4 Important Tips for Dealing with Food Allergies Safely & Effectively

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wheat is a common source of food allergies
Taken by Polina Rytova via unsplash.com. [Public Domain].

Food allergies affect many people: studies estimate that 11 percent of adults and eight percent of children in the United States have food allergies.

Allergies result when the body’s immune system triggers an abnormal response to food. These responses can be extremely concerning and, in many cases, life-threatening. However, there are several specific ways to manage your situation and to prevent yourself from coming into contact with dangerous allergens.

Here we offer some important tips for dealing with food allergies.

Be Sure to Read Food Labels

Reading food labels properly and thoroughly is one of the first steps to reducing your risk of ingesting any food to which you’re allergic. Food product labels are designed with the intent to provide the consumer with every bit of information about a product.

Keeping consumers safe from potential allergens is a key aspect of the importance of properly labeling food products. All food-producing companies are under strict regulations to include all the ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction on product labels.

Prevent Cross-Contact and Contamination

You can avoid the foods you know you’re allergic to, but you also need to ensure that any food you intend to eat hasn’t come in contact with allergenic foods. This can happen very easily when an allergen is accidentally transferred from an allergenic food to a food containing no allergens.

This makes it very important to thoroughly clean all your cooking utensils and to keep any foods with allergens in separate locations. It’s also imperative to remember to cook any allergenic foods completely separately from non-allergenic foods to avoid cross-contamination.

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Be Aware of Your Symptoms

This is one of the most important tips for dealing with food allergies. Knowing your symptoms can mean the difference between life and death. The worst reaction a person can have is anaphylaxis. The symptoms leading up to a state of anaphylactic shock can seem like something you don’t need to worry too much about, but not recognizing the beginnings of anaphylaxis is what puts many people in severe situations.

They might experience itchy skin, hives, rashes, eye irritation, shortness of breath, and swelling in the mouth or throat, to name a few. Be sure to investigate further into how you can recognize symptoms of anaphylaxis.

Always Have a Plan for an Emergency

Any person with a life-threatening food allergy needs to have a plan if things go wrong. Accidents can happen. If you’re served a meal at a restaurant only to realize you’ve an allergen that’s dangerous to you, you’ll need the people around you to know. If you must get to a hospital or call the paramedics, not having anyone to help you could be life-threatening.

Many online resources can help you create a well-written plan that will keep your family and friends informed of what to do if you ingest the wrong food. Always being equipped with an EpiPen and sharing the knowledge of the correct dosage you would need to receive should be included in this plan.

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