Peanut-free tables at schools, no nuts allowed on certain airlines, parents living in constant fear of cross-contaminated restaurant dishes. Why does it seem like every other child has some sort of food allergy!? And doesn’t it seem likely that this situation is only getting worse?
A recent study done by Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine found that childhood food allergies affect 1 in 13 kids, WebMD says.
The survey tracked 38,000 US kids, and found that 8% of kids under 18 are allergic to at least one food, with peanuts, milk and shellfish as the top three offenders. This is twice as much as previous studies estimated.
So, what’s changing? Our kids? Their immune systems? Or could it be all the food processing, chemical additives and genetically modified organisms added to our food supply?
Today’s Healthy Child Healthy World blog post written by their CEO Rachel Sarnoff cites Quebec’s Sherbrooke University Hospital study that found pesticides associated with Genetically Modified (GM) crops in the blood of women, as well as pregnant women, their placentas and their infants. In fact, England and New Zealand are stopping the growth of GM crops until more solid evidence is presented.
It would behoove everyone to watch Robyn O’Brien’s Austin TedX talk (viewed by nearly 200,000 people) on this issue. You might recall our blog post on O’Brien last year. She is the founder of Allergy Kids and author ofThe Unhealthy Truth as well as touted in the NYTimes as “food’s Erin Brockovich”. O’Brien believes the dramatic rises in allergy rates is the direct result of the dramatic increase in the genetically modified organisms that the food industry is now using to grow crops.
So what can we do? Eat organic whenever possible, especially crops that are highly pesticided:
Sweet bell peppers
Information source: Are Your Kids Allergic to Food – or What’s IN it? by Rachel Sarnoff, CEO, Healthy Child Healthy World.
Image source: Fooducate.com