We are Brian and Veronika, an international couple (USA + Czech) who started several years ago a gluten-free and dairy-free diet as a consequence of Brian’s Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE) condition.
This blog is a combination of my passion for cooking with Brian’s food allergy problems. I love food and I have been cooking since my early childhood. I learned the secrets of Czech cuisines from my mom and grandma. I was excited to learn more about American food, experiment with new recipes, and enjoy the variety of ingredients that are available in the USA. However, my view on cooking and food completely changed once I met my husband Brian. Brian was diagnosed at 29 with Eosinophilic Esophagitis, which is a chronic disorder of the digestive system when eosinophils (immune cells) migrate into the esophagus and cause inflammation. This inflammation further triggers the growth of fibrotic tissue and the esophagus is unable to stretch properly. There is also furrowing. As symptoms of EoE, Brian experienced difficulty swallowing food (dysphagia) with common episodes of food being stuck in his throat and leaving him in very dangerous situations.
One way how to control EoE is to eliminate the source (allergen) of the inflammation from the diet. To identify the key allergens for Brian, we started with a 6-food elimination diet which we eliminated the 6 most common allergens (dairy, wheat, soy, eggs, nuts, and seafood/shellfish) and then gradually added one by one back to Brian’s diet. We successfully identified gluten and dairy to be the allergens causing Brian’s problems and decided to commit to a gluten-free and dairy-free life.
However, we faced many challenges with this new diet. It was not easy at first to adapt my cooking habits, substitute certain ingredients, and stay creative in the kitchen. We were almost certain that we will have to forever give up some of our favorite dishes containing gluten and dairy. Fortunately, with time and a lot of research, we were able to find new recipes and adapt old family recipes to our new gluten-free and dairy-free life.
The purpose of this blog is to help others with similar dietary restrictions, to navigate their diet, provide inspiration for interesting new recipes, allergy-friendly eating out options, and to test new dietary products on the market. Hopefully, all of you will enjoy our blog content and join us in our allergy free journey!