Thursday, January 13, 2011

Have a Food Allergy? It’s Time to Recheck


Food allergies have generated a great deal of anxiety in recent years, with some schools going so far as to ban popular staples — especially peanut butter — after appeals from worried parents.

Some airlines have quit serving peanut snacks, and more and more restaurants are offering dishes for diners concerned about gluten or dairy allergies.

There is no question that some foods, especially peanuts and shellfish, can provoke severe reactions in a small fraction of the population. But a new analysis of the best available evidence finds that many children and adults who think they have food allergies are mistaken. [...]


  1. in the us, mothers are paranoid that their children have peanut allergies. (i personally think the allergy is in the mother's head, not in the child's body. but if i say that, i'll get angry comments from mothers.)

    anyway, in israel, peanut allergies are non existent.

    because children are fed bamba from infancy.

  2. If you'd like, I'll be happy to introduce you to a few native born Israeli with severe peanut allergies. Not a mild "eat it and get congested and have a little trouble breathing" allergy like I have, but the kind where they can easily die from them. Let me know if you're interested.

    I believe you're referring to this study: . For those who do not bother following links, the basic gist is that Jewish UK children were found to have approximately 10 times the rate of peanut allergies of Israeli children. While suggestive, it cannot be considered proven at this time. [another good paper to look at would be ]

    In the interest of full disclosure, I can share that our kids all ate peanut products "Israeli style", and none of them suffer from peanut allergies. Given an average of <2% allergies in the US population [note: not mentioned in the links above], these 4 samples are statistically worthless.


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