It is reported that 8% of U.S. children have a food allergy, some of them severe enough to be considered life threatening. Approximately 125 people die in the U.S. every year from food allergies. Peanut allergy is the most common cause of death from food allergies. There are even kids with multiple food allergies. One of the kids I met through the peanut allergy study I am in, is severely allergic to more than 5 different foods!
Approximately 90% of all food allergy reactions can be attributed to the following foods: eggs, fish, milk, peanuts, shellfish, soy, tree nuts and wheat. Since 2006, food makers have been required to clearly state on food labels (after or adjacent to the list of ingredients) whether their products contain these eight most common food allergens. But you can not rely on food labels alone. Did you know that "arachis" is an alternative term for peanut or that many restaurants add peanut butter to their sauces or chili as a thickening agent?