Increases in Food Allergies Make for a Sad Day
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…we love technology, and we love food. And when we heard that food allergies in children have been on the rise, well, that made us very sad. Food is amazing! And with so many amazing things to be tried and enjoyed, it’s not a good news day when you learn that kids all over the place are struggling not only to enjoy basic foods, but to deal with their allergies as well.
CNBC recently brought the topic to light in an informative article, and we wanted to re-iterate some of the key points that might make the topic a little easier to swallow. If you or someone you know has a child with food allergies, then this might be an ideal read for them.
The topic of allergies has been long-debated, but it’s recently hit top story again because of spiking prices for the EpiPen. The EpiPen (also known as the Epinephrine Autoinjector) is a device that people with allergic reactions can use, in order to treat their anaphylaxis.
The spike in price has parents on the defense, since many children live with life-threatening allergies on a daily basis. For those who cannot afford the updated price of the EpiPen, this can ultimately spell disaster in the case that they need medical assistance from a reaction.
According to the article, between the year 1997 and 2011, the number of children living with food allergies has increased by 50%. For a better picture of where we are today, there are at least 2 students in every classroom with a food allergy.
What’s Going On?
Some of the most common food allergies include allergies to fish, shellfish, soy, wheat, nuts, eggs and milk. There are many who are trying to get to the bottom of this growing issue, with a few theories being offered as to why so many children now experience food allergies.
One suggestion is known as the “hygiene hypothesis”, which is based on the notion that more children are protected from germs and are more prone to excessive cleaning in their childhood. The lack of germs being presented to the body causes the body to become confused when regular objects enter, such as food products.
Another suggestion points to climate change, suggesting that the rise in temperatures over the last few decades means longer growing times, and increased pollen and allergens in the air. The result is increased respiratory allergens, which can often leave sufferers with extremely itchy eyes, difficulty breathing, headaches, sneezing and more.
Personally, I’ve never had to deal with food allergies, but the changes that fellow friends and family have been going through is noticeable and worrisome. If there’s anything we can hope for, it’s that we continue to fight climate change, and that the price of the EpiPen comes to a halt so that more children can get the tools they need to survive through each day with food allergies.
What are your thoughts on this issue?