Dining Out With Food Allergies
If your child has one or more food allergies, dining out can be achallenge. However, it is possible to have a healthy and satisfyingdining-out experience it just takes some preparation and persistence onyour part.
The American Dietetics Association offers these tips for dealing with foodallergies when your family is eating away from home:
Know what ingredients are in the foods at the restaurant where you plan to eat. When possible, obtain a menu from the restaurant ahead of time and review the menu items.
Let your server know from the beginning about your child’s food allergy. He or she should know how each dish is prepared and what ingredients are used. Ask about preparation and ingredients before you order. If your server does not know this information or seems unsure of it, ask to speak to the manager or the chef.
Avoid buffet-style or family-style service, as there may be cross-contamination of foods from using the same utensils for different dishes.
Avoid fried foods, as the same oil may be used to fry several different foods.
Alternately, there are several types of allergy cards available on theinternet that can be customized with your child’s personal information. Oneexample is the Food Allergy Buddy Dining Card, promoted by the NationalRestaurant Association.
How Can Parents Keep Kids Safe
If your child has a food allergy, carefully read food labels so you can avoid the allergen. Ingredients and manufacturing processes can change, so it’s important to read labels every time, even for foods your child has had safely in the past. The most common allergens should be clearly labeled. But less common allergens can be hidden in ingredients like natural flavors or spices.
One thing that might not show up on a label is cross-contamination risk. Cross-contamination happens when a food you are not allergic to comes in contact with a food you are allergic to. This can happen if a manufacturer uses the same equipment to grind lots of different foods, for example. Some companies state this on their labels to alert customers to the risk of cross-contamination with messages like: “May contain peanuts,” “Processed in a facility that also processes milk,” or “Manufactured on equipment also used for eggs.” You’ll want to avoid products that have these kinds of alerts.
But companies are not required to put cross-contamination alerts on a food label. So it’s best to contact them to see if a product might been in contact with your childâs allergens. You may be able to get this information from a company website. If not, contact the company and ask.
When your child eats away from home, make sure anyone preparing food knows about the allergy and which foods to avoid. You may want to provide food that you know is safe for your child.
What Is A Pollen Allergy
Pollen is one of the most common triggers of seasonal allergies. Many people know pollen allergy as hay fever. Experts usually refer to pollen allergy as seasonal allergic rhinitis.
Each spring, summer, and fall and even in the winter in some states plants release tiny pollen grains to fertilize other plants of the same species. Most of the pollen that causes allergic reactions comes from trees, grasses, and weeds. These plants make small, light, and dry pollen grains that travel by the wind. They then can find their way into your eyes, nose, and lungs, causing allergy symptoms if you have a pollen allergy.
Flowering plants that spread their pollen by insects like roses and some trees, like cherry and pear trees usually do not cause allergic rhinitis.
Do You Live in an Allergy Capital?
Your location can have an impact on your seasonal allergies. AAFAs Allergy Capitals report looks at the top 100 most challenging cities in the continental United States to live with seasonal pollen allergies.
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America produces this report to:
- Help people recognize, prevent, and manage allergy symptoms
- Help communities identify where the needs of people with allergic diseases can be better met
- Raise awareness about the impact of seasonal allergies and provide helpful information to improve the quality of life for people who experience them
Tree Pollen Allergy
Some of the trees that cause the most allergy symptoms are:
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Need Help With Ragweed Allergies Come To Premier Allergy & Asthma Today
If your allergies usually start in August and get worse through the early autumn, thereâs a very good chance that youâre allergic to ragweed. And at Premier Allergy & Asthma, weâre here to help. With our team of experienced allergists on your side, you can get the care you need to reduce your symptoms, feel better, and get through allergy season with less discomfort. Contact us online to schedule an appointment at one of our offices throughout Central Ohio today, and take the first steps toward relief from ragweed allergies.
Q : Are Allergic Reactions To Inhaled Foods Common
No. Allergic reactions to food in the form of fine dust are uncommon. Most food proteins do not easily disperse as aerosols. Food handlers may have reactions to inhaled foods, including soy beans in processing plants, seafood allergens in some factories, and wheat dust in bakeries.
Foods which are more likely to cause an allergic reaction in the home environment in highly sensitised people include steam from cooking, which can carry particles of the food, and dried egg powder.
Most reactions that seem to occur without the food being eaten, especially in young children, are due to behaviours common in this age group, such as messy eating and mouthing objects. Volatile esters, which are carbohydrates, not proteins, can convey the smell of a food but cannot trigger symptoms.
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The 8 Most Common Food Intolerances
Unlike some allergies, food intolerances arent life-threatening. However, they can be very problematic for those affected.
Food intolerances and sensitivities are extremely common and seem to be on the rise .
In fact, its estimated that up to 20% of the worlds population may have a food intolerance .
Food intolerances and sensitivities can be hard to diagnose due to their wide range of symptoms.
This article reviews the most common types of food sensitivities and intolerances, their related symptoms and foods to avoid.
