Keeping A Food Diary

While waiting to see a consultant/ specialist it would be wise to keep a food diary, or you have a date for your consultant/ specialist, and they have asked you to keep a food diary.

This is only a guide, if you not seen your consultant, or not discussed about keeping a food diary, you should contact your doctors to ask for advice.

If you are having reactions, and not been referred to consultant/ specialist contact your doctor for an appointment to discuss, also a referral to see a consultant/ specialist.

If you have a reaction that is severe, get medical treatment before contemplating filling out your food diary.

This diary should cover.

  1. Severity of reactions.
  2. Symptoms- record every symptom even if you think it might not be related.
  3. Foods when reaction occurred.
  4. If the symptoms are seasonal
  5. Time between when food consumed and when reaction of occurred.
  6. Quantity of food, or if you started eating the food and had to stop because symptoms had started.
  7. If you think you know what it is causing your reactions, do not eat again. Get in touch with your doctor to discuss, as the food might be a vital part of your nutritional diet, especially in children as this could cause development and development problems.
  8. Cut out labels, and attach to the diary, this is so when you have a reaction you can check with other ingredients when you had a reaction. You may start to see a pattern of the food/foods that are causing your symptoms. There may be no pattern that you can see, but this diary will help your consultant/ specialist.
  9. In the diary record everything e.g., drinks, supplements, food, water, sweets, so on.
  10. If you are taking medications, add the patient leaflets/ ingredients in your diary.
  11. Include external factors e.g., Medication taken not normally have, if you are ill or poorly at the time of reaction, menstrual, pre-menopausal, stress, if taking antibiotics, recently exercised, you are hot or cold, so on.
  12. If having a takeaway or a meal out, try and find out ingredients in meal. If you have had a reaction, speak to chef or staff to ask for the ingredients of food. Remember to include sauces, drinks, if the recipe is homemade ask if you can have a list of the ingredients.
  13. Add food cravings, sometimes your body craves something you cannot not tolerate.
  14. Put no limitations of time on how long you keep the diary, and record data for your consultant/ specialist.
  15. If you have found the food/foods that causing your reactions and you have spoken to doctor, consultant/ specialist and have agreed to eliminate this food from your diet, do not be tempted to reintroduce the food without professional guidance.
  16. Ask your family if they have a history of food allergies and have this information with your food diary.
  17. If a baby keep/ put diary about if vomiting, diarrhoea, blood in stools, and poor growth if applicable.
  18. Include if you have asthma, if your asthma is controlled or uncontrolled, times of asthma attack.
  19. Think about cross contamination and add to diary e.g., your kitchen, not washing hands after touching allergen, eating out, takeaways, so on.
  20. If breastfeeding and your child is having allergic reactions, keep a diary of what you have been eating, what you have eaten can through your milk.
  21. If breastfeeding and your child, add details of, skin rashes, dry skin patches, colic, any other symptoms.
  22. If breastfeeding and your child, always take medical advice before changing your diet. As a nursing mother, you need to be healthy, have a healthy diet to produce good quality milk.
  23. Write down if this is the first time you had this food.
  24. Include if you smoke, if you drink alcohol, and add times.
  25. Take video or photos, so you can show outward symptoms of reactions, if symptoms are severe get medical help first.

Daily Food And Symptom Diary Template

These lists are guidance only, and not fully extensive, people are advised that it is the responsibility of the individual when using this information.

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