Foods with Soy Lecithin

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Foods with soy lecithin may need to be avoided if you have a soy allergy.

Soy lecithin is present in many different foods. Since it is derived from soybeans, anyone with this food allergy needs to avoid foods made with soy products. In some cases, people who are allergic to soy are able to eat soy lecithin. This is due to the fact that you may be able to tolerate the small amount of protein found in soy lecithin. Soy lecithin is used to make a variety of processed foods and other foods, so be sure to check with your allergist before trying them if you have a soy allergy.

Knowing which foods to avoid if you have a soy allergy

If you have a peanut allergy, you may also be allergic to soy. According to the Cleveland Clinic, soybeans are legumes. Peanuts, a variety of beans, peas, lentils and licorice are also members of the legume family. Your allergist will probably test you to see if you should also avoid eating other legumes if you have a soy allergy since some people are allergic to more than one legume.

Soy allergy is one of the most common allergies in the US

Children under the age of 7 are the group that is most affected by soy allergy in the U.S. Fortunately, many children outgrow this allergy that is not found as frequently in adults. Soy is one of the foods that must be listed on processed food labels according to the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004. It is on the list of the eight most common food allergies, so it must be clearly stated that it is included in a product if it is an ingredient. On the other hand, foods that include soy lecithin are not required to list this ingredient on their food labels.

Soy lecithin contains soy protein and could cause allergy symptoms

There are two soy products that are not required to be posted on food labels. These are soy lecithin and soybean oil. Since these two products contain small amounts of soy protein, they could cause an allergic reaction in someone who is highly sensitive to soy products. The lack of labeling in food products makes it more difficult to know which foods contain this ingredient if you are trying to avoid soy lecithin.

Be prepared in case you accidentally eat food containing soy lecithin

Since so many foods contain soy lecithin, including some infant formulas, baked goods, cake mix, pancake mix, chocolate candies, margarine and others, you can be prepared for an allergic reaction. Doctors often recommend keeping non-drowsy Benadryl on hand in case you have a minor reaction. More severe symptoms should be treated in your hospital emergency room.

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