what about other nuts???

2 replies [Last post]
By 5boys4me on Tue, 05-26-09, 02:46

I posted this on the main board too but I thought maybe that was the wrong spot.

My 2.5 yr old son is allergic to peanuts. Just the actual peanut. He's been fine with all other food that say they MAY have peanuts in them, like prepackaged stuff. He's had sunflower seed butter and sesame seeds. I want to try almonds. Should that be a concern. This is all new to me. I have 5 little boys and this is the first food allergy I've had to deal with.
Also, what about other nuts???
Thanks!

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By Ashley5473 on Tue, 05-26-09, 03:34

Two things:

My daughter was fine with the "may contains" too, for about a year until she got a cupcake that did contain a trace amount of peanut and she had horrible hives and eczema for a month. So, now I have to be really careful...not all "may contains" contain, but it just takes one!

About almonds. Most nuts are processed in the same plants and contain peanut proteins. I would say it depends on how allergic he is to peanuts and how bad a cross contamination issue would be. My daughter is incredibly sensitive to peanut proteins (contact reactions, anaphylaxis), so I can't risk her eating anything made in the same place as peanuts. But peanuts are legumes and tree nuts are tree nuts, so except for cross contamination, your son may not be allergic to nuts at all...it may be a little early to try it though, I mean don't they say you should wait on highly allergenic foods? Okay, I am rambling....

I would go with "no". Wait til he's 3 and get a skin prick test....then talk to your doctor about it.

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By BestAllergySites on Tue, 05-26-09, 13:45

5boys4me,

I'll answer here and then copy to the other area as well so you see the answer in both places.

First off I want to say that studies/tests have shown a detectable amount of peanut protein in 10% of foods labeled with warning labels such as "processed in" or "may contains".

We too were eating such foods until our allergist told us the info above. The problem is that it's like playing Russian Roulette. Today there might be no detectable amounts of pnut protein in those pretzels, tomorrow there may be lots due to poor or different cleaning practices.

In my opinion, manufacturers put those warning labels on their products for a reason. Either they are not comfortable with their own cleaning practices or they truly feel that there could be a trace amount of peanut. How much-no one can know or tell. As Ashley5473 said-it can happen. Why take the risk?

Regarding other foods/allergens. I am not an allergist, but I am of the opinion that it is not wise to eliminate foods from your diet that you are not allergic to as it could back fire and cause an allergy down the road.

That being said, there are people who are pnut allergic that are also allergic to tree nuts (like my son). And there are others that are only allergic to a single tree nut or peanut. However-tree nuts are often manufactured in the same facilities as pnuts and have traces of pnuts on them so many individuals avoid. As others have said, there are some tree nuts processed in dedicated facilities or you can buy nuts and shell yourself.

As others have said, peanut is in fact a legume and not a nut. But unless you have a history of reaction and/or positive testing to any other food I would not avoid a food or whole family of foods like legumes just because there is a peanut allergy.

My son is allergic to peanut and tests show soy as well, but he tolerates soy in processed foods, packaged foods, and even soy sauce. For safety sake we avoid whole soy. We also eat other legumes without issue. It's my opinion, much like the studies being done at Duke, that eating these foods he is not allergic to and even the soy in OUR case will help him to outgrow some of his allergies.

Our allergist told us that soy may be a false positive and only showing up due to the peanut allergy.

So as you can see, the allergy world is not cut and dry.

For safety sake, you could get skin prick and rast tests done on other tree nuts and see what the results are. But I would keep in mind that there is a high false positive rate and so testing and history of reaction should be taken into consideration. You can always discuss a food challenge with your allergist just to ease your mind and be safe.

FYI-pediatricians are still recommending waiting until after the age of three to introduce peanuts and I believe nuts as well in those with allergy tendencies. Again, I'd discuss with your allergist.

Hope that helps!
Ruth

__________________

Ruth LovettSmith
Founder of http://www.bestallergysites.com/
Your Food Allergy and Gluten Free Guide, and the largest Internet directory of allergy related companies, sites, and blogs.

Disclaimer: I'm a food allergy advocate and mom of a food allergic child. I am NOT an allergist. My comments are based on my research and experiences. Please speak to your doctor regarding medical concerns.

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