NHS choices information on food allergy and intolerances – useful recipe resource and information about substitute ingredients.

TW recie book 7

Tanya Wright BSc Honours MSc RD Specialist Dietitian – Biography 2013

Tanya  works in the Paediatric Allergy Service at Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation trust – a centre of excellence, and also within Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. She is a committee member of the Food Allergy and Intolerance Group of the BDA (resources), a Steering group committee member for the International Dietitians Allergy Group INDANA, on the scientific board of the Anaphylaxis Campaign and an advisor to Allergy UK.

She is author of several books and recipe books; Food Allergies: Enjoying Life with a Severe Food Allergy (Class Publishing 2001, 2007), ‘Allergy-free Food’ (Hamlyn 2002) milk free cookbook for infants (Cow & Gate 2006, Danone 2011), I’m Hungry – Easy Family Recipes free from… (2011, 2nd Edn 2012, 3rd Edn 2012) and has contributed to books entitled ‘latex Intolerance’ (CRC press 2005) and Food Hypersensitivity (Blackwell 2010) and various other publications. She regularly lectures at National conferences and on both the post graduate Masters Allergy Courses at Imperial College London, for the Allergy Academy and many other undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

She writes articles and recipes for special diet food companies, formula milk companies, magazines, newspapers, websites and supermarket chains. She is a regular consultant to the food industry, to Allergy Support Associations and to other health professionals. She also runs special diet cookery courses for individuals and healthcare professionals.

TW recipe book5

Beautifully presented A5 spirally bound gloss cookbook with 66 colour plates of sweet & savoury everyday family meals. Snacks & treats that are very easy to prepare. All recipes are free from milk (dairy & lactose), egg, soya, wheat & gluten (rye, barley) & oats.

Also includes information on lifestyle issues and feeding fussy eaters, with detailed information on replacement ingredients.

To order a copy:  Please send this completed form with a cheque for £10.50 payable to Tanya Wright. (Price of book £9.00 plus £1.50 P&P)

To:  Tanya Wright   106 High Street, Great Missenden, Bucks HP16 OBE

or email

Now available online:

Name:            __________________________________________________________________

Address:   _____________________________________________________________________


Email:      _____________________________________________________________________

TW recipe book 6TW recipe book3

About mumannie123

mum, wife (when I remember), journalist, Queen of poo, self taught allergy cook, totally unqualified nurse, likes to fundraise for research and raise awareness into rare childhood bowel diseases, self-appointed expert on accessing education and healthcare for my child, wants to signpost for others who may be struggling, thinks her jokes are funny even if no-one else does.

Posted on September 9, 2013, in Blatant product plugs!, Feeding the allergic child, Recipes and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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