Food allergy is an abnormal response to a food triggered by
the body’s immune system. Food allergy
refers to a particular type of response of the immune system
in which the body produces what is called an allergic, or IgE,
antibody to a food. (IgE, or immunoglobulin E, is a type
of protein that works against a specific food.)
Allergic reactions to food can cause serious illness and, in
some cases, death. Therefore, if you have a food allergy, it is
extremely important for you to work with your healthcare
provider to find out what food(s) causes your allergic reaction.
Sometimes, a reaction to food is not an allergy at all but
another type of reaction called “food intolerance.”
Food intolerance is more common than food allergy. The
immune system does not cause the symptoms of food
intolerance, though these symptoms may look and feel
like those of a food allergy.
Food allergy affects up to 6 to 8 percent of children under
the age of 3 and close to 4 percent of adults. If you have
an unpleasant reaction to something you have eaten, you
might wonder if you have a food allergy. One out of three
people either believe they have a food allergy or modify their
or their family’s diet. Thus, while food allergy is commonly
suspected, healthcare providers diagnose it less frequently
than most people believe.
Courtesy: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
|| San Antonio, Texas
Introduction to Allergies
What is an allergy?
What is allergic rhinitis? (Hay Fever)
Why are some people allergic?
What is an allergic reaction?
What Is Food Allergy?
Introduction to Asthma
What are Hives?