What To Do If You Have A Peanut Or Nut Allergy
After a nut or peanut allergy is confirmed, the first line of treatment is usually to avoid them as there is no cure.
- When shopping, always read food labels. Find out all of the names for nuts and look out for these on food labels and ingredients lists, e.g. peanuts can also be known as beer nuts, groundnuts and monkey nuts
- Nut oils are usually refined, but its recommended that these are avoided to as there may be a trace of nut protein
- When eating out, food outlets should be able to provide a list of food allergens in their products. Its best to always notify the staff about any nut or peanut allergy so that they can ensure the food is safe and not contaminated with any nuts
- If a label states may contain nuts / peanuts its safest to avoid them as it may be contaminated by nuts
- Take care with any foods that are not labelled, or anything suspicious, and if you are unsure whether they contain nuts or nut products its best to avoid them
- NB Some non-foods may contain nut traces, such as tree nut oil soap or shampoo
- Medications: For those with mild or moderate allergic reactions, antihistamines can be used to relieve symptoms. However, as a food allergy can cause some severe and life-threatening reactions, the allergy clinic may prescribe an adrenaline auto-injector pen for use in an emergency, and this should always be kept in easy reach.
For more information about food allergies, visit anaphylaxis.org.uk and allergyuk.org
What Else Should I Know
To help reduce contact with nut allergens and the possibility of reactions in someone with a peanut or tree nut allergy:
- If you keep peanuts and nuts in your home, watch for cross-contamination that can happen with utensils and cookware. For example, make sure the knife you use to make peanut butter sandwiches is not used in preparing food for a child with a nut allergy, and that nut breads are not toasted in the same toaster as other breads.
- Don’t serve cooked foods you didn’t make yourself, or anything with an unknown list of ingredients.
- Tell everyone who handles the food your child eats, from waiters and waitresses to the cafeteria staff at school, about the allergy. If the manager or owner of a restaurant is uncomfortable about your request for peanut- or nut-free food preparation, don’t eat there.
- Consider making your child’s school lunches, as well as snacks and treats to take to parties, play dates, sleepovers, school events, and other outings.
- Work with the childcare supervisor or school principal to make sure the food allergy emergency action plan provided by your allergist is followed correctly.
- Keep epinephrine accessible at all times not in the glove compartment of your car, but with you. Seconds count during an anaphylaxis episode.
A little preparation and prevention can help make sure that your child’s allergy doesn’t get in the way of a happy, healthy everyday life.
How Is An Allergic Reaction Treated
A nut allergy sometimes can cause a severe reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis might start with some of the same symptoms as a less severe reaction, but can quickly get worse. The person may have trouble breathing or pass out. More than one part of the body might be involved. If it isn’t treated, anaphylaxis can be life-threatening.
If your child has a peanut or tree nut allergy , the doctor will want him or her to carry an epinephrine auto-injector in case of an emergency.
An epinephrine auto-injector is a prescription medicine that comes in a small, easy-to-carry container. It’s easy to use. Your doctor will show you how. Kids who are old enough can be taught how to give themselves the injection. If they carry the epinephrine, it should be nearby, not left in a locker or in the nurse’s office.
Wherever your child is, caregivers should always know where the epinephrine is, have easy access to it, and know how to give the shot. Staff at your child’s school should know about the allergy and have an action plan in place. Your child’s medicines should be accessible at all times.
Read Also: Can You Outgrow A Shellfish Allergy
Avoidance Of Nuts And Allergies
It is almost impossible to never come in contact with tree nuts or peanuts during the course of everyday life. However, knowing the aspects of such instances, where they occur and where they are possible can help to avoid contact or ingestion.
Aside from the very obvious of avoiding the actual nuts, you should be aware that there are many foods that contain, use or have contact with nuts. Flavorings, spices, oils and even candy has the potential to contain nuts.
Peanut oil is used for cooking and can cause a reaction even if the food being cooked in the oil isnt a nut. Restaurants need to be screened for cooking habits and when in doubt you should always ask the chef if any nuts, oils or spices are being used in the kitchen.
A lot of places will allow you to ask for a non-peanut or non-tree nut dish and in most cases, the chefs will prepare your meal separately from any possible cross contamination. However, it is not a guarantee that you wont have any contact at all.
Food allergies are very common when it comes to peanuts and tree nuts. You should always be aware of the symptoms.
Children Outgrow Food Allergies: You Need To Retest
Our children have been allergic to peanuts since they were babies, breaking out in hives when there were even trace amounts in any food they ate. So weve listed their allergy in all the forms we fill out each year for the school, and avoided bringing peanuts into our home.
