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Peanut Allergy: Best Practices for Prevention and Treatment

TeamAckoApr 17, 2024

Peanut is a common Indian snack loved by all. Recently peanut butter has gained popularity and has become a delectable spread that many of us love. However many schools have implemented a no-nut policy so that parents do not pack peanuts or peanut butter for their kids' lunch. 

This is because, even though peanuts are a delicious snack to consume, it is highly allergic and can cause fatal issues to people with such allergies. Peanut is often linked to anaphylaxis, a sudden, potentially fatal illness that needs to be treated right away.

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The number of reported cases of peanut allergy in children and awareness of the condition has increased recently. According to a study, the prevalence of childhood peanut allergies has risen dramatically in the 21st century. In this blog, we will talk about peanut allergy and how you can treat it.



What Exactly Causes a Peanut Allergy?

There is compelling evidence that peanut allergies may be mostly influenced by genetic factors. Studies have proven that 20% of individuals with peanut allergies had specific genes that lead to spread of the allergy in a person’s body.

However, the negative reaction of one’s immune system to the proteins in peanuts is the underlying cause of peanut allergies. An immunological reaction is triggered when a person who has a peanut allergy eats or comes into contact with peanuts, because their immune system views the proteins as dangerous intruders. Histamine is one of the substances released as a result of this reaction, which causes allergy symptoms.

What Are The Common Signs And Symptoms of Peanut Allergy? 

Anaphylaxis is the most severe allergic reaction to peanuts. It is a potentially fatal and a whole-body reaction to the allergen. Breathing difficulties, throat swelling, a sharp drop in blood pressure, pale complexion or blue lips, fainting, and dizziness are some possible symptoms. For treating anaphylaxis, adrenaline, or epinephrine, should be injected automatically into the affected area as soon as possible.

How to Identify a Peanut Allergy? 

A peanut allergy might be difficult to diagnose initially. It is often observed that people do not always tend to show the same symptom of the allergy, which makes it quite difficult for an inexperienced person to identify it as an allergic reaction.

Make sure to schedule a visit with an allergist if you suspect an allergic reaction after consuming peanuts. One tip, before the appointment, begin a food journal and record any reactions. 

Moreover, to determine whether you have an allergy to peanuts or any other substance, an allergist might suggest a skin test or blood test. An oral food challenge could also be suggested by the allergist. In an allergist's chamber, you will be given large quantities of peanuts or products derived from peanuts throughout this test to confirm whether the diagnosis is correct. 

How to Treat a Peanut Allergy? 

Although avoiding exposure is the usual course of treatment for peanut allergies, experts are still investigating various treatments for this, such as an oral immunotherapy.

Oral immunotherapy, sometimes referred to as desensitisation, entails gradually introducing higher doses of peanut-containing food to children who are allergic to peanuts or who are at risk of developing such allergies. Peanut allergy cannot be entirely cured with oral immunotherapy. Instead, the goal of this kind of treatment is to lessen the possibility of serious reactions, such as anaphylaxis, when exposed to peanuts. 

How to Avoid Peanut Allergies? 

If you suspect of having peanut allergies, you can implement certain measures as discussed below to avoid it.

Avoid peanut allergy in infants

Women were urged not to cut out peanuts from their diet during pregnancy or lactation by an expert panel on the diagnosis and management of food allergies, funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Trusted Source. This is because they discovered no link between a mother's diet and her child's risk of becoming allergic to peanuts. 

Many experts have said recently that parents should introduce their children to peanuts when they start eating other solid foods. But it also said that parents shouldn't give their infants peanuts for the first six months of their lives. 

Once the babies are seen consuming peanut-containing foods safely, regular exposure is the key to allergy prevention. However, those with a history of eczema or egg allergy should go through a test before being given peanut-containing foods. 

Avoid Peanuts While Eating 

Individuals who have a peanut allergy should watch what they consume carefully to reduce their risk of anaphylactic shock. Candies, cereals, and baked goods including pies, cakes, and cookies can include peanuts or peanut-derived ingredients. Ask the waiter about ingredients if you're dining out; for instance, peanut butter might be a component of a marinade or used as sauce. 

