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A 33-year-old member asked:

Why do some people have food allergies?

3 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Stephen Kimura
Allergy and Immunology 36 years experience
Great question!: We know that genetics play a part. Allergic parents tend to have allergic kids. Exposure to the food allergen is controversial. It appears that early exposure to foods can cause allergies to develop. How early is the question. Some recent studies even show the opposite effect. I always counsel high risk kids, to avoid highly allergenic foods early. Foods such as nuts, peanuts, shellfish.
Dr. Yoram Padeh
Allergy and Immunology 23 years experience
Genes + Exposures: There are genetic predispositions for allergies in general, and to specific types of allergies as well (e.g. Food vs medication vs environmental allergies). However, just the genetics does not guarantee developing an allergy. There must also be an exposure in the "right" situation to trigger the allergy. The details of the "right" situation remains unclear.
Dr. Steven Machtinger
Allergy and Immunology 45 years experience
I agree with Dr. Padeh. Current research is looking at adding highly allergenic foods to the diet earlier rather than delaying their introduction for several years. Current guidelines on introducing foods to infants no longer recommend delaying.
Sep 16, 2012
Dr. Alyson Simpson
Allergy and Immunology 18 years experience
Multiple reasons: There is still a lot of research on this topic. And multiple environmental and genetic factors. Some studies suggest that touching certain foods prior to eating them increases our sensitization. There are studies looking into whether children with eczema and atopic dermatiits are more prone to food allergy secondary to the poor skin barrier.

Similar questions

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A 24-year-old female asked:

Why do many people not understand about food allergies?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. John Chiu
Allergy and Immunology 58 years experience
Complex: This subject is garnering increasing interest in recent years. The problem with food allergies is that they can manifest in so many different ways and be mediated by different immune systems (other than just IgE alone). In addition, some food proteins are toxic to a selected group of people and some foods (such as fish) are just disliked by the individual.
A 21-year-old member asked:

What is a food allergy?

4 doctor answers13 doctors weighed in
Dr. Paul Carter
A Verified Doctoranswered
31 years experience
Reaction to a food.: People can become allergic to many substances including certain foods. Some foods are more likely, such as milk, egg, wheat, soybean, shellfish, peanut, or nuts. Reactions can range from rash and itching to anaphylactic shock.

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Last updated Jul 17, 2017
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