Written By Emma Sturgis / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
Of the over 50 million Americans with allergies, nearly six percent of people ranging from babies to adults suffer with food-related allergies. Allergies are the immune system’s natural response to a perceived threat based on what they eat. Common food allergies include dairy, fish, gluten, shellfish, and tree nuts.
Food allergies range in severity. While some experience mild symptoms like hives and irritation, others go into anaphylactic shock.
If left untreated, a severe food-related allergy attack is fatal. Therefore, it’s important to understand the extent of an allergy and learn how to maneuver, especially in social situations.
Here are tips to take control of dieting with a food-related allergy.
Identify the Triggers of food allergies
While some people realize a certain reaction to various foods, they misinterpret the specific trigger. The best way to get an accurate cause of food allergies is undergoing allergen testing. To start, allergists ask questions about the quantity of a food eaten, when symptoms show up, and the duration of those symptoms.
After the questionnaire, they’ll run a series of tests. For every test they use, professional allergists always have emergency medicine on hand in case of severe reactions.
Once the allergist identifies the triggers, it's easier to apply caution with future food choices.
For instance, allergy sufferers may choose simply prepared foods to minimize risk. Avoiding sauces and complex recipes make it less likely to encounter any of the previously identified allergens.
Read the Labels when you have food allergies
Although it seems tedious, reading food labels is a nearly fool-proof way to avoid an allergic reaction. For example, if peanuts trigger an allergy, check labels for peanuts, oils, or potential cross-contamination. Oftentimes, commercial brand labels alert customers if their product’s factory manufactures common allergens.
Carry Emergency Medication if you have food allergies
It’s not always easy to read a label or get the ingredients, especially at a social gathering. Therefore, keep emergency medication like an epinephrine auto-injector in case of a severe allergic reaction.
They control symptoms long enough to seek emergency care. Allergists teach their patients how to use these prescriptions, especially for younger people eating without supervision. Use this medication immediately after noticing severe symptoms.
Food allergies aren’t always avoidable. In severe cases, it’s best to know how to keep them under control until reaching emergency medical attention.
Knowing which allergens are triggers, paying attention to ingredients, and carrying medication are great ways to take control of dieting with food-related allergies.
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Emma Sturgis is a freelance writer based out of Boston, Mass. She writes most often on health and education. When not writing, she enjoys reading and watching film noir. Say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.