Food Allergy - Causes, Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention
Posted: Feb 19, 2021
Food allergy is one of the most common types of allergic reactions experienced by humans. A food item that may prove to be a source of health and nutrition for one may cause allergic reaction to another. The reaction may be mild for some while severe for others. So, one must be very careful while trying something new. This is the reason why most new parents hesitate to introduce new food items to their little ones. But did you know that every baby is at risk for developing a food allergy?
Read on to learn all about food allergy.
Our immune system identifies certain food items as harmful and thus triggers cells to release antibodies to neutralize the effect of the allergy causing substance. At every subsequent intake of that food item, the antibodies sense it and inform the same to the immune system that releases chemicals which in turn cause allergy symptoms. Some of the food items that are commonly known to cause food allergy include peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, cow’s milk, eggs, soy, crab and fish.
Symptoms vary from person to person and also based on the food items. Here are some of the common symptoms of food allergy:
- Skin redness
- Swelling on the face or lips
- Abdominal pain
- Rapid pulse
- Loss of consciousness
- Low blood pressure
These symptoms may occur within few minutes or up to two-three hours of eating the aforementioned food items.
It is best to consult a doctor if you identify any signs or symptoms of food allergy.
The best way to prevent food allergy is to introduce babies with allergens when they are still 4 -6 months old. Not only is this age group least susceptible to this type of allergy but introduction of allergens at such a tender age also bars the chance of developing allergic reaction to those items later in life. This is the reason why the 2020-2025 edition of the USDA guidelines advises parents to introduce allergenic food to infants. Those suffering with conditions such as eczema or have a family history of food allergy must particularly be given these items at this age so as to break the chain.
If things were not taken charge of at an early age and a person becomes allergic to certain substances then it is best to avoid them.
Though, food allergy may not be severe in most cases however it causes discomfort and pain. So, it is best to follow the new guidelines by USDA to avoid the occurrence of such allergic reactions. Just introduce your little ones to allergens as they turn six months old.
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