Allergy Awareness

The information in this blog is the result of my own research into allergies.Some information is anecdotal but may be of use to other people trying to understand why it is that their body over-reacts to everyday substances.There will also be recipes added on a regular basis as I come up with alternatives to our favourite foods that we can't do without - Chocolate cake, pizza, nothing healthy! ;-)

Asthma treatment: Olympic athlete hopeful Hannah Lupton improves after vocal training


Hannah Lupton of Preston, whose sporting career was thrown into jeopardy after she was diagnosed with asthma has got her breath back thanks to pioneering treatment.

Asthma treatment: Olympic athlete hopeful Hannah Lupton improves after vocal training
Posted by at Tuesday, March 01, 2011 1:09 PM

Asthma vaccine: Farmyard bacteria could stop children developing condition


Scientists believe the discovery could prevent 1.1million children in the UK from getting the condition.

Asthma vaccine: Farmyard bacteria could stop children developing condition
Posted by at Monday, February 28, 2011 10:12 PM

Breakthrough in the battle to conquer coeliac disease


Coeliac disease, the intolerance to gluten, has blighted the lives of millions of people. Now scientists have cracked the mystery as to how it happens.

Breakthrough in the battle to conquer coeliac disease

A jab to beat hay fever: 'Holy grail' of vaccines could even prevent asthma and eczema


The one-size-fits-all injection could even ward off peanut allergies. But the news will be particularly welcomed by Britain’s 15million hay fever sufferers.

A jab to beat hay fever: 'Holy grail' of vaccines could even prevent asthma and eczema

Allergies 'slash risk of cancer': They help to boost immune system, say experts


Scientists believe that adverse reactions stimulate the immune system, helping to ward off other potentially fatal conditions.

Allergies 'slash risk of cancer': They help to boost immune system, say experts

Common pesticides linked to ADHD in children


Children exposed to chemicals used on crops and in household products could have a higher risk of attention-deficit disorder, according to U.S research.

Common pesticides linked to ADHD in children

Food "superallergies": The First Italian Study Proves That They Can Be Cured With The Incriminated Allergen

By setting an alimentary desensitization protocol against milk and egg proteins, the medical team of the Pediatric Clinic of the University of Trieste, located at the Institute of Child Health Burlo Garofolo, has demonstrated the possibility to reeducate the organism of "superallergic" children to accept incriminated foods without suffering from severe, and occasionally lethal reactions such as anaphylaxis or edema of the glottidis.

Read the full article here - 

Posted by at Saturday, March 06, 2010 10:24 AM

Overcoming Allergic Reactions To Soy

If you're allergic to soy, help is on the way. Two University of Illinois studies show that fermenting soy dramatically reduces its potential allergenicity and also increases the number of essential amino acids in soy products, making them a healthy and a safe choice for consumers. ...

Read the full article at

Posted by at Saturday, March 06, 2010 10:17 AM

Citric Acid Allergy


This is an interesting one. From the information I have been able to gather Citric Acid is commonly used as an acidity regulator. It can be produced either naturally from citrus fruit or it can be a derivative of wheat starch.

At the moment I have not been able to find any tinned tomatoes in the supermarket that do not contain Citric Acid. Most soft drinks also contain Citric Acid. In fact most products in the supermarket seem to contain Citric Acid.

Personally, Citric Acid (and citrus fruit) triggers my asthma, so I avoid it. The only tinned tomato product to date that I have found that does not use Citric Acid is a catering sized tin of "pizza base topping" which is made from 100% tomatoes (nothing else - woo hoo!)

As I react to both Citrus fruit and wheat I do not know which derivative I react to. What I do know is that Citric Acid is also known as Acidity Regulator E330.

To confuse matters further the health guide on Mutual Benefit Marketing has this to say

Food acid, naturally derived from citrus fruit, although commercial synthesis is by fermentation of molasses. It is used in food as an antioxidant as well as enhancing the effect of other antioxidants, and also as an acidity regulator. Present in virtually all plants, it was first isolated in 1784 from lemon juice, by the Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele, and has been used as a food additive for over 100 years. Used in biscuits, canned fish, cheese and processed cheese products, infant formulas, cake and soup mixes, rye bread, soft drinks, fermented meat products. Damages tooth enamel. Most citric acid is produced from corn, manufacturers do not always take out the protein which can be hydrolysed and create MSG (621) causing reactions in MSG-sensitive people.

