Document Detail

Prevalence of food allergy: an overview.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16313682     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
At present the only cure for food allergy is to avoid eating the food responsible for the allergy. Thus, food allergy or food hypersensitivity is a disease that is not only of concern to the individual who is affected but also to those involved directly and indirectly in supplying and preparing food for the food-allergic individual, and its impact on society should be evaluated on this basis. It is generally assumed that questionnaire-based studies vastly overestimate the prevalence of food hypersensitivity. The reported perceived prevalence of food hypersensitivity varies from 3.24% to 34.9%, which may be explained partly by the difference in reporting lifetime prevalence compared with point prevalence. However, of more importance is the apparent inverse correlation between response rate and prevalence (the higher the response rate, the lower the perceived prevalence). The three most-recent prevalence studies on food hypersensitivity (one on perceived food hypersensitivity and two on confirmed food hypersensitivity) all report estimates for prevalence of approximately 3%, but their criteria for including subjects as being positive are not identical, although they do overlap. Furthermore, because of differences in methodology there is no definitive information to indicate whether the prevalence of food allergy is increasing. However, the high prevalence of pollen-related food allergy in younger adults in the population suggests that the increase in pollen allergy is also being accompanied by an increase in pollen-related food allergy.
Charlotte Madsen
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society     Volume:  64     ISSN:  0029-6651     ISO Abbreviation:  Proc Nutr Soc     Publication Date:  2005 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-11-29     Completed Date:  2006-03-16     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7505881     Medline TA:  Proc Nutr Soc     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  413-7     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Toxicology and Risk Assessment, Danish Institute for Food and Veterinary Research, S?borg.
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MeSH Terms
Epidemiologic Studies
Food Hypersensitivity / epidemiology*
Hypersensitivity / epidemiology
Pollen / immunology
Public Health*
Questionnaires / standards

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