Monday, October 18, 2010

A new food allergy study from the NIH

Finally.  Food allergies are getting more national attention from the medical community.  An article just came out about a study funded by Johns Hopkins and the National Institute of Health (NIH) that 3 in 100 people have genuine food allergies, most of them children under 5.

Interestingly, they used blood tests for antibodies, rather than scratch tests, which have been generally agreed are more accurate for food allergies, so this 3% number may actually be higher.

Also speaking of testing, I was in my allergist's office the other day for my weekly shot (for my also-numerous environmental allergies), and saw that they had little baggies of fresh shrimp, a sandwich, etc. on the counter.  When I asked what they were doing, they said "fresh food allergy tests.  They're more accurate than even scratch tests."  Interesting. Has anyone had this done in addition to, or instead of scratch tests?

Hopefully we can finally get more well-researched scientific information from balanced, credible sources so that we can stop only getting hysterical anectdotal reports about either "food allergies taking over our kids' lives" or conversely "everyone is getting too neurotic about food allergies".  I like to think we can find a happy balance in the middle.  "Vigilance not panic" is one of my mottoes.  Stay safe, peeps!

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