What happens if you keep eating food you’re allergic to? If you keep eating food you’re allergic to, your immune system will probably continue to produce an abnormal response to it. Over time, the frequency and severity of your allergic reaction may increase. Buckle up, and let’s learn more.
Continuing to eat foods that you have an allergy to may also make you more sensitive to other allergens, which opens the door to you developing new food allergies.
If you consume a small amount of food that triggers your allergic reaction, you may experience mild symptoms, such as itchiness, hives, or stomach upset.
However, if you consume a large amount of food, you may experience a severe allergic reaction, such as anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention.
Can my food allergies get better with exposure?
Food allergies can get better with exposure, but this is not always the case. In some cases, repeated exposure to a food allergen can lead to an increase in the severity of the allergic reaction.
However, in other cases, repeated exposure to a small amount of the allergen can lead to desensitization, where the body gradually becomes less reactive to the allergen over time.
This process is called oral immunotherapy and involves gradually increasing doses of the allergen under medical supervision. It is important to note that immunotherapy should only be done under the guidance of a qualified healthcare professional and should not be attempted at home.
Antihistamines for Food Allergies
There have been studies regarding antihistamines and their effect on food allergies. The studies have concluded that you may get some relief by taking allergy medications.
There are so many different antihistamines out on the market, that you need to find the best antihistamine for food allergies that fits your specific needs.
What about allergy shots?
Allergy shots or immunotherapy for food allergies is not yet an approved treatment method, but there is hope! There are a few clinical trials that are trying to develop an effective allergy shot treatment for food allergies.
What is a food allergy?
A food allergy occurs when your immune system mistakenly identifies food as harmful and produces an abnormal response to it. Your immune system is the “bodyguard” and it believes that something in the food is a threat. The bodyguard sounds the alarm (even though the food is not a threat), which gets the immune system all worked up.
Symptoms of a Food Allergy
The symptoms and severity of a food allergy vary from person to person, some symptoms of a food allergy may include:
- Abdominal pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, and throat
How to Avoid Food Allergies
The best way to avoid food allergies is to identify the offending food and stoping eating food you’re allergic to. Read food labels carefully, and avoid eating foods that contain that ingredient.
Be cautious when eating out or at social events and ask about the ingredients in the food you’re eating. Always carry an epinephrine auto-injector if you have a history of severe allergic reactions.
Watch out for cross-contamination. Cross-contamination occurs when allergens from one food come into contact with another food. For example, if a deep fryer is used to cook both chicken tenders and shrimp, there is a risk of cross-contamination for individuals with a shellfish allergy.
What to Do If You Have an Allergic Reaction
If you have an allergic reaction, the first step is to remove the offending food and any remaining food from your mouth. If you have a mild reaction, such as hives or itching, call a medical professional right away. If you have a severe reaction, such as anaphylaxis, you need to seek immediate medical attention.
If you keep eating food you’re allergic to, your immune system will likely continue to produce an allergic response. This can result in an increase in the frequency and severity of your allergic reaction, making you more prone to developing new allergies. The best way to avoid food allergies is to identify the offending food and avoid it.