At least once in our lives, we’ve encountered a friend, classmate, or family member who has an allergy to something. That person would almost completely avoid any dish or drink that contains the food or ingredient they are allergic to, and they constantly ask what the meal contains before ordering their food.
But did you know that even if you have no known allergies, you can still have allergic reactions to some food? That’s right— even if you’re already way past childhood and adolescence, you can still develop allergies as an adult!
You might have seen red spots on certain parts of your body, had itchy or watery eyes, or experienced a runny nose. These are all common signs of allergies that you may just have taken as nothing! (Read: WATCH: Dr. Dex Macalintal Recommends Food Against COVID-19)
While most allergic reactions are mild, it is best to informed as there are some people who have moderate to severe reactions to food. So here are some common food allergens you should watch out for. (Note: If you do notice any reactions to these food, consult an allergy or immunology specialist about it.)
Common Food Allergens: Milk
Milk allergy is a whole other thing from lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is when the body doesn’t have enough lactase, which is used to break down the lactose in milk and other dairy products. On the other hand, a milk allergy is to the protein in milk.
Lactose intolerant individuals will experience diarrhea, stomach cramps and/or rumbling, and feel gassy. But for those allergic to milk, drinking milk would mean hives (itchy, red spots on the skin), itching or swelling of the around lips or mouth, and sometimes coughing. (Read: 3 Food Items You Can Donate to Your Local Community Pantry)
Common food with milk are baked goods, chocolates, yogurt, cheese, ice cream
Common Food Allergens: Eggs
Eggs are a breakfast fave in many countries, including here in the Philippines. Our silog— tapsilog, longsilog, bangsilog— meals are a staple morning food may it be at home, at work, or even during vacation. And by eating this regularly, we might think that don’t have any allergies to it. (Read: These Suppliers Deliver Farm-Fresh Eggs in the Metro!)
However, that is incorrect— allergic reactions don’t necessarily mean having difficulty breathing or wheezing; it can just be mild manifestations. Common egg allergy manifestations are nasal congestion or runny nose, stomach cramps, nausea, and hives.
Food that commonly have eggs in it are breaded dishes, pancakes, crepes, and waffles, and mayonnaise.
Common Food Allergens: Fish
Just like for shellfish, people could also have allergies and allergic reactions towards fish like salmon and tuna, among others. According to data, allergic reactions toward finned fish account for a significant number of serious allergic reactions.
“Roughly half of reactions require urgent medical evaluation. Death has also been reported from reactions to finned fish,” said foodallergyawareness.org. This is why those who have known fish allergies should always read labels and carry epinephrine.
Fish allergy symptoms can vary— cramps and stomach pain, rashes or itchy skin, tightening and tingling of the throat, and swelling of the lips are common allergic reactions to fish.