A Teenager’s Perspective on Food Restrictions by Erica Brahan

Autoimmunity & Healing Diets

Sep 24

I got an email the other day from a teenager who has been on a restricted diet for several years. She wrote an e-book about her experience geared towards other teenagers who also have food restrictions. I love it when a young person can turn, what is for many adults an impossible situation, into an opportunity to reach out to others.

In her book, Erica relates that she had health problems as a baby which got worse as she grew up. She was sensitive to foods as well as the environment. She was also very athletic, but unfortunately her allergies to food expressed itself as joint pains — in many of her joints. At one point all of her extremities were hurting! There were other problems as well.

How difficult it must have been to love sports and being active, yet to be sidelined because of inflamed and painful joints. It’s hard for an adult to experience this without a great deal of frustration and anxiety, much less a child or a teenager.


Over the years, and after many trials with different doctors and different treatments, Erica realized that restricting her foods was the best way to avoid the terrible inflammation and pain in her joints.

As a teenager who loved to socialize and participate in sports, she came up with a set of character traits that are helpful when being on a restricted diet.

Erica focuses in on several of these traits and explains how that particular trait can help a teenager overcome some of the difficulties with being on a restricted diet.


These explanations can really help another teenager with some of the emotional roadblocks that may interfere with success. Erica asks the right questions in order to take responsibility for your health:

  1. Why am I doing this?
  2. What do I want to get out of doing this? What are my goals?


Erica is a pro when it comes to explaining to your friends, acquaintances or family what you can and cannot eat and why. She cuts right to the chase and differentiates between these social groups.

Socializing while on a restrictive diet can be challenging, as so many social activities are around food. Erica gives many tips and suggestions about how to get around this food issue when at school and at social situations — how to plan for it and how to manage it.

This Book is for Teenagers

This book gives a teenager the words, the motivation and the attitude to be successful. If I had a teenager or even a younger child in this situation I would have them read this book.

The fact that this book is written by a young person who goes through this every day, enables it to engage another teen and offer emotional support and practical real life solutions.

Bravo Erica! Erica blogs at Edibleattitudes.com

Get the book here

Shared at: Mommy Club, Real Food Wednesday, Healthy 2Day, Party Wave Wednesday

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