Dairy allergies are one of the most common food allergies found. Many patients with dairy allergies tend to have, or have a predisposition to the following:
- heart problems
- diabetes (adult onset)
- diabetes (childhood)
- asthma, airborne allergies, excess mucus production
- arthritic conditions
- ear infections in children
Dairy allergy is a protein phenomenon. It is the protein in the dairy products that the patient has an allergy to. Many people think they have a lactose problem, but most are allergic to one or more of the specific proteins in dairy products. Therefore, lactose-free milk is not a good alternative unless a patient only has a lactose allergy and does not have an allergy to the milk proteins, whey, casien and lactoalbumin (rarely the case).
Something else to keep in mind is that many people with a dairy allergy are NOT of the anaphylactic type. An example of anaphylactic that most people know is that of a peanut allergy. These are the life threatening allergies where you swell up like a ballon and have to go to the ER. The Dairy allergy that we are talking about is that of a delayed food allergy. This type of food allergy can become life threatening over a number of years as it can start a negative cascade of events in the body which end with serious disease.
What needs to be considered is proper testing for delayed food allergies. Unfortunately with dairy allergies as with all delayed food allergies, your Allergist does NOT test for these. The typical scratch test your allergist does only looks for the acute life threatening allergies such as the peanut allergy. This is why most people suffer their whole life with these delayed food allergies.
If you are concerned you or your loved one may be suffering from a delayed dairy allergy or any other food allergy please contact us at the FMWC!