Food Allergy Overview
Food Allergy Overview and How to Fight It
Isnít it annoying when you smell the delicious aroma of a meal only to
find out that it has an ingredient to which you are allergic? Ah! The
demise of every person with food allergies! It is no fun to watch other
people devour food that seems so delicious but you canít take part of
the experience. How many times have you encountered comments like,
great food isnít? And sometimes you just canít bear to admit you are
allergic and just smile as if you knew how it tasted.
Then you try to ask questions, what is food allergy? What are causing
these annoying symptoms? Whatís happens inside the body during allergic
reactions? Ah! Understanding ones own health condition will better help
them accept and overcome whateverís bothering them.
To start with, food allergy is unusual reaction to certain type of food
allergen. An allergen is the substance or thing that causes the
allergic reactions. Exposure to the allergen sets off the alarm in the
human immune system which consequently releases antibodies to fight off
the invasion of the perceived foreign body that is the food allergen.
It then causes the symptoms you would see when you are in a state of
The aforementioned is just an overview of the whole picture. Looking
more closely, allergic reactions undergo two courses of action. The
initial course is the release of immunoglobulin E or IgE by the immune
system into the blood stream. IgE is a food-specific antibody and a
protein that is the bodyís immune defense against the food allergen.
Following the initial response is the attachment of the IgE to the mast
cells. These mast cells are present in body tissues specially locations
of the body where allergic reactions are common. These locations may
include the lungs, skin, nasal and oral cavities, and the
As for the food itself, you may have noticed that you are not just
allergic to one type of food. There are instances that you experience
an allergic reaction to oyster and then later you found out that you
are also allergic to crabs and other seafoods. This occurrence is what
medical professionals call cross-reactivity, wherein an individual can
be allergic to closely related or similar types of foods.
The only way to deal with this unfortunate mishap is to try as best as
you can to avoid the foods that set off allergic reactions in your
body. There is no cure to food allergy but there are medications out
there that can alleviate its symptoms. With the help of a medical
health professional, you can be assisted in the ways you can avoid
exposures to food allergens. Nutritionists may teach you alternative
ingredients or foods to replace the food that will be eliminated from
your diet. Also, make it a habit to check food labels for possible
ingredients that you may be allergic with and do not hesitate to warn
the restaurant employees, like the waiter, about your food allergy to
prevent any unwanted accidents.
Individuals who are highly allergic are advised to put on medical alert
necklaces or bracelets which declare your condition. As for the
medications, some patients who are very vulnerable are also advised to
bring with them at all times a self-injectible epinephrine, which is
prescribed by the doctor, that can be of great help during sudden
attacks of allergic reactions before seeking out for the assistance of
an emergency team.
Other medications are antihistamines, bronchodilators, and
corticosteroids. Antihistamines help improve symptoms of rhinitis,
hives, rashes, and gastrointestinal problems. Corticosteroids alleviate
the severity of inflammations of the skin and in other areas of the
body. While bronchodilators are utilized to open up air passages of the
respiratory tract that has become inflamed which would have resulted to
To understand more about your food allergies, you can consult your
physician. There are also comprehensive books in the market that can be
easily understood by just about anybody that has complete information
about food allergies and how to fight it.