With over 1.5 million Americans suffering from peanut allergies, it is unfortunate that you seldom know you are allergic to peanuts or nut products until you have eaten them and have a reaction. However, after the first intolerable reaction, being aware of your peanut allergies can be life-saving knowledge. Despite the severity and prevalence of peanut allergy, researchers say more than 80% of people who die from food-related anaphylaxis or severe allergic reaction had not been properly instructed on how to avoid or manage accidental exposure to food allergens or triggers.
What Happens If You Eat Peanuts and Are Allergic To Them?
As with everything else most of us will respond differently, depending on the seriousness of the peanut allergy. It is the protein in the peanuts that cause the anaphylactic reaction. The time for the symptoms of peanut allergies to appear can be immediate or as long as an hour after eating peanut products.
The nastiest reaction is anaphylactic response, which may cause you to go into shock or could even cause death if not treated immediately. If a person who is highly sensitive to peanuts ingests them, the reaction can be almost immediate. The bronchi in the airways may constrict, making breathing practically impossible. The persons blood pressure may quickly fall to extremely low levels. Severe peanut allergies can also causes dizziness and in many cases unconsciousness or death.
What Is A Peanut Intolerance
An intolerance to peanuts may cause minor symptoms, but an allergic reaction that reacts in a person’s immune system, can cause life-threatening reactions.
Reactions that are non life threatening may involve labored breathing, lips turning blue, nausea, weak pulse, dizziness and even unconsciousness.
Take Precautions If You Suspect You Have Allergies To Peanuts
Peanut products are one of the most often used items in food products in use today. Labeling requirements make it illegal to sell items containing peanuts without being listed on the label. Peanuts are very often found in numerous food items such as ice cream, candy and many meat items. They are sometimes used as a protein additive.
Some laws specify that an insignificant amount of peanut products need not be listed. Be very cautious as even a trace can cause problems for anyone with a severe peanut allergy.
Caution must always be followed if you suspect are know you have peanut allergies. Carefully read the ingredients labels on all products, to assure yourself you do not accidentally ingest the peanut protein.
If you or another starts to show signs of a reaction indicating peanut allergies, medical treatment should be sought immediately. Failure to receive prompt medical attention for a peanut reaction could lead to a life threatening condition.
If you simply kissed someone who recently ate peanuts this could cause a reaction through this type of indirect contact. This is an unintended result of cross-contamination, such as another person handling peanuts and then handling another type of food or food product can also trigger an allergic reaction. Inhaling an aerosol spray such as cooking sprays containing peanut flour can also cause an attack.
New Hope For A Peanut Allergy Vaccine
A hopeful new experimental peanut allergy vaccine may soon provide important protection against potentially life-threatening consequences for those with peanut allergies. Some new research also shows that a common household item might provide immediate help in warding off or even preventing some severe allergic reactions.
Researchers say the recent discovery of the specific proteins in peanuts that are responsible for triggering an allergic reaction has now paved the way for vaccine development. A published study in JACI describes a new technique using E. coli bacteria to deliver a vaccine in the form of a suppository that provided effective protection against peanut allergy for up to three months in mice bred to have peanut allergy.
Since genetically altered E. coli bacteria produce the proteins involved in peanut allergy reaction, researchers used an inactivated form of the bacteria to deliver the vaccine, which contained three different genetically modified forms of allergy-causing peanut protein.
This specific vaccine could be adopted for human use provides some hope that within the next several years we may be able to treat patients with peanut anaphylaxis and actually turn off the reaction so we no longer see symptoms. Human trials of the vaccine have already begun. The vaccine would most likely be given over a series of about three doses using a teaspoon-sized gel suppository and may require yearly booster doses for best protection.
Peanut Allergy Conclusion
There is some hope After all. Remember for now if you have peanut allergies you not have to actually ingest in the peanuts to suffer a reaction. Simply handling them may be enough to trigger an dangerous allergic reaction. Can a peanut allergy be cured like other allergies? No There is no known cure for peanut allergies.
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