Individuals with food allergies have an allergic reaction when they come in contact with certain foods. This occurs because their immune system overreacts to the proteins in that food. Most food allergies are caused by reactions to:
- Cow's milk
- Tree nuts
Although these are the most common causes of food allergy, allergic reactions can happen with virtually any food. Signs of a food allergy include:
- A rash, or red, itchy skin
- Stuffy or itchy nose, sneezing, or itchy and teary eyes
- Vomiting, stomach cramps or diarrhea
- Angioedema or swelling
Some people with food allergies can have a serious reaction called anaphylaxis. Signs of this kind of reaction include:
- Hoarseness, throat tightness or a lump in the throat
- Wheezing, chest tightness or trouble breathing
- Tingling in the hands or feet, lips or scalp
If you have any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately.
Allergy testing can be performed to confirm a food allergy. Dr. Bathija can provide instruction on reading food labels, a food allergy action plan and treatment with an Epipen.