Tree Nut Allergies

Tree Nut AllergiesS

Tree nut allergies are the most commonly reported food allergy in the world. It affects millions of people around the world and is basically a hypersensitivity to nuts that may cause the immune system to overreact and cause illness. Tree nuts include various different products such as chestnuts, pistachios, walnuts, pecans, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts and more commonly, peanuts among many others. Those who have tree nut allergies are often allergic to all tree nuts, not just one specific type of nut. If you have an allergy to nuts it is important that you avoid all nuts to ensure that you do not have an allergic reaction. However, there are many people who are allergic to specifically one type of nut. For instance, someone may be allergic to peanuts but show not allergic response to pistachios.

Allergy Severity

The severity of tree nut allergies is different in different people. Some may simply display symptoms such as a rash or itching while others could have fatal allergic reactions. Exposure to tree nuts can cause the allergies to become more sensitive so those who have tree nut allergies are always advised to avoid any type of tree nut or oils that are produced from tree nuts. The most severe reaction involves anaphylaxis which can be fatal. In order to determine allergies to tree nuts medical tests are done and evaluated. Peanut allergies are considered to be different from tree nut allergies so if you have an allergy to peanuts then you may not be allergic to other tree nuts, although doctors normally advise against any type of tree nuts when allergy symptoms first occur. Tree nut allergies are often lifelong ailments although it has been shown that as many as nine percent of all children with these allergies do outgrow them over time.

Treatment for Tree Nut Allergies

Treatment methods have improved over the past few decades as more and more people are becoming allergic to nuts. Treatment typically includes the advisement against eating tree nuts and avoiding other foods that may contain tree nuts or tree nut oils. Many schools now forbid the use of peanuts and other nuts in foods to avoid allergic reactions in students. Epinephrine is used widely as treatment for severe allergic reactions, particularly when anaphylaxis is involved.

Where Tree Nuts are Found

Tree nuts are found in a variety of foods and other products. The United States Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act now requires that any tree nut product included in various items be listed on the label to prevent allergic reactions. Foods such as baklava, pralines, nougat, pesto, marzipan and others contain tree nuts or tree nut oils and should be avoided by those with allergies. Tree nuts may also be found in various coffees, creamers, cereals, ice cream, energy bars, candy, chocolate and many marinades and barbecue sauces. Other products that may contain tree nut oils include various soaps and lotions. Again, if you have tree nut allergies then you should take the time to learn how to properly read the labels of all foods that you ingest and avoid those hygiene products that contain various tree nut oils.

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