- How many people have food allergies?
- It may seem like more, but only 4% of adults and 4% of children have food allergies.
- About 90% of food allergies are caused by: tree nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews, pistachios ,etc.), peanuts, milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, wheat, and soy.
- What about peanut allergies?
- About 0.6 – 1.0 % of people have peanut allergy, which can vary from mild to severe.
- Nearly 20% of peanut allergies can be outgrown.
- Four times as many people are allergic to seafood than to peanuts.
- It seems like more people have peanut allergies, why?
- The prevalence of peanut allergy doubled from 1997 to 2002.
- There may be better reporting and improved detection of allergies, which should be diagnosed by a physician.
- The reported increase in peanut allergy mirrors an overall increase in childhood allergies.
- Are all peanut allergies severe?
- No, some are mild, however in those who have severe reactions, ingesting just a trace amount can cause a reaction.
- It is critical to manage peanut allergies, as with any allergy, to avoid severe reactions, such as “anaphylaxis.”
- What is the allergen in peanuts?
- The major proteins Ara h1, Ara h2, and Ara h3 are the allergens in peanuts.
- Smelling the aroma of peanuts cannot cause an allergic reaction.
- What about peanut oil?
- Highly refined peanut oil is different from peanuts and from “crude” or gourmet peanut oil because it does not contain peanut allergens.
- Highly refined peanut oil is purified, refined, bleached, and deodorized, which removes the allergic proteins from the oil.
- The majority of peanut oil used by foodservice has been highly refined and processed.
- The FDA does not consider highly refined peanut oil as a food allergen.
Click here to see more by downloading the fact sheet on peanut allergy.
To download the full White Paper on Peanut Allergy, click here.