Then one child brought home a form that asked us to provide the school with an EpiPen, or get documentation from a doctor that showed he did not need it.
It turns out that in 2013 Congress passed the federal School Access to Emergency Epinephrine Act to help protect students at risk of anaphylactic reactions caused by food or insect sting allergies, or other triggers. The law encourages states to require schools to keep a supply of epinephrine auto-injectors, like EpiPen on hand and train school nurses and other staff members in their use. A number of states have complied with the recommendation, and schools routinely request that parents provide an auto-injector if their child has known allergies.
EpiPen has had its share of issues in recent years. In by the Food and Drug Administration when Pfizer, EpiPens manufacturer, notified the agency that people were having problems using the device. Some of the problems were from user error and some were a result of EpiPen malfunction. The FDA did not order a recall, but urged people to be aware of potential problems with the device.
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Can You Treat A Peanut Allergy
The common assumption about allergies is that you need to avoid contact with the responsible allergen. While this approach will help you avoid an allergic reaction, with peanut traces prevalent in so many products, it is quite difficult to maintain avoidance. If you want to live without worry about accidentally consuming peanuts, you should consider oral immunotherapy treatment.
Oral immunotherapy involves eating small amounts of peanut protein until the immune system builds up a tolerance. The amount of peanuts you eat is gradually increased over the course of a year, desensitizing you to the allergen. Oral immunotherapy has proven to be an effective response to peanut allergies, and is performed by a limited number of experienced allergists.
What Causes Nut Allergy
If you are allergic to nuts, when you first come into contact with nuts your immune system reacts and prepares to fight. However, you don’t get any symptoms of a reaction. It is only when you come into contact with nuts for a second time that a full allergic reaction happens. Most children who are allergic to nuts have the symptoms of an allergic reaction when they appear to be exposed to nuts for the first time. However, this is probably not their first exposure, but their second. They may already have come into contact with nuts through their mother, through either of the following:
- Whilst they were in the womb .
- Through breast milk if they were breast-fed.
Most people with nut allergy react after contact with small amounts and some people may react to trace amounts. This means that you don’t always have to eat nuts to have a reaction. A few people are so sensitive to nut allergens that a tiny amount on their lips, or even standing next to someone eating peanuts, can be enough to start a reaction.
There are lots of different allergens but nuts cause some of the strongest and most severe reactions. Doctors don’t yet know why this is.
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What Are The Signs Of A Peanut Allergy In A Breastfed Baby
If you are breastfeeding your baby when an allergy to peanuts develops, there may be some early signs of a reaction. These include:
- A rash
- Tummy ache and/or vomiting
- Irritability or fussiness
- However, many breastfed babies with a peanut allergy develop no early signs of an allergy.
If you think that your baby has a peanut allergy you should consult with your pediatrician. Here are a few more resources that can educate you on how to determine if your child has peanut allergies and what you can do.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Nut Allergy
Both peanuts and tree nuts can cause allergic reactions. Allergic reactions to nuts can vary from mild to very severe, and are sometimes life-threatening. Symptoms often start very quickly, within an hour of having come into contact with a nut, and sometimes within minutes. Reactions that take place more than four hours after coming into contact with nuts are unlikely to be an allergy.
Signs and symptoms of a mildallergic reaction can include:
- Your mouth and lips tingling.
- Your face swelling.
- Colicky pains in your tummy .
- A feeling of tightness around your throat.
Signs and symptoms of a more severeallergic reaction can include:
- All of the above.
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing due to an asthma-like attack, or swelling around your throat.
- A sense of impending doom.
- Dilation of your blood vessels, which can cause:
- General redness of your skin.
- A fast heart rate.
- Low blood pressure, which can cause you to feel faint or to collapse.
This severe reaction is called anaphylaxis and without quick treatment you would soon become unconscious. A small number of people die every year as a result of this kind of severe reaction, usually because they do not obtain treatment quickly enough. If you think you are having an anaphylactic reaction you need to call an ambulance straightaway and obtain immediate medical help.
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Peanut Allergy Try Sunbutter Cookies 3 Ways
Do you struggle with a peanut allergy? Let me introduce you to the mighty sunflower seed and its commercial, spreadable greatness in the form of Sunbutter. Here are Sunbuter peanut butter cookies 3 ways!
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Could Boiling Peanuts Lead To A Cure For Food Allergies
The idea behind boiling peanuts is based on principles of immunotherapy, as well as experience associated with other food allergies.
Past studies have shown that through extensive heating, allergens in certain foods, such as milk and egg, are altered. Most people with milk and egg allergies tolerate these foods when they are extensively heated. And, some people with milk or egg allergies who frequently eat these products in their heated form outgrow their allergies.
