When my son was diagnosed with food allergies more than seven years ago, there weren’t many support networks for parents. The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network was the only resource I had…thank goodness!
Today, it is thrilling to see the amount of resources and support networks available to parents of children with food allergies. But with that gift, comes great responsibility. With so many resources how do we, as parents, know which blogs and websites are the most accurate and helpful?
Earlier this spring, I wrote an article on safely navigating the web. These are basic tips that will help you separate fact from fiction and helpful from worrisome.
With those suggestions in mind, I’d like to focus on finding a blogger that is worth his or her salt. Here are some things to consider when following your favorite food allergy blogger:
- Personal Experience: What is the blogger’s personal experience with food allergies? How long have they been dealing with the diagnosis? The best food allergy bloggers have personal, first-hand experience in living with food allergies.
- Advice: Where does the blogger stand when it comes to medical advice? Do they encourage you to speak with your pediatrician/allergist or do they make medical recommendations of their own? Board-certified physicians and allergists are the only entities with credentials for dispensing sound medical advice.
- Marketing: Does the blogger have ads running on the sidebar of their page? Do they only promote items that are marketed on their page? Ads on a blogger’s page should not necessarily raise a red flag. However, if the blogger continuously promotes only the brands mentioned in those ads, you could be missing out on a wide range of other allergy-friendly brands that could be great for your family.
- Credibility: Does the blogger receive compensation for product reviews? A blogger should never be compensated for doing a review as it undermines their objectivity and will often positively slant the review regardless of the blogger’s true feelings about the product.
- Collaboration: Does the blogger regularly send you to other bloggers’ and other food allergy organization’s sites? Do they have guest posts? Do they share great tidbits of industry information on their blog and facebook page? Any blogger worth their salt will regularly share other resources with you to help you, the reader, expand your information base. Although personal experience definitely lends itself to blogging about food allergies, the addition of industry networking will benefit readers in a much more positive way.
Next time you’re surfing the web and visit your favorite food allergy blogger, consider the above and see how they rate. If you know you’ve hit the food allergy blogger jackpot, share your find with the rest of the food allergy community!!!
Not sure where to start? Visit The Food Allergy& Anaphylaxis Network’s blog here.