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3.1 Food Allergies Overview




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This article is from the Children Allergies and Asthma FAQ, by Eileen Kupstas Soo kupstas@cs.unc.edu with numerous contributions by others.

3.1 Food Allergies Overview

Allergies are an immune system reaction to substances that don't
harm most people. This can include pollens, dust, foods, cosmetics,
and such. The body produces antibodies to neutralize the foreign
substance, which triggers the release of histamine, which produces
what we see as allergies or asthma. Treatment can work on any part of
the process: avoiding the allergen, reducing the production of
histamines, etc. Allergies should be taken seriously; most allergic
reactions are merely annoying but some can be life threatening.

A number of people find that the most likely food to cause a problem
is one that you eat the most frequently. In fact, some people report
that they have an almost addictive craving for that food.The craving
may be more intense if you have had the food in the past day or so.
The more of it you have, the more intense the craving becomes. This
can be a clue as to the foods to suspect in your initial search for
allergens. Common foods to think about are milk (and milk products),
wheat (and wheat products), corn (and corn products), and eggs. These
are common foods in Western diets to which many people are
allergic.

Rebecca Leann Smit Crowley (rcrowley@zso.dec.com)
Eileen Kupstas Soo (kupstas@cs.unc.edu)
Andrea Kwiatkowski (andrea@unity.ncsu.edu)
Tammy Schmidt (SFF@dean.watstar.uwaterloo.ca)


 

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