Everything you want
to know about allergies

Advice and recommendations
for patients from EAACI experts

EAACI has developed this website to offer updated and reliable information on allergy to patients & families. Disclaimer

Food Allergy

ManagementWhen you are diagnosed with a food allergy, you need to remove all food products that cause reactions from the diet.

When you or others cook for you, it is important to avoid contamination of your food with the food that you do not tolerate. Contamination may happen through spilling, spatters, crumbs, not separating the diet food well, and dirty hands, plates, or silverware. It is therefore very important that you tell family, friends and different caterers about your allergy.

By law, the following allergenic foods or products made of these foods always will have to be listed when they are ingredients in a pre-packed food product in Europe:

Cereals containing gluten - i.e. wheat, rye, barley, oats and spelt
Crustaceans and Molluscs such as shrimp, lobster, and octopus
Milk, Eggs, Fish
Peanuts, Lupin, Soybeans
Nuts - i.e. Almond, Hazelnut, Walnut, Cashew, Pecan nut, Brazil nut, Pistachio nut, Macadamia nut and Queensland nut
Celery, Mustard, Sesame seeds
Sulphur dioxide and sulphites

Some foods have the label ‘May contain peanuts’ or ‘May contain milk’ etc. The food industry uses this label on their own initiative to warn allergic consumers of a possible contamination with an allergenic food. Different food producers use different criteria for using the ‘May contain’ label. Therefore the label represents different levels of risk.

It is often difficult to avoid certain foods and a risk remains that you, by accident, may eat a food which you do not tolerate. Mild symptoms may be treated with antihistamines. If you are at risk of severe allergic reactions, your medical specialist may advice you to carry the medicine adrenaline for emergency situations.