Common Food Allergies

Children are allergic to foods such as eggs, milk, peanuts, soy, and wheat. Sometimes they outgrow these food allergies and sometimes they are still allergic to certain foods as adults. Children are more likely to outgrow milk or soy allergies than they are to outgrow peanut, fish or shrimp allergies.

Adults are typically allergic to foods such as:

  • Shellfish
  • Shrimp
  • Crayfish
  • Lobster
  • Crab
  • Peanuts
  • Tree nuts such as walnuts
  • Fish
  • Eggs.

If an adult is still having allergic reactions to food, they are not likely to “outgrow” the allergic reaction tendency.

A family may have more than one individual with food allergies, making shopping and cooking a nightmare. It is important to read labels each time you make the same food purchase as manufacturers often change ingredients and when you have more than one member of your family with allergies it can make shopping more of a reading trip and very time consuming.

Food Allergies in the Kitchen

If the family members with food allergies are teens or adults it is possible to make food purchases and then to separate at home those items containing the food allergens and keep them in a separate location. The individual with the food allergy will still need to be aware of what is not safe to eat and make a habit of checking labels before preparing or eating food to be sure that what they are allergic to is not contained in that specific item.

Ironically it tends to be the common foods to the region or that the family eats most often that the adults or children are more prone to react to in an allergic manner. Japan is known for rice consumption and there is a high incidence of rice allergy in Japan.

Cross Reaction to Similar Foods

It is possible to have an allergic reaction to a food that is similar to the one that you are allergic to. Someone with an allergy to shrimp may also be allergic to crab, lobster, or crayfish and should be cautious to avoid these foods if they know they are allergic to any of the foods in this group.

Oral Allergy Syndrome

There is a condition known as oral allergy syndrome that occurs whenever a person consumes something that is related to an airborne allergy. An example would be a person that is allergic to birch pollen might experience a reaction such as swelling around the mouth when eating the peel of apples during birch pollen season. So individuals with airborne allergies may have a connected reaction to food during the time of the year when their airborne allergy is reactive.

Exercise-induced Food Allergy

There is also the possibility of experiencing an allergic reaction to food that is ingested just prior to exercising. This situation is called: exercise-induced food allergy and occurs when an individual eats a specific food just before starting to exercise. The rise in body temperature triggers itching, feeling light-headed or hives and even anaphylaxis reaction. The way to avoid exercise-induced food allergy is simply to not eat for a couple of hours prior to exercising.

What the Allergic Reaction Appears As

There is a chain reaction when a food is ingested that the individual is allergic to.

The first thing to happen is the individual puts the food item into the mouth. This may trigger itching in the mouth.

When the food reaches the stomach, the individual may experience gastric intestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal pain.

As the food allergen travels through the bloodstream, the individuals blood pressure may drop causing fainting, and passing out.

As the allergen is carried to the skin through the bloodstream it may appear as skin hives, rash, or eczema.

When the allergens get to the lungs they react as asthma.