Section 1: Food Allergy 101
Food allergies are complicated and they are not fully understood which is part of the reason that we don't have a cure or a way to prevent a reaction. In short, an allergy develops when the immune system recognizes the food allergen protein as a foreign invader. The body starts to produce antibodies against the allergen. The next time you ingest the allergen, the body recognizes the protein of the food as a foreign body and sends the antibodies to attack it. As your body is attacking the allergen, it releases a chemical called histamine which produces hives and other allergic symptoms. Sometimes they body reacts in a way that gives you hives, while others it reacts in a way that makes you vomit. An important thing to remember is that prior allergic reactions can't be used as a way to predict a future reaction, because your reaction can be worse the second time. People can be allergic to anything but the most common food allergens are milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, fish, wheat and soy and they can develop reactions at any time. Here is a video that will help explain the science behind food allergies. You can find the guidelines mentioned in the video, below the video if you would like to download them.