Allergy, what’s that??

The latest news that came out from research done at the University of South Carolina says that ‘Young children’s antibiotic exposure associated with higher food allergy risk’. The summary of the report says, “Antibiotic treatment within the first year of life may wipe out more than an unwanted infection: exposure to the drugs is associated with an increase in food allergy diagnosis, new research suggests.


Today, the number of children with allergies has increased as compared to before. There are so many instances when people say, how come when we were kids there were fewer allergies compared to now. When we were growing up, we had never heard of peanut allergies. Today it is very common. Why is this?


In 2014, a study conducted by John Hopkins Children’s Centre said that that children in their first year who are exposed to dirt and germs may have lower risk of getting allergies and asthma. Click here to read more about it. The report was published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. It says that infants exposed to different allergens and household bacteria are less likely to suffer from asthma and allergies. It said that early exposure may make the child more immune and train the child’s immune system to respond to these allergens. The study was conducted on 467 new borns. Children free of wheezing and allergy at age 3 were children who were exposed to the allergens. It said that wheezing was three times more common among children who were not exposed to these allergens.

I wish I knew before! My son had asthma from the time he was 3 months. Then why do we ‘protect’ our kids from all these allergens and bacteria? Why do we use so much of hand sanitizers? I am one of those who use them extensively.

As I was writing  this post,  I saw an article in Scientific American titled – US bans common chemicals in hand santitizers. It stated: “Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” said Janet Woodcock, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) in a statement. “In fact, some data suggests that antibacterial ingredients may do more harm than good over the long-term.”

In another study, it says food allergy has increased due to pesticides in water. According to an issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, the scientific journal of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), pesticides and tap water could be partially to blame.

10,348 people took part in this study. Dichlorophenols was found in 2,548 urine samples, that is 25% of the total people. It found around 400 people had a food allergy (around 3%) and around 1000 people (around 10%) had environmental allergies. 3% does not seem much but for those 3% of people who have mild to deadly food allergies it is surely more than an inconvenience!



2 thoughts on “Allergy, what’s that??

  1. I always wondered about the peanut allergies Preethi. Since it seems more prevalent in the USA, I wonder if it is a certain species of groundnuts that causes severe reactions.
    As I child if we broke into hives after consuming a food, parents would blame it on ‘pitta’ and treat it as indigestion! Never heard of a fatal allergy in those days. Perhaps things happened but one never really understood the science or reasons behind it.


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