Teens in the Real World
Food Allergies in the Real World

The Real World


FaanTeen Photo Gallery

Picture of everyone at the Teen Summit

As you get older, your photo album will become filled with memories of camping with your buddies, traveling with your sports team, and impromptu road trips with your friends. When you’re heading out into the real world, your food allergy doesn’t have to infringe on any of your fun – just as long as you plan in advance and use a little common sense. Home

The Teen Advisory Group's Favorite Recipes!

Check out some favorite recipes from members of the Teen Advisory Group (TAG).

Dating with Food Allergies: Q & A, Part 2

Follow-up with the second part of our Dating with Food Allergies questions.

Dating with Food Allergies: Q & A, Part 1

In this first installment of our series on dating with food allergies, TAG members ask each other questions about dating with food allergies and share advice on how to make a first date less awkward. We’ll post our second installment in October.

The Back-Up Plan

TAG member Jenny carries her epinephrine auto-injector everywhere she goes, and she feels safer because of this. But her mom usually carries extra medicine on vacations, just in case.

Early Independence

Some kids start self-carrying their epinephrine a little earlier than others – read more about why TAG member Alyssa began to carry her own auto-injector at the age of 8.

Ready for the Responsibility

TAG member Ryan has been used to his mom carrying his epinephrine auto-injector, but now Ryan takes on this responsibility.

A Sign of Holidays Yet to Come

TAG member Giulia has some tips for where to look for safe food during the holidays - you may be surprised!

Brief Tips

A couple of former TAG members offer some concise advice for what to do during the holidays and how it works for them.

Careful and Safe

Many stress over restaurants, but TAG member Margot explains how three simple rules help her stay safe while eating out.

Staying Realistic

Having fun while eating out requires many things, the first of which is to stay realistic. TAG member Carlo talks about being realistic and provides other safe dining strategies.

Calling in the Cavalry

Solving a bully problem yourself can be a bad idea. TAG member Sara had the right idea – call in the cavalry!

Bright Lights

Kathleen was interviewed on her local news show and got to sit and watch as the whole news team went to work! Check out her story.

The Inside Source

TAG member Giulia was interviewed for a book a while back. She describes just how easy and fun the whole process was.

Spreading the Word

Another media-savvy FAANTeen, Sarah, describes some of the ways she has recently gotten involved in spreading food allergy education and awareness.

A Shout Out

This month is all about giving back to our friends! A great group of friends deserves some great recognition, and 2008 TAG member Carlo gives that in spades.

The New Kid

Moving when you’re little can be tough, especially when you had started establishing some solid friendships. TAG member Corrine discusses the move she made as a child and how she developed new friendships in her new home.

Summer Rules

Most summers, 2007 TAG member Pam goes to the beach with her family. She's developed a great list of methods they use to stay safe. Click the link above to take a look at the list.

That's a Dangerous Pizza!

TAG member Sarah discusses a recent reaction she had because of a new food allergy and the important lesson she took away from the experience.

A Slice of Trouble

It seems pizza can be a dicey option - 2007 TAG member Ryan details a bad experience he had at a pizzeria and the steps he took to make sure it would never happen again.

Steps to Safety

TAG Member Ariella has come up with a list of 12 important steps to achieve safety as quick as possible, providing a handy guide for the newly diagnosed.

Dating Alternatives

If dating isn't your thing, a great alternative is doing stuff with groups of friends. Courtney explains how her friends help her manage her food allergy out in the real world.


Kent had plans to join the Air Force after high school. He thought the academy would be a perfect match for him. Unfortunately, it was not meant to be.

Some Help from the French

Orchestrating a successful trip overseas is a formidable task, but Danielle lays out the steps she took to have a safe and fun experience abroad.

Take Me Out to the Ballgame?

When Giulia’s family decides to go to a baseball game, she must overcome her personal embarrassment to prevent her food allergies from getting in the way of having fun.

Listening In

Being newly diagnosed with food allergy can be scary and confusing. TAG member Ryan offers his advice on how to help.

Traveling with Allergies

During the holidays‚ a lot of us go on trips to visit family members or friends. Read Olivia’s experience about traveling alone.

Trick-or-Treat for Food Allergy

Thank you for a wonderful Halloween charity drive; you may still send in donations although the window for prizes has closed.

Pop Quiz

Want to test your skills at managing food allergies in the real world? Take our quiz to see how much you really know about living safely with a food allergy.

Traveling Overseas

Last summer, Jenny's trip to Japan turned into a nightmare when a misunderstanding with the airline meant that she was going to be stuck overseas for three weeks. Learn how she handled a tough situation in a foreign country — and check out her tips for traveling outside of the United States.

Dining Out

If you have a food allergy, you know that dining out can be risky business! Download our interactive chef card to help make your restaurant experience a safe one.

Quotes on Safe Dating

These teens with food allergies relate their experiences with dating and kissing, to help others.


Unfortunately, money doesn’t grow on trees – or in your parents’ wallets. Read our tips on what to consider as you kick-start your career as a babysitter


Spending a weekend in the great outdoors with friends is practically a high school rite of passage. But before you lace up your hiking boots, be sure to read this food allergy checklist.

Going to Camp

Many clubs or sports teams host overnight camps during the summertime. While they offer a great opportunity to bond with your teammates, overnight camps also require a little extra precaution on your part.

Hanging Out Outdoors

As the weather warms up, activities and meals tend to move outdoors. Read our tips on staying safe at barbecues, parties, and amusement parks.

Hosting a Party

Why let your food allergy stress you out about parties? Check out our tips on how to be the host or hostess with the mostest, and download our recipe cards for some tasty (and allergy-free!) party favorites.

Attend a FAAN Conference

Our Baltimore conference was a huge success — 30 teens came to our special teen-only lunch session to share tips on managing food allergies in the real world. Learn what they're all about.

Walk for Food Allergy

Get your walking shoes on! Thousands of FAAN members and their friends and family across the country walked last fall to raise awareness about food allergy. Read about how several teens got involved in the Northern Virginia Walk, and learn how you can start walking, too!

Kids' Congress on Capitol Hill

Kids and teens from around the country visited Washington, D.C. last fall to participate in the inaugural FAAN Kids' Congress on Capitol Hill. The Junior Ambassadors educated legislators about what life is like for the millions of children who have a food allergy.

Allergies and Weight Control

Can food allergies influence our body weight (link) ? When we eat foods to which we are allergic, the levels of insulin in our blood increase. High levels of insulin activate lipoprotein lipase which creates triglycerides (stored fat) and block the activity of  triglyceride lipase which breaks down stored fat to be used as energy. Therefore, the result of eating foods to which we are allergic is increased deposition of fat, and weight gain. There are a number of options, including Weight Watchers,  for overweight people who want to lose weight effectively, even if they have food allergies. This is a good source.

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