By Alejandra Okie
When my daughter was 14 months old she ate eggs for the first time. Within minutes she started having trouble breathing and showed other symptoms of anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction that can cause death.
With 12 million people in the U.S. with food allergies and growing, it’s likely you also know someone who suffers from them.
Food allergies are more common among children (6 percent of young children have them). Even if your child doesn’t have food allergies, it’s possible that a student who sits nearby in the school cafeteria does.
Here are answers to six common questions about food allergies:
1. When does a food allergy happen?
Food allergies happen when the immune system that protects the body believes something the person ate is harmful. The body releases histamine to attack the food protein and the person develops symptoms of an allergic reaction.
2. What are the symptoms of food allergies?
Early signs of a food allergy:
3. What are the most common food allergens?
Eight foods cause 90 percent of all reactions: milk (dairy), eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, wheat and soy. Allergies to peanuts are becoming more common and can be life threatening. Some schools are banning peanut and tree nut products.
4. How are food allergies diagnosed?
An allergy doctor, or allergist, can do a skin prick test or a blood test. Keep in mind that these tests do not always show that the person will have an allergic reaction.
5. What safety measures can be taken?
6. How can I help kids with food allergies?
Article courtesy of La Buena Vida