There are many different food allergies that affect the people all around the globe. Some of these are milk, soy, fish, and shellfish. However, the most common type of food allergy prevalent is Peanut Allergy. There is a fundamental difference between tree nuts (cashew, almonds) and peanuts. The tree nuts as the name suggest grow on trees whereas peanuts grow underground which make it a legume. Other examples of legumes are lentils, peas that possess a similar characteristic. Peanuts allergy can be caused by a very small amount of peanut and that too not necessarily involving consumption. It can also be triggered if the peanut comes in contact with the eyes, skin or mouth thereby generating a potential life threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. If a person is suffering from this disease he or she is required to keep an epinephrine auto injector with themselves at all times to prevent any sudden reaction. The prevention not only involves avoiding peanuts but also any type of product associated with peanuts like peanut oil and sometimes it even advised to avoid tree nuts since during their processing they often come in contact with peanuts thus possess the harmful content.
According to the study, ‘Peanut Allergy: Epidemiology forecast to 2027’, peanut allergies are the most common in food type of allergy that affects primarily children under the age of 3. In the recent years the cases of peanut allergies has grown at a very fast pace thus attracting global attention. The overall food allergies have the tendency to affect girl however peanut allergies specifically affect more number of boys. In some cases the children can grow out of their allergies however no specific pattern has yet been identified as to this happening. Research also suggests that kids suffering from peanut allergies to have a better quality of life as compared to kids suffering from peanuts.
Peanut allergies are gaining much attention from all around the world with companies trying their best to prevent any consumer from a potential threat. For instance Southwest Airlines, a major United States airline headquartered in Dallas recently banned a decade long tradition of serving peanuts as a snack in its flight menu amid rising concerns. New clinical trials in kids conducted recently suggest that a treatment can be come up with that develops some level of resistance to peanut allergies. Scientists have been already able to come up with a cure that treats these kinds of allergies via oral immunotherapy. In this methodology, the patient has to eat tiny amount of peanut allergen until the immune system is desensitized. However, this treatment has not revealed any long lasting results and the allergy start to propagate as soon as the therapy stops. Researchers also tried to pair the peanuts with a probiotic agent like Lactobacillus rhamnosus (good bacteria present in yoghurt) to push the immune system in a positive direction and prevents it from treating peanuts as an enemy. This treatment developed positive results however it is still early to tag this technology as a cure.
In the last three decades, the number of people affected by peanut allergies has tripled worldwide which has brought this allergy to global attention. Many clinical trials all around the globe especially in United States and Australia are being conducted to cure this disease.
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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications