Teens in the Real World
  Food Allergies in the Real World  

Be a FAAN Hereo

By Adam, age 17. Allergic to chicken, tree nuts, shellfish, sesame, mustard, and other foods

Celebrity chef Ming Tsai is my hero.  He is my hero for many reasons.  One reason is that I was taught from a young age that one person can make a difference. If you see something that needs to be done, do it.  Ming Tsai did just that. He worked to help pass a bill that will help people with food allergies eat safely in Massachusetts. His expertise as a chef, I think, made the bill realistic and workable for restaurants while making restaurants safer.  I also was taught if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again. He did not give up the fight. It did take four years, but he hung in there and the bill passed.  I am grateful.

One of my scariest memories was being on a vacation in California.  A waiter did not understand the severity of my nut allergy and served me a dessert with nuts.  I was very sick and feel lucky that I was eventually okay after treatment. 

Chef Tsai is also my hero because of what he did for his son, who also has food allergies.  My parents have done so much to help me feel normal and fit in.  I really appreciate another parent helping his son and at the same time so many others.

I can’t wait to go to his restaurant, Blue Ginger. I am going to order what I want without being nervous, and even order dessert! That will truly be the icing on the cake.

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