Allergic to Treif

I found Rabbi Eli Gersten’s article addressing the kosher concerns of cut fruit (“Cut Fruit at the Office,” winter 2012) particularly fascinating, since I came close to dying as a result of this issue.

A few years ago while on vacation in Cyprus, my husband and I had brought kosher food for lunch and dinner but felt that eating fruit at the breakfast buffet shouldn’t be of much concern. En route to the airport later that day, my breathing constricted and I broke out in terrible hives. We stupidly boarded the thankfully short flight home to Israel, and I went straight from the airport to an emergency medical clinic where the doctors saved me from deadly anaphylactic shock.

It turned out that the chef’s rubber gloves contained a trace of shellfish and other non-kosher substances I had never before consumed to which I was extremely allergic. This is just another reason to take the subject covered in the article very seriously.

Shelly Levine
Jerusalem, Israel

This article was featured in the Spring 2013 issue of Jewish Action.
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