A peanut is a legume and not a tree nut, that is, peanut belongs to the family of soybeans, lentils, and peas. Peanuts are one of the most common allergens (allergy-causing foods) in the world today. They’re associated with some extremely serious and at times, fatal allergic reactions (such as anaphylaxis, a sudden and life-threatening condition) and schools are actively banning peanuts and peanut products from being used on school grounds. There are other ways a peanut can cause serious damage to your body. For example, if you inhale one and it blocks your airway and causes atelectasis; a condition which affects your lungs in a way that the alveoli (air sacs in lungs) stop filling up with air.
Symptoms of allergic reactions to peanuts include:
* nausea, vomiting, belly cramps, or diarrhea
* redness, swelling, itching, or tingly sensation in the skin or mouth, around the mouth, or in and around the throat
* itchy skin or hives in the shape of small spots or large welts
*runny or congested nose, watery and itchy eyes
* impaired breathing, or body going into shock, light-headed, passing out
If you feel like you have a peanut allergy please seek medical attention and advice immediately. If you are looking to avoid peanut allergy reactions, keep reading on to find listed seven ways to for avoiding peanut allergy reactions.
- Read the label before buying stuff:
Because of the number of people with nut allergies, most brands mention on their packaging if the product has any traces of nuts so if you are buying something off the shelf, read the label. Even if you have bought or consumed it before, check the label again in case the ingredients changed.
- Be vocal about it if you or your child has the allergy:
Tell teachers, friends, family, your servers at a restaurant, anyone who may handle the food you or your child eats. Chances are they’ll understand how terrible peanut allergies can be and be careful. Mention how severe it is and suggest alternatives or ask them to avoid all nutty foods.
- Cook your own food:
This way you can make sure no traces of unwanted allergens are in your food. Pack your own lunches and don’t buy stuff from marts when you’re going out to school, college, office, picnics, etc. Bring home-made food and snacks for you and your children to avoid any mishap and keep your epinephrine on you at all times.
- Prevent cross-contamination when handling allergens and non-allergens:
Be extra careful if you use both allergens and non-allergens at home so that you don’t contaminate one with other. For example, don’t use the same knife used to apply peanut butter on bread in a jam without washing it first. Keep nuts away from jars you use to store non-allergens for your allergic kid.
- Practice proper hygiene:
Make sure to wash your hands with soap and water, your utensils with dishwashing soap and water, and clean your countertops, etc. thoroughly to prevent cross-contact and to avoid contaminating your food supply.
- Don’t forget your guests and other people you cook for or serve to:
If you are worried someone in your family or friends circle or someone who is coming over as a guest has the allergy, do not use peanuts at all—because you better be safe than sorry. You might want to ask them about any allergies- not just peanut allergy- they might have so you can avoid using that ingredient and use alternatives instead.
- Consider using alternatives for peanut-based recipes or protein intake requirements:
Some alternatives to peanuts (especially in recipes) can be:
-Seeds: Pepitas (roasted pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds can easily work as a great replacement for peanuts in granola bars, bread, nut butter, etc. Have to give up on peanut butter? Now you can find sunflower seed butter, pumpkin seed butters, flax seed butter, and hemp seed butter.
-Beans: Roasted soybeans, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), or peas, etc. are a nice replacement for nuts in salads. Roast them in the oven for a light and protein-filled snack!
-The super-food known by the name of Tiger nuts is your solution if you are allergic to all or most nuts as tiger nuts are not actually nuts but are small tubers which grow in the ground. They have all the nutritional benefits of nuts and none of the allergies.Author Bio:
This guest post for Tiger Nuts was written by Hassan Khan Yousafzai, he is passionate about Digital marketing. Along with educational background in Software Engineering he is bridging gap between marketing and development department. At Techvando, he has been consulting brands all over Pakistan to gain online traffic and profitable leads.