Eat with additional caution if you're eating Asian, Mexican, or other cuisines where peanuts are frequently used. Since peanuts are a popular topping, even ice cream shops could be a source of unintentional exposure. 

Peanuts may contaminate foods throughout the manufacturing or food preparation process even if they are not an ingredient in the food. Therefore, items with warning labels like "may contain peanuts" or "made in a factory that uses nut ingredients" should be avoided by anyone who has a peanut allergy. 

Keep in mind that using those cautionary labels is entirely optional. Talking to your allergist about the potential dangers of ingesting items with voluntary labelling may be a wise decision.

Do Not Cook Using Anything with Peanuts

When cooking from scratch, it's simple to change recipes to exclude peanut ingredients and include non-allergen ingredients instead, like toasted oats, raisins, or seeds. The majority of those who are intolerant to peanuts or peanut butter can still enjoy other nut or seed butter. 

Remember that these goods might be produced in a facility that handles peanuts, so be sure to carefully read the label and get in touch with the producer if you have any queries.

Which Foods to Stay Away From If Someone is Allergic to Peanuts? 

Adults who are allergic to peanuts need to exercise caution to prevent accidental contact with peanuts or meals containing peanuts. Additionally, use caution while consuming any foods that include tree nuts, such as cashews, walnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, and pecans. Individuals who have peanut allergies may also have tree nut allergies.

About 35% of American toddlers with peanut allergies go on to acquire tree nut allergies, according to Kids with Food Allergies (KFA). Additionally, be cautious of cross-contamination and cross-contact if you have a serious allergy to peanuts. Eat at restaurants with caution and always read the labels on packaged items.

Many everyday foods, such as the following, may contain concealed peanuts:

  • African, Asian, and Mexican foods

  • Other "nut" butter, such as those made from soy nuts or sunflower seeds

  • Salad dressings

  • Sweets, such as candy, cookies, and ice cream 

Final Words 

Peanut allergy is very common in places like the USA, UK, Australia, UK etc. It is among the deadliest food allergies, so it is no joke. If you feel like you have a peanut allergy avoid exposure to peanuts and always check the ingredients before eating a new preparation or snack. Hopefully, we have explained how to avoid and prevent this allergy in this blog. So even if you have a mild reaction, consult a doctor. 

Moreover, buy health insurance so that it can cover sudden health-related expenses such as diagnostic tests, treatments, etc. A sudden health emergency can cost a lot, so having insurance is always the smartest idea. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some commonly asked questions related to peanut allergies.


What is the initial course of treatment for allergies to peanuts?

The first line of treatment for a severe reaction, such as anaphylaxis, is epinephrine. As a result, a person who is allergic to peanuts should always have an injectable dose on hand. Find out more about injectable epinephrine.

How should peanut allergies be treated?

The best way to treat a peanut allergy is oral immunotherapy. It gradually introduces peanuts to people with a peanut allergy, reducing the likelihood that their immune system will respond if they inadvertently consume a peanut product. 

Are peanut allergies curable naturally?

Food allergies cannot be cured, but they can be controlled with care and avoidance. While minor reactions to food allergies can usually be managed at home, severe reactions can be life-threatening and necessitate emergency medical intervention. 

Does a peanut allergy run in the family?

Siblings of individuals with peanut allergies are more likely to have the allergy than their parents or the general public. Its ostensibly rising frequency might be due to an overall rise in atopy, which is more frequently inherited from the mother. 

Can someone allergic to peanuts eat almonds?

Furthermore, despite testing suggesting that they would be troublesome, almost all of the individuals with an allergy to peanuts—which are technically legumes—were able to comfortably eat tree nuts including Brazil nuts, walnuts, and almonds. 

Disclaimer: The content on this page is generic and shared only for informational and explanatory purposes. Please consult a doctor before making any health-related decisions.


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