Shirali Nigam, Co-Founder of AllergySmartz and FoodAllergyLowdown
As an avid traveler, Shirali experienced firsthand how language barriers prevent people with food allergies from safely experiencing new foods and new cultures abroad, since they could not effectively communicate the necessary precautions for safe food preparation. She was determined to make a difference, and vowed to be proactive. Shirali and her brother Arul designed AllergySmartz, an app that is used worldwide, to convey food allergy information and the precautions needed for safe food preparation to restaurant staff in many languages that is also user-friendly for non-native English speakers and requires NO internet access. Shirali directs content creation and runs FoodAllergyLowdown. As co-developer of AllergySmartz, Shirali is working on a major redesign to the app, to be released later in 2021. She also leads food allergy advocacy efforts.
Arul Nigam, Co-Founder of AllergySmartz and FoodAllergyLowdown
Arul is a student with a passion to shape the public perception on food allergies. Having watched his older sister, Shirali, face challenges with food allergies, he is passionate about helping the allergy community. As researchers work towards a cure, Arul feels that it is imperative to work to foster a safe and inclusive environment for people with food allergies. In his role at FoodAllergyLowdown, Arul contributes content to this website and works on improving outreach by strategizing based on global viewership analytics. Arul is also supporting AllergySmartz' major redesign.