One Columbia woman's rare disease leads her to create business - DatelineCarolina

One Columbia woman's rare disease leads her to create business

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Sulfates are used in everyday products like shampoos and soaps but L'Ecuyer's products are all chemical free Sulfates are used in everyday products like shampoos and soaps but L'Ecuyer's products are all chemical free
L'Ecuyer pointing out the sulfate-free shampoos and handsoaps that took her two years to create L'Ecuyer pointing out the sulfate-free shampoos and handsoaps that took her two years to create

 By: Emmonie Crumblin

    The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America reports that over 50 percent of Americans suffer from some type of allergy. But owner of L'Ecuyer's Gourmet, Renee L'Ecuyer is allergic to more things than most.

    The nurse has hereditary angioedema, a rare disease that affects the immune system that's passed down through generations. An allergic reaction to everyday things like spices, chemicals, and additives can cause rapid swelling of her hands, feet, limbs, face, intestinal tract, and airways. 

It's caused by a malfuction in her body's immune system.

   "It's C1 strains inhibitor is broken. Some people have where it's broken and some people have where it doesn't produce enough. Mine is completely broken," she said.

    The C1 strains help regulate the blood involved with fighting diseases and allergic reactions.

    "It is rare and the true incident of the disease annually is no well-defined. In some places it's estimated to be 1 in 50,000 people, but other estimates would say it's as rare as 1 in 150,000," said allergy doctor Greg Black.

    This disease took researchers 30 years to diagnose and it ultimately helped L'Ecuyer create L'Ecuyer's Gourmet. She sells chemical-free products like spices, lotions, shampoos, and sauces.

    "For the holidays I have this new soap with only pure coconut oil in it. No sulfates at all, " she said.

    She says her possible triggers are gluten, soy, simple ingredients in spices like garlic and onions, and even stress. L'Ecuyer's face, hands, and stomach swells and she has to go to the emergency room most times.

 

    Some people may not consider ingredients like sulfates in products like shampoo, but to L'Ecuyer and other people with this disease, it's a life threatening decision.

    L'Ecuyer Gourmet are at the Forest Drive farmer's market every Thursday from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. Or you can order products from the website.

 

 

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