Q : What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Allergic Reactions To Foods
Signs and symptoms of mild to moderate allergic reactions to foods include:
- Swelling of the face, lips, eyes.
- Hives or welts on the skin.
- Abdominal pain, vomiting.
Signs and symptoms of severe allergic reactions to foods include one or more of the following:
- Difficult or noisy breathing.
Q 4: Are all adverse reactions to foods due to allergy?
No. The term food allergy is often misused to describe any adverse reaction to foods.
Adverse reactions to foods that are not food allergy:
- Include food intolerances, toxic reactions, food poisoning, enzyme deficiencies, food aversion, or irritation from skin contact with certain foods.
- Can result in symptoms such as headaches after having chocolate or red wine, or bloating after drinking a milkshake or eating pasta.
- Do not result in life-threatening anaphylaxis.
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Most Common Food Allergies In Adults
According to Food Allergy Research and Education , its estimated that up to 15 million Americans have a food allergy. While some allergies can lead to itchy skin or rash, others can cause severe reactions such as swollen throat or anaphylaxisa severe response that affects blood pressure and breathing and can even lead to death. Although many people use the terms interchangeably, a food allergy is not the same as a food intolerance, such as the inability to digest lactose, which can be annoying and painful but not dangerous.
If you think you have an allergy to one of these foods, talk to your health care provider and steer clear of any dish containing them. If you have severe reactions, have a contingency plan ready in case you accidentally expose yourself.
Not to be confused with lactose intolerance, one of the most common types of allergies is to dairy products. When someone is lactose intolerant, lactosea type of sugar found in dairymoves through the large intestine without being properly digested and can lead to uncomfortable symptoms, such as gas, bloating or indigestion.
However, when someone is allergic to dairy, the symptoms will affect much more than just the digestive tract. A milk allergy is when the immune system doesnt recognize dairy and attacks it by releasing histamines. Someone with a milk allergy can develop severe symptoms, such as breathing complications or an uneven heartbeat.
What Percentage Of The Population Has Allergies
With more than 50 million of the U.S. population reporting allergies, this comes out to be about 10% of the total population. Both children and adults can develop and suffer from allergies. Adolescent boys may have a slightly higher prevalence than adolescent girls, but women have a slightly higher prevalence overall than men.
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Q 1: Where Can Further Information And Support Be Obtained
For other food allergy information go to www.allergy.org.au/patients/food-allergy
For allergy prevention and infant feeding information go to www.allergy.org.au/patients/allergy-prevention
For patient/consumer support organisations go to www.allergy.org.au/patients/patient-support-organisations
ASCIA is the peak professional body of clinical immunology/allergy specialists in Australia and New Zealand.
ASCIA resources are based on published literature and expert review, however, they are not intended to replace medical advice. The content of ASCIA resources is not influenced by any commercial organisations.
For more information go to www.allergy.org.au
To donate to immunology/allergy research go to www.allergyimmunology.org.au
Content updated May 2021
Most Common Food Allergies In Kids
May is National Asthma & Allergy Awareness Month, so we are taking a look at the most common food allergies in kids. Many children have food sensitivities or intolerances, but allergies are different. Allergies are an immune response to certain proteins in foods. The symptoms of allergies can be more severe than the symptoms of food intolerance.
One of the possible effects of a food allergy is called anaphylaxis. This is a severe allergic reaction that affects the entire body. It can include a wide range of symptoms that appear quickly. The following symptoms may be signs of anaphylaxis especially if they appear suddenly after exposure to a possible allergen:
- Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
- Wheezing or coughing
- Swelling of the lips or tongue
- Rash, redness, or hives and/or pale and bluish skin
- Stuffy or runny nose
As you can see, its important to be aware of any food allergies your child has so you can adjust their diet to avoid trigger foods. The Food Allergen Labelling and Consumer Protection Act requires FDA regulated foods to clearly list any of the top eight allergens in their ingredient information. Any food has the potential to cause an allergy, but these are the eight most common food allergies in kids.
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The 8 Most Common Food Allergies
Although its possible for any food to cause an allergy, most food allergies are caused by just eight foods (
This article is a detailed review of the 8 most common food allergies. It discusses:
Its caused by your immune system wrongly recognizing some of the proteins in a food as harmful. Your body then launches a range of protective measures, including releasing chemicals like histamine, which causes inflammation.
For people who have a food allergy, even exposure to very small amounts of the problem food can cause an allergic reaction.
Symptoms can occur anywhere from a few minutes after exposure to a few hours or even a few days later, depending on the type of allergy. They may include some of the following:
- swelling of the tongue, mouth, or face
- difficulty breathing
In more severe cases, a food allergy can cause anaphylaxis. Symptoms, which can come on very quickly, include an itchy rash, swelling of the throat or tongue, shortness of breath, and low blood pressure. Some cases can be fatal .
Many food intolerances are often mistaken for food allergies.