A recent study was performed on four children with peanut allergies who ate boiled peanuts in increasing amounts every day over the course of months. After months of this exposure, some of the children were able to eat raw peanuts. Experts suggest that sustained and frequent exposure to low amounts of Ara h 2 may lead to the development of oral tolerance.
While these results are not definitive in terms of directing any type of treatment for peanut allergy, the information adds to the scientific knowledge about peanut allergies.
If you have a peanut allergy, it is very important that you do not try eating boiled peanuts at home on your own. The above-mentioned study only included a small number of patients, and people who have a peanut allergy can experience severe life-threatening allergic reactions from eating boiled peanuts.
If you have been diagnosed with a peanut allergy, you can talk to your physician about whether you qualify to take Palforzia or to participate in any research trials.
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What Treatments Are Available For A Peanut Allergy
Outgrowing a peanut allergy may still require some caution and maintenance. Johns Hopkins Medicine advises children to eat concentrated forms of peanut products, such as peanut butter, at least once a month to retain tolerance levels. You may also need to carry an epinephrine auto-injector in case of emergencies.
For the many children who still experience reactions to peanuts, there are options beyond simply avoiding harmful foods. Oral immunotherapy treatment is a process of desensitization, with patients consuming small amounts of peanut protein over many months. The intake levels are periodically increased to allow the immune system to build tolerance. Over time, you should be able to eat peanuts and not suffer an allergic reaction.
What Is A Peanut Allergy
Peanut allergy develops when the bodys immune system has an abnormal, hypersensitivity response to one or more of the peanut proteins. Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies in both children and adults. It receives particular attention because it is relatively common, typically lifelong, and can cause severe allergic reactions. Peanut allergy is the leading cause of anaphylaxis and death due to food allergy. It can lead to significant burden on patients and their families. Peanut is a common food ingredient making strict avoidance difficult. Therefore, there is a relatively high rate of accidental peanut ingestions for those trying to avoid peanuts. For all of the above reasons, peanut allergy has become an important public-health issue.
This prevalence of peanut allergy has increased significantly over the past decade, most notably in westernized countries. The prevalence of peanut allergy in westernized countries is approximately 0.5%, with the greatest prevalence in children under 3 years of age. This increase in prevalence has also occurred with other allergic conditions, such as eczema , asthma, and hay fever . Peanut allergy is much less common in underdeveloped areas of the world, such as Africa and Asia. Emerging literature suggests that the increasing rate of peanut allergy may be leveling off in many nations, including the United States.
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Food Allergies In Adults
Adults can develop food allergies as well. You might have a reaction to something randomly or even to something to which you were previously allergic. Avoid any food that causes you to have a reaction, and contact your doctor to learn more about the possible allergy.
If you have allergy symptoms or think that you may have outgrown an allergy, ask your doctor to confirm it.
Can A Peanut Allergy Be Outgrown
Studies show that an estimated 2025% of children experiencing a peanut allergy will outgrow it. Of those that outgrow their allergy, 80% do so by the age of eight. While this data offers relief to many parents, it still means a large proportion of individuals will need to manage their condition.
Additionally, it can be hard to determine exact figures as many parents and children carry a fear of peanuts for many years. After experiencing a severe allergic reaction, it is natural to continue avoiding peanuts even if you may no longer be allergic. However, with the help of a food allergy doctor, tests can safely determine whether the allergy has gone away.
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Can You Outgrow Your Allergies
ByMichael Dhar28 August 2013
Most people with allergies first develop them as children or infants. But as they age, some individuals seem to leave their hay fever, pet allergies or even food allergies behind.
Doctors don’t know exactly why, but people’s allergies actually can disappear over time. And even when they don’t disappear, allergies vary significantly.
The severity of allergic reactions differs widely among people, and even within the same individual, allergic reactions can change in severity from season to season and from allergen to allergen. For example, a neighbor’s cat might send you into a sneezing fit, while a different feline could provoke nary a reaction at all.
In general, doctors do know what causes allergies: Your immune system overreacts to a harmless substance. When functioning correctly, your body’s defenses attack foreign invaders, like viruses. With allergies, the immune system mistakenly targets pollen, pet dander or certain foods, for example, sending molecules called immunoglobulin E antibodies to orchestrate a “defense.”
In cases of disappearing allergies, some experts theorize that the person may simply grow accustomed to the allergen, thus reducing the level of immune-system sensitivity.
“Growing accustomed” seems important in allergies to food, particularly nuts. Some doctors have recently emphasized promoting tolerance to the food through low-level exposure that’s gradually increased.