How can a tree nut allergy be managed?

The best way to manage a tree nut allergy is to completely avoid tree nuts and any foods cooked in nut oils, as well as any foods that might have been contaminated with nut allergens. You should read food labels carefully – as tree nuts are one of the “big eight,” pre-packaged foods will state whether or not they contain nuts. When eating out or at someone else's house, make sure to ask which dishes contain nuts and which do not. You should also ask which dishes have been cooked using ground nut oils, as these oils may also contain allergens.

It may be hard to determine whether some foods have been contaminated with nut allergens (for example, if they are prepared in the same mills or factories, or stored in the same containers). You should ask staff at restaurants and shops. Labels may give an indication if food is contaminated with nut allergens. Often, you might see the words “May contain nut traces,” which will give an indication of contamination.

Greek, Chinese, and Mediterranean cuisine often uses lots of nuts, so it is important that you take care when eating out at Greek, Chinese, and Mediterranean restaurants. Nuts are also an important ingredient in baklava, marzipan, pesto, nougat, pralines, Nutella, and other chocolates. Nuts can also be found in certain breakfast cereals and cereal bars, granola, ice cream, pastries and other products from a bakery, and macaroons. Read labels carefully.

You should always carry your EpiPen with you in case you have an episode of anaphylactic shock. You can train your friends and family to recognise the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis and in using the EpiPen.

Tree nut allergy Guide Index:

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