West Lothian child ‘struggled to breathe’ after severe allergic reaction to pet



A West Lothian father is struggling to raise awareness of hidden allergies, due to his sons’ distress from anaphylactic shock as a newborn baby.

Alan McIntosh, 33, and his partner Freya, 31, raise funds for Natasha’s Allergy Research Foundation (NARF), whose vision is to prevent and eradicate allergic diseases, creating an allergy-free world.

They began this journey after Fergus suffered anaphylactic shock as a small boy, after friendly greetings from a pet.

Alan said: “Right now people don’t really know or understand the seriousness of allergies.

“My son Fergus has multiple allergies and has been life threatening anaphylactic more than once.

“We didn’t know he had this disease and found out he was allergic to eggs after being licked by my brother’s dog in 2019.

“Her dog had eaten a trace of egg in her dog food, to which we now know Fergus is allergic.

Little Fergus immediately caught fire at the trail of an egg, much to his parents’ horror.

“As you can imagine, we were horrified.

“We rushed to St John’s Hospital in Livingston, luckily just in time as he was having trouble breathing.

“His vents were closing, and we were told if we had been a few minutes later, he wouldn’t be here today.

“Fergus is now only two years old and has probably lived longer than most children his age.

“This has happened on several other occasions with different foods.”

The family, which also includes Fergus’ older brother Lochie, 4, are now on a mission to create more allergy conversation and display clearer food information.

Alan, from East Calder, added: “My partner is hiking the 16 mile Shale Trail on Saturday to raise funds and raise awareness for the foundation.”

You can find the link to the family’s JustGiving page, here.

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The UK Food Information Amendment, also known as the Natasha Act, comes into force on October 1, 2021 and will require food companies to provide full ingredient lists and allergen labeling on prepackaged foods for direct sale on the spot. .

Legislation is being introduced to protect people with allergies and give them confidence in the food they buy.

According to the new rules, PPDS (prepackaged for direct sale) foods will have to clearly display the following information on the packaging: the name of the food, and a complete list of ingredients, with allergenic ingredients highlighted, by example in bold, italics or a different color.

Alan also added: “Natasha’s parents have filed a petition to appoint an Allergy Czar as the Allergy Sufferers Champion across the UK.

“The government should appoint an allergy czar to act as a champion for allergy sufferers, to ensure they receive appropriate support and coordinated health care to prevent preventable deaths and health problems.”

Fergus now has two Epipens with him at all times to combat allergic reactions.

You can read more about the petition, here, and donate to Alan and Freya’s JustGiving page, here.


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