Where did all this come from?
A story on the AP wire today says that food allergies in American children appear to be rising, with about 3 million kids now affected. A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention points to a doubling of peanut allergies as one factor and says children seem to be taking longer to outgrow allergies to milk and eggs. I don't quibble with the findings, but what I want to know is, what's the source of all these food allergies? I don't know about you, but when I was a youngster, food allergies were exceedingly rare. Growing up, I knew one guy who was allergic to tuna. That's it. I went to the Army, went through college, etc., and still I wasn't running into people who were allergic to food. It's been just in the last 10 or 15 years that it seems every third person is allergic to something they eat. I'm sure doctors are doing a better job of recognizing food allergies, but that, alone, can't explain the huge increase in cases. I'll offer my theory, and you can shoot it down, support it or offer one of your own. I think parents are being too careful about what they feed their little ones. When I was tiny (which I realize is hard to visualize if you know me now), I'm sure I wasn't more than a few months old when family members started giving me mashed potatoes, ice cream, etc., and there was never a thought that some foods should be withheld from small children. Today, parents are almost freaky when it comes to controlling their children's food intake. I have a sister-in-law who nearly wet herself when I gave her 1-year-old daughter a deviled egg. The kid's still alive, by the way. Please share your thoughts.
Labels: Life in General