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April 2018 Mall Walker Newsletter

April is Food Allergy Action Month

Food allergies, which afflict a large number of American children and adults, are on the increase, but researchers aren’t sure why. With the increase, it’s important to watch for allergic reactions, reduce potential risks and respond quickly for family members and friends if needed.

An allergy to a food can begin at any age. Food allergies are triggered by the immune system and cause an abnormal response to food. Food intolerances can cause symptoms similar to food allergies but the immune system is not involved.

Ninety percent of food allergies are to eight particular foods: milk, eggs, wheat, soy, fish, shellfish, peanuts and tree nuts. Reactions can range from mild (rash or itchy mouth) to severe (anaphylaxis). It’s important to be properly evaluated and diagnosed by a medical professional who will develop an appropriate treatment plan. Food allergies have no cure.

Anyone with a food allergy should be proactive and prepared. Strictly avoid problem foods. Have an anaphylaxis emergency care plan. Wear a medical ID bracelet or necklace with your allergies listed. Carry necessary medication at all times and take it at the first sign of a reaction. For any severe reaction, go to the emergency room.


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