Reported childhood peanut allergies triple over past decade

By Caroline Scott-Thomas

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Allergy Food allergy

The reported rate of peanut allergy in children more than tripled from 1997 to 2008, according to survey results published in the latest issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

Researchers from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine conducted telephone interviews with 5,300 households during 2008, representing 13,534 individuals. They found that 1.4 percent of children were reported to have peanut allergies, compared to 0.4 percent in 1997. And 2.4 percent of children were reported to have peanut and/or tree nut allergies in 2008, compared to 0.6 percent in 1997.

Lead researcher and professor of pediatrics at the school Dr. Scott Sicherer said:

“These results show that there is an alarming increase in peanut allergies, consistent with a general, although less dramatic, rise in food allergies among children in studies reported by the CDC. The data underscore the need for more study of these dangerous allergies.”

The researchers cautioned that the study has limitations due to its self-reported nature, as it could not be determined how many children had ‘true’ allergies. They also said that because it was a telephone survey, it may under-represent lower-income households that may not have a telephone.

However, the researchers noted that their findings were consistent with those from other countries that used different methods, including Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom.

Among adults, the reported prevalence of nut allergies remained unchanged at 1.3 percent.

Dr. Sicherer said: “Our research shows that more than three million Americans report peanut and/or tree nut allergies, representing a significant health burden. The data also emphasize the importance of developing better prevention and treatment strategies.”

The researchers said there were several theories for the rise in allergy rates among children, including the idea that our home environments have become cleaner, leading to weaker immune systems as we are exposed to fewer germs.

Related topics Markets Ingredients

Related news

Related products

show more

Dairy proteins now available from Univar Solutions

Dairy proteins now available from Univar Solutions

Content provided by Univar Solutions | 20-Sep-2023 | White Paper

Foodology by Univar Solutions proudly partners with Leprino Nutrition as their North American distributor of nutritional ingredients and dairy products.

Clean Label Ingredients for Shelf-Life Extension

Clean Label Ingredients for Shelf-Life Extension

Content provided by Lesaffre | 19-Sep-2023 | White Paper

Product waste skyrockets without anti-staling agents and mold inhibitors. But consumers are scrutinizing labels more than ever before. How can you have...

Sustainability Claims Impact on Consumer Purchases

Sustainability Claims Impact on Consumer Purchases

Content provided by ADM | 07-Sep-2023 | Insight Guide

Discover what consumers say about sustainability claims versus what they do in the grocery aisle. Find out in this can’t-miss proprietary study from ADM:...

Cost-effective & efficient: Angel Prebake Solution

Cost-effective & efficient: Angel Prebake Solution

Content provided by Angel Yeast – Yeast and Baking Ingredients | 31-Jul-2023 | White Paper

After years of systematic research and practical application in the production process and essential ingredients for frozen dough, Angel's pre-bake...

Related suppliers

Follow us


View more