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Tree Nut Allergies May Be Massively Overdiagnosed

Via Blend Images / Alamy
Via Blend Images / Alamy

 

The results of a new study on tree nut allergies…

Millions of Americans live in fear of the peanut. And for good reason: These humble legumes are associated with some of the most severe of all food-related allergic reactions, including life-threatening anaphylaxis. Moreover, studies show that peanut allergies in children have more than tripled from 1997 to 2008, leading to what the National Institutes of Health have deemed a “growing public health problem.”

It’s no wonder that the once-ubiquitous peanut butter and jelly sandwich has been quietly disappearing from school menus around the nation. But sadly for the peanut-allergic, the trouble often doesn’t end with PB&J. Many also know the frustration of having to studiously avoid chocolate chip cookies with walnuts, candy bars with almonds, ice cream with pistachios, or any other delicious treat made with tree nuts.

After all, as they’ve been warned by their doctors, skin and blood test results reveal that those with peanut allergies are also often allergic to tree nuts. Better safe than sorry, right?

Read on at Smithsonian Magazine.

New Study: Feeding Peanut To Babies Reduces Allergy Risk

Anna/Flickr, via The Salt
Anna/Flickr, via The Salt

Babies at high risk for becoming allergic to peanuts are much less likely to develop the allergy if they are regularly fed foods containing the legumes starting in their first year of life.

That’s according to a big new study released Monday involving hundreds of British babies. The researchers found that those who consumed the equivalent of about 4 heaping teaspoons of peanut butter each week, starting when they were between 4 and 11 months old, were about 80 percent less likely to develop a peanut allergy by their fifth birthday.

Read the rest on The Salt.

Experimental Treatment For Milk Allergy May Not Last

One out of every 13 children a food allergy, but the affliction still regularly stumps doctors. As Kari Nadeau, director of the Stanford Alliance for Food Allergy Research, Terry Gross in April on Fresh Air, researchers still don’t understand what “flips the switch between a food allergen versus a food nutrient in children.” While the origins of food allergies remain unclear, scientists are learning how to treat them.

 

Click here to read more at NPR.org.