Food Allergy Facts

Did you know?

  • Infants who have food allergies are more likely to develop asthma later on in childhood.
  • Allergies often begin early in life. Before or at the same time food allergies develop, young children may also get eczema – itchy red skin and rashes. When children with eczema later develop food allergies, allergic rhinitis and then asthma, it is called the “allergic march.” 

  • In the U.S., about one in 13 children have a food allergy.
  • The percentage of people with peanut allergy is rising. Reactions to peanuts are more severe, and peanut allergy causes more deaths than any other food allergy.

  • Black children are 7% more likely to have food allergies than white children, and 80% more likely to have a peanut allergy.
  • Asian children are 24% more likely than white children to have food allergies. 

  • There is no “test” to diagnose a food allergy, like a blood test. The most accepted way to diagnose food allergy is through a doctor taking a medical history and asking about symptoms. A doctor may also recommend an oral food challenge. 
  • The top eight food allergies are: peanuts, tree nuts, cow’s milk, eggs, wheat, soy, fish and shellfish.
  • Many fresh and allergy-friendly foods are more expensive and difficult to find in stores. 

  • Allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis, asthma, and sesame allergy are more common among people of Middle Eastern/North African descent.

  • Black children are more likely to be allergic to wheat and soy than white children, and both Black and Hispanic children are more likely to be allergic to corn, shellfish and fish. 




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