From peanuts to shellfish… Why are so many adults suddenly getting allergies?

May 13

I found out myself, well into my 20s, that I could not eat hazelnuts. It was as an adult that I found out I could not eat one of my favorite snacks. Here is a story about another adult who finds herself allergic to foods she had grown used to eating without any issues.   When Edwina Galloway started to feel a strange knot in her throat after eating some peanuts, she tried to ease it by drinking tea. But within minutes her throat was constricting and she was struggling to breathe. Her husband bundled her into their car and rushed her to hospital. Fortunately, it was only a mile from their home in Sevenoaks, Kent; had it been much further, Edwina could have died. ‘By the time I got there, I was shivering and shaking as my body was going into shock,’ says Edwina, 48, who runs her own administration business. ‘It was terribly frightening.’ Edwina was suffering from anaphylactic shock – an allergic reaction which causes puffy lips and eyes, other symptoms such as vomiting and breathing difficulties as the air passages swell. Untreated, it can prove fatal within minutes. Edwina was immediately given antihistamine, which eased her symptoms. She later underwent tests to see what had brought on such a violent reaction; the results couldn’t have been more surprising. ‘I was told I’d developed an allergy to peanuts and hazelnuts,’ Edwina recalls. ‘It was a real shock, as there is no history of allergies in my family, and I certainly had never had an allergy before. ‘In fact, my husband is a vegetarian and so nut roast had been a staple of our diet. This allergy just came on out of the blue. ‘Now I have to carry an adrenaline jab with me at all times in case I have a really bad reaction. ‘Luckily, that hasn’t happened yet, but the allergy has changed my life. I have to be incredibly careful about what I eat because it takes only a trace of nut to set me off. ‘I went to a friend’s house for lunch a year ago, and although she was very careful to prepare food without nuts there must have been a tiny hint somewhere...

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Delta urged to stop offering peanuts

May 13

MEMPHIS, May 9 (UPI) — Dr. George Flinn, a physician and Tennessee county commissioner, is asking Delta airlines to stop serving peanuts on its flights formerly flown by Northwest. Delta began serving peanuts in late March, when it substituted its snack, food and beverage offerings for those previously provided by Northwest. The Memphis Commerical Appeal reported Saturday that Flinn said he’s not allergic to peanuts, but his grandson is. “It’s been absolutely proven that if someone who is allergic to peanuts is exposed to peanuts, they’re going to have anaphylaxis,” he said. “This can cause trouble breathing, possibly even death.” Delta spokesman Anthony Black said the airline’s policy is to create a buffer zone three rows in front and three rows behind a passenger with peanut allergy. But Flinn said that’s not good enough because some allergy patients can be affected by airborne peanut particles. He said Northwest not only provided that, but the airline also would make courtesy announcements asking passengers not to break out their own peanut-based snacks while traveling on a flight with an allergic person. He said his family has been forced to make alternative travel arrangements with his grandson since the snack offerings changed. “Peanut allergy is the most common cause of severe allergic reactions in the U.S. and it tends to be a lifelong allergy. Further, the entire family of an allergic individual usually changes their plans to keep that person safe, thereby making the market impact of food allergies three to four times greater than the 12 million patients,” said Anne Munoz-Furlong, founder of the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. via Delta urged to stop offering peanuts – UPI.com. Share...

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Remember to pamper Mom today!

May 10

Happy Mother’s Day all you wonderful moms out there. You gals are great and us kids appreciate you SOOO much (especially when we have to do what you do when you’re not around, Phew!!!)! So to all you kids out there, remember, it’s her day so breakfast in bed, no housework (you do it instead!) and lots of hugs. That is the order of the day. Our breakfast in bed wasn’t extravagant, but she really appreciated it. Coffee, blueberry smoothie, cinnamon toast, hardboiled egg, and X’s and O’s A happy day to mom’s everywhere, Marc and son at Eat Nut-Free. Share...

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Obese children more likely to have food allergies

May 08

This is an interesting discovery. It’s interesting also that of all the people I know who have food allergies, none of them is of larger than average size.  Obese children and teens are 26 per cent more likely than kids of a normal weight to have some kind of allergy, especially a food allergy, U.S. researchers report. But it is not yet clear if obesity actually causes allergies; only an “association” between obesity and allergies was found, said Dr. Darryl Zeldin, the senior author on the paper. “While the results from this study are interesting, they do not prove that obesity causes allergies. More research is needed to further investigate this potential link,” Zeldin said. Nevertheless, the authors suggest that controlling obesity in young people may be important for lowering rates of allergies. The researchers, from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, a part of the U.S. National Institutes for Health, analyzed data on 4,111 children aged 2 to 19 that included information about allergies and asthma. They looked at a number of factors including body weight and BMI (body mass index), antibody levels to indoor, outdoor and food allergens, and responses to a questionnaire about diagnoses of hay fever, eczema, and allergies. They found that antibodies for specific allergens were higher among children who were obese or overweight. “The signal for allergies seemed to be coming mostly from food allergies. The rate of having a food allergy was 59 percent higher for obese children,” said Dr. Stephanie London, a researcher at NIEHS. The study appears in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. The study is the first to be published using new data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). NHANES is a large survey designed to assess the health and nutritional status of American adults and children. An allergy/asthma component was added to the 2005-2006 NHANES study, making it the largest nationally representative dataset of allergy and asthma information ever assembled in the U.S. “There is a wealth of knowledge we will be able to gain by analyzing these data that will be useful to allergy and asthma sufferers,” said Zeldin. via CTV.ca | Obese children more likely to have food allergies. Share...

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PEANUT ALLERGY ALERT – Market Pantry Chocolate Chip Chewy Granola Bars

May 07

PEANUT ALLERGY ALERT May 6, 2009 LeClerc Foods is recalling “Market Pantry Chocolate Chip Chewy Granola Bars” due to undeclared peanut. The product was distributed to Target stores nationwide. The 15.2-oz. boxes have a “best by” date of 18JAN2010 with UPC 85239 20124. Consumers may return the product to Target for a full refund. Consumers with questions may call (800) 463-6144.  via Special Allergy Alerts. Share...

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