On my previous blog there were some interesting comments about this post left by some of the readers. I have taken the liberty of copying them here.

Nick (Visitor)
Monday, 09. Feb, 2009 @ 04:11:48
Citric acid triggers my asthma. It takes more than 2 cups of home made natural orange juice but even one piece of pizza that has citric acid added as preservatives creates problem for me. Today i ate ready to eat dinner. I thought citric acid is ok as preservative. But immediately after 20 minutes of eating dinner i am feeling mild asthmatic.

Kim Z (Visitor)
Tuesday, 14. Jul, 2009 @ 16:45:32
Depending upon my stress levels, I can have a citric acid reaction on a small amount of citric acid it seems. My skins burns from products including citric acid, particularly if I am not completely avoiding it in my food intake. In particular, I get a burning scalp from hair care products. They almost all have some short of fruit extract or something in them that causes me problems. I am wondering if anyone has any suggestions for good shampoo and conditioner that I can use? I read the labels, but I still seem to react. I think citric acid is disguised as other things. ??

Michael (Visitor)
Friday, 17. Jul, 2009 @ 19:37:09
I think you may find that the allergy to artificai citric acid is to the bug/mould they make artificial citric acid with - it is aspergillus niger, traces of which can be left in the artificail citric acid. It is a kind of mould. I am allergic to the tiniest traces of this - getting asthma - but not to natural citric acid. From my understanding it would be difficult to be allergic to natural citric acid as all our bodies contain citric acid - we couldn't live without it. So the citrus fruit allergy you have may be an allergic reation to some other part of the citrus fruit - hence your different reactions.

Posted by at Friday, March 05, 2010 6:00 PM

Oak Smoke Flavouring Contains Phthalic Anhydride.


I bought some relatively harmless sounding Smoked Salmon as a treat for myself not thinking there would be much in that I could react to. The ingredients list was fairly simple: Salmon (97%), Salt, Sugar, Oak Smoke. I've never reacted to any type of fish so I was pretty taken aback when I started to swell around my mouth and face, broke out in welts and started to get breathless.

From investigating around the web I discovered that when Oak Smoke is listed as an ingredient it is because it is an added flavouring. Tests have been completed on aqueous oak smoke and it has been found to contain (amongst other things) Phthalic Anhydride.

Phthalic Anhydride is known to irritate the skin, eyes and upper respiratory system, in fact it's pretty nasty stuff -

From now on I'll be checking to make sure that if I am eating so-called smoked food it has actually been smoked and not just flavoured.

Posted by at Friday, March 05, 2010 1:56 PM

Can A Breastfed Baby Have Allergies?


Quite basically, yes, and they can have intolerances too.

Last time I was pregnant, my allergies/intolerances seemed to reduce in severity. Initially they got worse, then as the pregnancy progressed they improved and I didn't react anywhere near as violently as I had done previously - hence the drop in the blog submissions!

When my baby was 3-months old she had not stopped coughing, wheezing or having snuffly nose since she was born - so I started looking into the possibilty that she may have a dairy allergy. Not to my milk but to the few milk proteins that are passed on to her through my milk. I found out that other allergens which can be passed on through breastmilk are wheat, eggs, citrus and peanuts.

I rarely ate peanuts so it had to be something that I had in my diet every day. My egg allergy was disgnosed at 6 weeks old, so I went wheat, dairy and egg free again, in the hope that it would help clear up my snuffly baby.

An interesting article called "Milk: Does it Really Do a Body Good?" written by Dr Jay Gordon can be read at It is quite informative and discusses the contents of milk, symptoms of intolerances/dairy and reactions of breastfed babies to changes in the diet of their mother.

I still watch what I am eating as once my hormones levelled out after giving birth my allergies/intolerances returned, but at a level which I am more able to tolerate. I like this because it means once a week I cheat and eat something 'naughty', the next day I don't feel great but for the most part it's bearable and I can continue with life quite normally, for me!

Posted by at Friday, March 05, 2010 10:16 AM