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Understanding Food Allergy Statistics

Understanding Food Allergy Statistics

Food allergies are incredibly common in the United States, with 32 million people living with at least one food allergy. Of these, it is estimated that 26 million are adults, while the remaining 6 million are children. Last year, these numbers were approximately half these figures, indicating a skyrocket in food allergies in the population. 

As the number of food allergy cases increase, it is important to remain educated on food allergy statistics to help keep you and your child safe. 

Food Allergy Facts

Did you know that 8 foods are responsible for approximately 90% of all food allergies in the U.S.? These foods are:

  • Peanuts
  • Tree nuts
  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Wheat
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Soy

While these are the most common, there are over 170 foods that can cause allergic reactions. Generally speaking, people with allergies to one of the above foods typically have allergies to other foods as well. 

Some allergies persist throughout one’s entire life, such as allergies to peanuts, tree nuts and shellfish. However, it is not uncommon for children to outgrow allergies to milk, eggs, wheat and soy. While some children may outgrow their allergies, many individuals may acquire allergies in adulthood. For example, some adults may go their entire lives eating shellfish with no reaction but may suddenly flare up one day. New studies indicate that 15% of food allergies are first diagnosed in adulthood. 

Living With Food Allergies

Severe food allergies can be life-threatening, with 200,000 people in the U.S. requiring medical attention for food allergies every year. However, just living with food allergies can be costly and affect one’s quality of life. Caring for children with food allergies costs U.S. families an estimated $25 billion annually for testing and treatments. 

Adults with allergies or adults who have children with allergies may avoid restaurants and social situations to prevent triggering a reaction. Some parents even report not allowing their children to sleepovers or camps due to allergy risks. 

Staying Safe From Food Allergies

Food allergies don’t have to make you live in fear. New advancements have made food allergy prevention, testing and treatment more effective and accessible than ever. At Northeast Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, we have the tests and therapies you need to monitor and treat yours or your child’s food allergies. 

Schedule your appointment to learn more about our food allergy treatment options! 


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