However, food intolerances never involve the immune system. This means that while they can severely affect your quality of life, they are not life threatening.
Common Allergic Reaction Symptoms
Allergic reactions can look very different depending on the allergen and the person affected.
If you think you might be having an allergic reaction, it important to seek medical attention straight away.
Some common allergic reaction symptoms include:
- sneezing and nasal congestion, or a runny nose
- itchy, watering eyes
- hives an itchy, red rash
- swollen lips, tongues, eyes or face
- stomach pain, vomiting or diarrhoea
More severe allergic reactions can lead to anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock. This is a life threatening condition and needs to be treated immediately.
Symptoms of anaphylaxis include any of the above symptoms, as well as:
- swelling of the face, lips, tongue throat or mouth
- difficulty breathing
- dizziness or light-headedness
- any itchy or red changes to your skin including blistering and skin peeling, blue tinging of skin or lips
- losing consciousness
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The 5 Most Common Allergens
Allergens are substances that the immune system recognizes as abnormal and threatening, to the point where an allergic reaction occurs. Unfortunately, allergens, commonly referred to as allergy triggers, are prevalent throughout the world and can come in a variety of forms including food and pets.
It is important for allergy sufferers to have a basic knowledge of these allergens in order to learn how to minimize their effect or even avoid them altogether. Below we have compiled a list of the 5 most common allergens.
1. Pollen.Because it exist in abundance, pollen is perhaps one of the most unavoidable allergens. Pollen is yielded by a variety of plants including trees, flowers, grasses, and weeds. Its light fluffy texture makes it easy to travel through the air and latch on to various surfaces. Because of this, the best way to avoid pollen is to try to refrain from being outdoors for long periods of time, especially near areas with higher qualities of pollen producing vegetation. As an allergy sufferer, being exposed to pollen often leads to symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, nasal congestion, sneezing and runny nose.
It is important to note that the allergens listed above are only a few of the many that exist. For more information on potential allergens or to inquire about our allergy treatment methods click here.
What Is A Food Intolerance
People often confuse food allergies with food intolerance. The symptoms of food intolerance can include burping, indigestion, gas, loose stools, headaches, nervousness, or a feeling of being “flushed.” But food intolerance:
- doesn’t involve the immune system
- can happen because a person can’t digest a substance, such as lactose
- can be unpleasant but is rarely dangerous
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Risk Factors Of Food Allergy
Food allergy risk factors include:
- Family history. Youre at increased risk of food allergies if asthma, eczema, hives or allergies such as hay fever are common in your family.
- Other allergies. If youre already allergic to one food, you may be at increased risk of becoming allergic to another. Similarly, if you have other types of allergic reactions, such as hay fever or eczema, your risk of having a food allergy is greater.
- Age. Food allergies are more common in children, especially toddlers and infants. As children grow older, their digestive systems mature and their bodies are less likely to absorb food or food components that trigger allergies.
Fortunately, children typically outgrow allergies to milk, soy, wheat and eggs. Severe allergies and allergies to nuts and shellfish are more likely to be lifelong.
- Asthma. Asthma and food allergy commonly occur together. When they do, both food allergy and asthma symptoms are more likely to be severe.
Factors that may increase your risk of developing an anaphylactic reaction include:
- Having a history of asthma
- Being a teenager or younger
- Delaying use of epinephrine to treat your food allergy symptoms
- Not having hives or other skin symptoms
What Causes Farmers Lung
Farmers lung is caused by the dust thats found on moldy crops. This dust contains bacteria spores that are heat resistant and cause irritation.
When crops are harvested in rainy or wet weather, they can start to compost and create heat while in storage. This can result in rapid mold growth and large amounts of mold dust. Workers who handle these spoiled crops then breathe in the accumulated dust.
Farmers lung is not an infection. The bacteria causes an allergic reaction, much like seasonal or environmental allergies. It happens as the bodys immune system responds to the presence of mold dust. This creates inflammation and the symptoms of farmers lung.
Over time, this repeated immune system reaction can damage the lungs.
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Treatment For Food Allergy
There is no medication to prevent food allergy. The goal of treatment is toavoid the foods that cause the symptoms. After seeing your child’s doctorand finding foods to which your child is allergic, it is very important toavoid these foods and other similar foods in that food group. If you arebreastfeeding your child, it is important to avoid foods in your diet towhich your child is allergic. Small amounts of the food allergen may betransmitted to your child through your breast milk and cause a reaction.
It is also important to give vitamins and minerals to your child if he orshe is unable to eat certain foods. Discuss this with your child’s doctor.
For children who have had a severe food reaction, your child’s health careprovider may prescribe an emergency kit that contains epinephrine, whichhelps stop the symptoms of severe reactions. Consult your child’s doctorfor further information.
Some children, under the direction of his or her health care provider, maybe given certain foods again after three to six months to see if he or shehas outgrown the allergy. Many allergies may be short-term in children andthe food may be tolerated after the age of 3 or 4.