The allergenic foods produce food allergies, adverse reactions of the body triggered by the immune system. While virtually all foods can cause these reactions, most food allergies are caused by 7 foods or food groups.
The symptoms in this type of allergies can be mild or very severe, and can even cause death, although this is rare. According to WHO data, the prevalence of food allergies in adults is 1% to 3%, while in children, it is 4% to 6%.
What are the most common allergenic foods?
Allergy to cow’s milk is one of the most common in children.
The symptoms can be moderate and manifest at the skin level causing redness of the skin and hives, or they can also be severe, causing an anaphylactic reaction.
It is estimated that approximately 2% of children under the age of 3 have an allergy to cow’s milk.
Virtually all children with this allergy begin to have symptoms during the first year of life and they remain into adulthood.
The intensity of the reaction can vary: some people have severe symptoms by ingesting only a small amount of milk while others have only moderate symptoms by consuming a larger portion.
If your child has an allergy to cow’s milk, the only way to avoid the symptoms is by avoiding the consumption of this food.
It is also very important to carefully read the labels of processed or packaged foods to detect the presence of certain ingredients of milk, such as casein for example.
Egg allergy is also among the most common food allergies, especially in children.
As in the previous case, the symptoms can be mild, moderate or severe.
Those who suffer from an allergy to eggs should avoid its consumption. It is also important to read the labels of processed or packaged foods to identify the presence of certain egg proteins, such as ovalbumin for example.
The influenza virus vaccine and the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and also contain egg protein.
The American Academy of Pediatrics points out that, according to the results of various investigations, vaccines containing egg proteins can be safely administered to allergic patients.
However, if you or your child are allergic to eggs, consult your doctor about the advisability of receiving these vaccines, especially the flu.
Fish is also capable of causing mild (pruritus, hives) or severe (anaphylactic shock) allergic reactions.
In children it is the third most common food allergy, after egg and cow’s milk. However, approximately 40% of people allergic to fish begin to show the first symptoms in adulthood.
As with all food allergies, the only way to avoid the adverse reaction is to avoid eating fish.
Rooster, hake, whiting, salmon, and tuna are the species that most frequently cause allergies, although if you are allergic to fish, it is best to avoid eating any species.
Another of the most common food allergies is the allergy to shellfish. About 60% of people begin to have symptoms in adulthood.
In Spain, allergy to shellfish represents 8% of food allergies.
Shrimp, prawns, crab and lobster are the most allergenic shellfish. Fish and shellfish belong to totally different kinds of animals, so if you are allergic to one group you will not necessarily be allergic to the other.
There are two kinds of shellfish, crustaceans (crab, shrimp, lobster, etc.) and mollusks (oysters, mussels, clams). Allergic reactions to crustaceans are usually the most severe.
In most cases of peanut allergy, the first symptoms appear in children older than three years and tend to persist for life, although it is estimated that 20% of allergic children cease to be allergic by adulthood.
To avoid allergy symptoms you should avoid consuming peanuts. In addition, the labels of packaged or processed foods should be read very carefully, because many of them may contain traces of peanuts.
It should be noted that peanuts are not a dried fruit like hazelnuts or walnuts, but a legume.
So if you or your child are allergic to peanuts, they may not have symptoms when eating nuts, but they should be careful when eating peas, beans, lentils or chickpeas, which are also legumes and are a frequent cause of food allergies.
Without a doubt, nuts are also among the most allergenic foods.
Its allergens are not altered by heat or digestive processes, which generally causes intense and immediate reactions in allergy sufferers.
Mild symptoms may include mouth or general itching, runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes, or redness of the skin.
In severe cases, there may be vomiting, abdominal pain, angioedema, and anaphylactic shock.
If you are allergic to nuts (chestnuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, etc.) you should avoid the intake of course, and also, read the labels of packaged or processed foods very carefully, because they may contain traces of these foods.
7-Fresh fruits and vegetables
In children under 5 years of age, allergy to fresh fruits or vegetables ranks fourth among the most common food allergies, while in adults they are also a common cause of allergies.
Symptoms are usually oropharyngeal (itching of the mouth), although there may also be potentially serious reactions.
The fruits and vegetables that most frequently cause allergies are apple, bananas, citrus fruits, pineapple, kiwi, potato, tomato and turnip, among others.
So now you know, if you have a food allergy or your child has it, in addition to avoiding the foods that cause symptoms, be careful when consuming other products that may contain proteins or traces of them.
And what other allergenic food do you know? I am interested in your opinion. Thank you!