A study from Portsmouth University claims that nine out of ten sufferers of food allergies or food intolerance in Britain actually do NOT have a real medical allergy. The researchers “blamed internet searches, self-testing kits and celebrity food fads for the epidemic of make-believe allergies and intolerances. As a result…millions are unnecessarily restricting their diets, starving themselves of their favorite foods, and of key nutrients,” according to an article in the UK’s Daily Mail.
The Centers for Disease Control estimate 12 million Americans have food allergies, with nuts, egg, milk, and gluten being the most common. We have certainly known many who have a real allergy to those ingredients, and it manifests itself in many ways including hives, swelling, and stomach aches. And, as the Food Allergy Initiative points out, in rare cases an allergen can prove to be fatal. A lot of parents are now giving their little ones soy milk instead of cow’s milk, assuming a lactose intolerance is at the source of a gassy tummy, but those kids are then missing out on crucial vitamin D.
Do you or a loved one have a food allergy? Do you believe that some who claim an intolerance or allergy are really just hypochondriacs? Foodfacts.com would like to hear from you.