What is Food Allergy?

Why does food allergy occur?  Our immune system, when working well, helps us fight infections (by killing germs such as viruses and bacteria).  When our immune system mistakenly recognizes and attacks a food protein, this is when food allergy happens.  Food allergies, unlike food intolerances, are what doctors call “IgE-mediated”.  IgE is a type of antibody that can target a specific food protein when the person is allergic to a food, and cause the release of histamine that other chemicals that result in the symptoms of an allergic reaction.  Symptoms of an allergic reaction to a food can occur within minutes to a few hours after ingesting the culprit food.  Symptoms may include but are not limited to the following: swelling of face, tongue, lips, or throat, wheezing or shortness of breath, hives or rash on the skin, abdominal pain, vomiting, or cardiovascular issues like low blood pressure.  It is important to recognize the symptoms of an allergic reaction and treat immediately.  It is very important to go over with your allergist exactly what you are allergic to, and when to use self-injectable epinephrine and antihistamines.  Studies have shown that treating with epinephrine sooner rather than later results in better outcomes for patients.

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. SugarDr. 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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