Understanding Food Allergies in Your Toddler

Food allergy is one of the most common types of allergies in children. According to a study*, 8% of children are affected from some kind of food allergy. Peanut is the most common allergen for children suffering from food allergies. Peanut is followed by milk and shellfish. In this article, we are focusing on some of the most common food groups which can be a cause of allergy in infants and toddlers.

1# Dairy

Milk is most common form of food allergy found in infants and toddlers and even older kids. Also known as lactose intolerance, this type of allergy will make your little one unable to digest any kind of milk or milk based products. These will include milk, yogurt, milk solids, cream, cheese etc.

Common symptoms of dairy allergy include the following:

  1. An upset stomach or diarrohea
  2. Eczema, hives and skin rashes
  3. Vomiting
  4. Bloody stools in infants especially

2# Gluten or Wheat

A kid may be allergic to wheat which contains gluten or any food which may contain gluten. If you find yourself suffering from allergic symptoms after eating bread, pasta or noodles, you may have this type of allergy.

Common symptoms of gluten or wheat allergy include

  1. Hives and rashes
  2. Vomiting or nausea
  3. Diarrohea
  4. Stomache
  5. Sneezing and stuffy or runny nose

3# Soy

If foods like soy sauce, soy oil, tofu, tempeh, soy flour gives your an allergic reaction, you most likely have an soy allergy. Soy belongs to the legume family. While it is not necessary that a person allergic to soy will be allergic to other legumes too, it is better to check for it. In most cases of soy allergy, it occurs in kids under age 3 after which they outgrow it, maximum by age 10.

The symptoms of soy allergy are common to other food allergies, so it is important to notice the time and product you have consumed at the time of the allergic attack. Soy is a hidden ingredient in most processed goods, so check the ingredient panel for words like soy lecithin, textured soy protein (TSP), textured vegetable protein (TVP), edible vegetable oil etc. While it seems harmless when you read vegetable oil in the ingredient list, do remember that most of the vegetable oil is soybean oil as it one of the cheapest oils available.

4# Fish

Fish allergy is a common form of allergy found in toddlers. It is a pretty serious form of allergy. A kid who had a mild reaction to fish can go on to have a severe form of reaction the next time. It is not necessarily a seafood allergy. For example, someone who is allergic to fish, might not be allergic to shellfish. While fish allergy can trigger at any point in a person’s lifetime, it can continue forever.

5# Eggs

An allergy to eggs can cause your little one’s skin to break out into itchy hives. Roughly 70% of the kids allergic to eggs grow out of it by the age of 16. The reaction to eggs can range from mild itchiness to life threatening anaphylaxis, just like any other food allergy.

6# Tree Nuts

Nuts like almonds, cashew, pine nuts etc come under the category of tree nuts. This is another serious form of food allergy which may have a serious anaphylaxis reaction. This allergy last a lifetime. The symptoms include

  1. Stomach ache
  2. Diarrhea
  3. Nausea
  4. Shortness of breath
  5. Itchy skin, mouth, throat and eyes
  6. Nasal congestion
  7. Difficulty swallowing

7# Peanuts

Peanut allergy is different from tree nut allergy. A person allergic to consumption of peanuts has this allergy. This one is potentially a life threatening allergy and may cause anaphylaxis. Most common symptoms include:

  1. Itchy skin and hives
  2. Nausea
  3. Stomach ache
  4. Congested nose
  5. Itchiness around the mouth


It is very critical to keep the above symptoms in mind while feeding your kid. There is no saying when and who will get some kind of food allergy. Through observation and meticulousness you can help your child avoid any allergic reaction that may arise.


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