What are the most common food allergies in the Washington DC area? Before we address this question, let’s take a second to address what a food allergy is, and why food allergies are important to deal with the right way.
A food allergy is a medical condition in which the body’s immune system responds negatively to the presence (or consumption) of certain foods; a response which we view as an allergic reaction.
The allergic response may be mild to moderate, or severe.
A severe systemic allergic reaction is often referred to as Anaphylaxis.
To be considered as coming from a true food allergy, a reaction has to be immune-system related (igE-mediated), has to be specific and reproducible, and occurs at the time a person eats a particular food, or soon after.
Food sensitivity or food intolerances (like Gluten intolerance – a.k.a. “Gluten allergy”) are not actually food allergies.
Food allergic people should not be exposed to allergy-causing foods outside the context of an allergist-supervised oral food challenge because even the tiniest amount of such foods could cause signs or symptoms of an allergic reaction.
Found To Cause Serious Allergic Reactions
While the list of foods allergies encountered in the U.S. is a long one, there are 8 common food allergens listed by the CDC and other authorities as responsible for most serious allergic reactions.
And if the statistics hold true for food allergies her in Montgomery County, Maryland and the Washington D.C. area as well, these are most likely to be the same 8 most food allergies for our area. They are:
- Peanut Allergy
- Tree nut allergy
- Milk / Dairy Allergy
- Egg Allergy
- Wheat Allergy
- Soy Allergy
- Fish Allergy
- Shellfish Allergy
Combined these food allergens above account for 90% of allergic reactions. If those statistics hold, these are likely to be the 8 most common Montgomery County, Maryland food allergies as well.
If you suspect that you or someone under your care (children or seniors) have a food allergy, here are some things you should consider as you select a clinic for your food allergy clinical visit, food allergy testing (challenges) and food allergy management counseling.
- Are the Washington D.C. area doctors you’re considering board-certified allergists?
- Does your preliminary research (via their allergy clinic website, allergy blog, or a phone call) give you an impression that you will be given the time, space and empathy needed to ask all your questions and address your concerns? (Including those you think might be “stupid questions”?)
- Do the bios of their allergy doctors give you the impression that you can trust their expertise and their empathy?
- Do their allergy clinic reviews show that they encourage patients to “ask everything” related to their allergy concerns or leave you worried about the quality of your care?
- Is their location convenient for your needs (along with parking and access)?
These are just a few of the questions and concerns we try to address here at Alpha Allergy & Asthma Associates in Silver Spring (White Oak / Fairland) Maryland.
Our board certified doctors and allergists go beyond the expertise of their background to see to it that guests and patients experience appropriate empathy and are empowered through education to make optimal decisions for their allergy wellness.
If you’d like to set an allergist appointment today, or if you wish to request a return phone call, you may do so here.
Call 301-879 – 7700 or visit us at AlphaAllergy.com to learn more.