Podcast Episode 044: Keeping Well as an ‘Allergy Parent’ with Callie Mackenzie




With an increasing number of children in the western world diagnosed with life threatening food allergies, the parents of these kids can find themselves overwhelmed, and anxious, with their well being and mental health under threat.

My guest for this conversation knows this from lived experience. When her third child, Caleb, was just four months old he was diagnosed with multiple food allergies. At that moment Callie Mackenzie and her family were plunged into a world in which nothing felt safe.

Callie was overwhelmed by the responsibility of feeding her family in the face of multiple allergies. The thought of leaving Caleb in someone else’s care, starting preschool or school seemed unimaginable and much of the joy was drained from food and the life surrounding it.

In this episode Callie, a trained medical doctor, shares some of what she has learned in the three years since. We discuss:

  • Current understanding within the medical community of the causes of food allergies

  • The social isolation that comes with a child’s food allergies

  • The impact of a parent’s personality on dealing with allergies and the restrictions they bring

  • The impact of food allergies on a child and parent’s mental health

  • The strategies that Callie has developed to reduce the overwhelm, enhance her wellbeing and bring pleasure back to food and eating.

  • Callie’s online resource, Kid Proof Food, and how she helps parents to stay well in the face of a child’s food allergies.

I was drawn to Callie as a guest for the podcast through her blog post, The Art of Wellbeing as an Allergy Parent. She speaks our language of positive mental health and wellbeing and in this episode she shares insights that I know will help all of us, allergy parent or not.


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