rich emollient used in the management of eczema, psoriasis and other dry skin conditions.


I wanted to do a series of video blogs about this but my iphone has decided I shouldn’t be videoing myself.

I have managed to go pretty much ‘processed food free’ now for months but I keep slipping up. I get it right for days at a time and then temptation falls in my path and can’t refuse the biscuit… the freefrom cake or gluten free bread.

I allow the gluten free bread, the glass of wine and then the Mrs Crimbles macaroons and something is waking me in the night with all over hives, itching and volcanic nodular prurigo. It starts up in the evening and gets worse through the night but subside by the morning.

Damage limitation is effective with very short nails but it’s frustrating.

When you keep a food diary and there are numerous suspect items each day/week it’s very hard to pinpoint what’s the culprit.

So today I have eaten…

  1. Breakfast: Porridge with oat milk and sultanas – you could argue the oats and oat milk are processed and the dried fruit to an extent – have I failed already?
  2. Snacks: Green tea, a handful of dates and crystalised ginger – another fail? More dried fruit and the sugary ginger surely can’t be good? But the bag of ginger is falling apart and nearly empty and I can’t throw it away before it’s finished…
  3. Lunch: Jacket potato with olive oil drizzle and left-over beef casserole – thumbs up. All natural and cooked by me… and washed down with a apple. Does the olive oil count as being processed? Where do you stop? OK Olive oil is allowed as of now.
  4. Snacks: Apple, Skin purify herbal tea, glass of water, YoYo bear strawberry snack thing – Uh Urrrrr – processed again. Not doing very well am I?
  5. Dinner: Chicken stir fry with onions, peppers, cabbage, carrots and rice noodles is planned and should the no processed test apart from the dratted rice noodles… they only have a couple of ingredients though so they should be OK. Shouldn’t they?
  6. Evening snacks/drinks: Since there is a birthday in the house today (not mine, Mr What Allergy) it might be a triple/quadruple fail… can I stay off the nice wine tonight?

I am pretty sure that the sultanas, oats and oat milk are not giving me a problem but should they be allowed in a truly processed food free diet? I don’t think I’m cut out for this…


I did manage to forgo the pure spread which is very processed and used olive oil on the jacket spud instead. I think I’m OK with the dairy free spreads but they are very processed. I’m experimenting using pure coconut oil instead and that’s working well too.

Is water processed? I’m drinking tap water too – not quite ready to start forking out on bottled water as well.

Has anyone else tried cutting out processed foods? Completely?

And the supplements I also take to ensure I’m not missing out on vital nutrients and vitamins are… you guessed it. Processed. Should I take them as usual? They are freefrom allergens but even so. This is hard.

It’s not as easy as it looks.



An allergy and health writer and freelance copywriter, Ruth is passionate about helping those with allergies and food intolerances take control, embrace their condition, and learn to live with and love who they are. It can be very lonely finding you have allergies and discovering what helps you can be a life long journey. What works for one person won't work for another, so after trying nearly every allergy treatment under the sun and finding hours of research necessary to keep abreast of what's going on, Ruth started writing her blog, What Allergy? in April 2009. Ruth has life threatening allergies herself to all nuts, all diary, tomatoes and celery and knows first-hand what it's like to have an anaphylactic attack. Voted in the Top 5 UK allergy blogs by Cision UK in 2011, What Allergy is packed full of interesting articles, hints and tips and product reviews which are a must read for anyone with allergies, food intolerances or sensitivities, asthma and eczema. From subjects such as "What is celery allergy?" to "Surviving a holiday abroad with allergies", it's packed with useful and interesting information. You can register free for a weekly newsletter by visiting her website and also keep in touch by following her on Facebook and Twitter.

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