Food allergies: Get to know the top common triggers

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Are your guests allergic to any of these?

The most important question to ask when you invite guests over for food is to ask if they have any food allergies. Because if they are, then serving them allergenic food could trigger a really bad reaction and dinner would end on a sour note. So as the host, it would be good practice to know some of the most common food allergy triggers, plus the not so common ones.

Food allergies should never be taken lightly because we can never predict how severe the reactions may be. According to WebMD, below are eight foods that have a track record of causing 90% of most food allergy reactions.

Food allergy triggers

1. Milk

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This is one of the most common food allergy triggers, especially among your young guests. Being lactose intolerant is not the same thing. When you have a milk allergy, your body thinks it is something foreign and would attack by releasing histamines. Symptoms could include wheezing, vomiting and diarrhoea.

2. Eggs

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Another common food trigger, most people who are allergic to eggs are usually allergic to the whites and not the yolk. But just to be safe, it is best to avoid both completely.

3. Peanuts

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Being allergic to peanuts is not the same as being allergic to tree nuts. A mild reaction would involve stomach pain, itchiness and non-life threatening reactions. However, severe peanut allergy reactions have known to cause cardiac arrest and even anaphylaxis.

4. Tree nuts, like walnuts, almonds, pine nuts, brazil nuts, and pecans

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Just like the peanut, tree nuts are one of the food allergy triggers that is most often linked to anaphylaxis. It should never be taken lightly because the symptoms are fast and could cost someone their life.

5. Soy

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This is a super common ingredient used in Asian cooking. Tempeh, soy sauce and bean paste are all made from soy. Milds symptoms include hives or itching inside or around the mouth.

6. Wheat and other grains with gluten, including barley, rye, and oats

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The hardest food allergy triggers to avoid is wheat as there's is wheat in almost everything. Biscuits, noodles, pasta, cakes, oh the list is endless. And because wheat is a type of grain, you will also need to check if they allergic to other types of grains like barley, rye and oats. Check out some of these substitutions for baking!

7. Fish

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Fish food allergy triggers are more commonly found in adults. Sadly, when you're allergic to fish, you will be told to avoid them completely. If you have guests over you might want to scrap fish completely even if it is a favourite of another guest. Cross-contamination can happen when using the same kitchen utensils.

8. Shellfish

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Another common allergy in adults is shellfish, and it has been known to cause severe reactions like anaphylaxis which can happen within seconds of being in contact. It can be fatal and needs to be treated immediately.

Not so common food allergy triggers

There are also the not so common food allergies which are often overlooked like:

  • red meat
  • sesame seeds
  • avocados
  • corn
  • mango
  • gelatin
  • spices

So the next time you have anyone come over for dinner, do make a point to ask if they or their children are allergic to anything. The same applies when serving anyone food or snacks because even one small mistake could endanger their lives.