Allergies come in all shapes and sizes ...
Just like allergy sufferers. And they are on the rise. For many people allergies can range from sniffling and sneezing to skin rashes to gastrointestinal issues. A certain percentage, however, have more than these uncomfortable symptoms to deal with. Anaphylaxis, a serious life-threatening reaction, causes approximately 1,500 deaths a year in the United States alone. Clearly, allergies are nothing to sneeze at!
Articles for Advocacy
Recently the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued revised guidelines, “relaxing” packaged food labeling requirements. They were concerned about possible supply disruptions brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. The result has been confusion, concern and controversy. What do these new guidelines really mean? How do they impact individuals and families with life-threatening food allergies? How can people stay safe and informed? Read what the FDA, consumer groups, and parents have to say.
What the FDA's Relaxed Food Label Rules Mean for People with Allergies
The Agency’s Action Is Alarming Consumers Who Rely on Ingredient Labels to Stay Safe.
By Rachel Rabkin Peachman
July 7th, 2020
To avoid potential food-supply-chain disruptions in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the Food and Drug Administration announced last month that it has temporarily relaxed food labeling guidelines, allowing manufacturers of packaged foods to substitute certain ingredients without changing the labels.
The guidance was meant to head off issues that could arise if manufacturers were to have trouble obtaining ingredients and pertains only to ingredients that are present in foods in relatively small amounts.
When you or a family member have a food allergy, putting together the family grocery list isn’t just about who likes or dislikes certain foods. It’s also about foods that can cause a potentially fatal allergic reaction. Knowing what foods to avoid is essential. A new study from Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) shows how universal labeling could help consumers. Our association strongly endorses food labeling that clearly lists all ingredients, especially any dangerous allergens.
85 Million Americans Avoid Buying Food with Top 9 Allergens
By Lana Bandoim
July 6th, 2020
A new study from Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) reveals that 85 million Americans avoid buying food with the top nine allergens in it because either they have allergies or members of their households have them. This consumer group spends $19 billion per year on specialty food products without allergens, and FARE believes universal labels would make shopping easier.
According to FARE, the top nine food allergens in the United States are milk, eggs, wheat, sesame, tree nuts, soy, fish, shellfish and peanuts. One out of four Americans or 85 million people avoid purchasing foods with these allergens. However, only an estimated 32 million Americans are at risk of having life-threatening allergic reactions.
When you have a potentially life-threatening allergy, you must be vigilant. Accidental exposure to an allergen might be fatal. If you are a health care professional and have a latex allergy, the recent updated glove use guidelines issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has made that vigilance even more challenging. By relaxing the guidelines, the FDA may have created an environment where there are more latex proteins in a healthcare setting.
FDA’s Revised Glove Guidelines Impact People with Latex Allergy
Reporting courtesy of the Allergy and Asthma Network
June 19th, 2020
In March, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) updated its glove use guidelines for healthcare professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic. These guidelines, however, loosen latex allergy standards and may potentially put people with latex allergy at risk.
The guidelines include no precautions or education for latex allergy patients and there is no latex warning required on glove labels. The action also suggests that healthcare professionals can extend use of medical gloves between patients, a poor use of glove practice. As a result of these guidelines, latex proteins may now be more present in healthcare settings.