Is it possible to develop food allergies later on in life?

This is a common question that people ask, and the answer depends on the person as well as the food.  In general, most food allergies start in infancy and childhood.  For milk, egg, and peanut allergy, these food allergies are often recognized when the person is young, sometimes with the first ingestion of the culprit food.  However, food allergies can also develop later in a person’s life.  There is no clear reason why, but some people develop an allergy to a food they could once eat with no issues.  Specifically, with shellfish, it was shown in one study in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology that more than half of shellfish allergies develop in adulthood.  So if an adult eats shrimp and within minutes to up to 2 hours develop signs of an allergic reaction, there is a possibility that a shellfish allergy has developed.  It is very important at this point to see a board certified allergist for further testing and management!


By Faith Huang, M.D.

Allergy & Asthma Associates of Southern California provides relief from allergies, asthma, sinus problems, chronic cough and other related conditions. Dr. William E. Berger, Dr. Warner W. Carr, Dr. Mark S. Sugar, Dr. Christina D. Schwindt and Dr. Faith R. Huang together with their staff specialize in allergy and immunology in Southern California.

If you or your child is suffering from a food allergy or any other kind of allergy, please call us at (949) 364-2900 to schedule your appointment today. You can also use our online Request an Appointment form to schedule a future appointment.

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