Do You or Someone You Know Have a Food Allergy / Reaction to Food?
I know first hand how hard it can be to live with food allergies.
When I was working in the hospital in Germany as an allergist, I witnessed many patients with food allergies having a serious reaction (which was fortunate, because by being there I could take measure to help them immediately).
What can you do immediately if you witness a serious allergic reaction to food (or a bee sting…)?
1)Ask the person if they carry an epi-pen. If they do and there is time, get it ready to use.
2) If the person feels faint, short of breath or starts getting unconscious or is already unconscious, use the epi-pen immediately. Otherwise hold off and call 9-1-1 (or your local emergency number) first
3) Call 9-1-1 (even if you have used the epi-pen, because the epipen only lasts for 15-20 min, usually enough to give the sufferer professional help)
4) If the person is already unconscious, check breathing and heartbeat and start CPR.
Nowadays many of my clients or friends have some kind of reaction to foods. It seems to be an epidemic these days…
Do you ever wonder why food allergies are so frequent nowadays?
In today’s world of stress, processed food devoid in nutrients, toxins in the environment, and quick-fixes with medications and overuse of antibiotics, especially in raising livestock animals, I am sometimes amazed that not everyone is sick…
Now to Food Allergies, and I mean the life-threatening, immediate-type allergies that can be serious and life-threatening.
What do you do if you or someone you know has it?
Food Allergies are a big topic and I’d like to bring more awareness to them. If an immediate-type food allergy happens very quickly and involves several systems (e.g. lungs, skin, vasculatory system), it is called anaphylaxis.
What is anaphylaxis from a Food Allergy?
Anaphylaxis is a serious allergic reaction that comes on quickly. If it is severe enough, it could cause death. Anaphylaxis can be brought on by a host of factors, one of which is an immediate-type food allergy.
It typically causes more than one of the following symptoms: an itchy rash (hives or wheals), throat or tongue swelling, shortness of breath, vomiting, lightheadedness, and low blood pressure.
Whether you live with food allergies or care for someone who does, you probably wonder what you can do to avoid or treat a serious reaction, should it occur…
Food allergies are more than just an itch or a stomachache. They can cause symptoms as serious as vomiting, difficulty breathing, and a loss of consciousness.
Some of the most common food allergies are shellfish, peanuts, eggs, milk, and soy.
Immediate-type Food allergies are not only potentially life-threatening, they’re also life-altering. People with food allergies must always be “allergy aware” to ensure they avoid reactions.
This means that real food allergies, and those who live with them, should always be taken seriously.
How can you avoid a serious allergic reaction if I have a food allergy?
Even a trace of a food allergen can trigger a severe reaction in certain individuals.
If you suffer from immediate-type food allergies, you must remove the allergen completely from your diet to stay safe and prevent it from interfering with your overall health.
What about Cross-Contamination?
Avoiding the cross-contamination of safe food with your food allergen is just as important as avoiding the allergen itself.
Cross-contamination occurs when an allergen is accidentally transferred from one food to another. This can easily happen in restaurants, which can make it difficult for those suffering from allergies to enjoy a meal out.
Food Allergy, Food Sensitivity or Food Intolerance?
Food allergies also often get confused with food sensitivities. These are delayed type food allergies, which are often IgG-mediated, typical is a non-celiac gluten-sensitivity. There are also food intolerances, which means certain – naturally occurring – chemicals in the foods cause a reaction without directly involving the immune system. Best known are lactose intolerance or MSG-Intolerance (the “China-Restaurant-Syndrome).
Here is why it is important to know the difference.
Unlike food sensitivities and -intolerances, immediate-type food allergies are “IgE mediated.” This means that your immune system produces an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE for short) against the offending food. It acts in the mistaken “belief” that this food is an “enemy”.
IgE antibodies try to fight the “enemy food” by releasing histamine and other chemicals. These chemicals then trigger the symptoms of an allergic reaction, or in severe cases, anaphylactic shock.
Spread the Word!
One of the best ways to avoid a serious allergic reaction is to familiarize yourself with the facts and help spread awareness.
If you’d like to help make people aware of the dangers of food allergies next week, here is what to do:
Share or forward this article with family and friends who suffer from a reaction to food.
This is not another food fad; it is a serious and possibly lethal condition and should be treated as such.
So next week, if you suffer from food allergies, talk to people and help them understand the severity of your health issue.
And if you or someone you know could use some help figuring out what’s really going on with her/him, schedule a FREE consultation with me!
Can Food Allergies be helped? I believe in most cases they can. There have been studies that 70% of children with peanut allergies given certain supplements and/or treatments were able to eat small amounts of the previosly offending food again.
But please do not try that on your own at home, since it can trigger an anaphylactic reaction if not done correctly.
I am here to help!