Following on from my recent nut blog, I thought I’d tackle the obvious non-nut: the peanut. Is peanut-free living more or less challenging than the other nuts?
Peanut allergy is probably the most well known of allergies, which potentially increases awareness amongst non-allergy sufferers more wary, in turn potentially making an peanuts as an allergen easier to avoid. That said, a lot of people lump all ‘nuts’ together, including true nuts, peanuts, coconuts, pine nuts, etc. Peanut allergy is also renowned for its severity: we hear in the mainstream media about those people who can’t be in the same room, aeroplane cabin, etc. as someone else eating peanuts due to the risk of airborne reactions, although some sources (for example, the Peanut Institute ) suggest that this is unlikely.
On the other hand “[p]eople with confirmed peanut allergy may have cross-reactivity to tree nut, soy, and other legumes, such as peas and lentils” (citations provided on the Wikipedia article “Peanut allergy”). Yep, Jerry has adverse reactions to varying degrees to all of these foods (which seem to be consistent with eosinophilic oesophagitis).
It’s also interesting to think about peanut oil – not used super commonly, and thought to be okay for lots of peanut-allergy sufferers, but it’s good to be on the look out. Jerry’s always been warned about watching out for food establishments that use peanut oil, but has yet to come across one that does so.
Jerry recently bought some sunflower butter (specifically meridian organic sunflower seed butter), to try and recreate the peanut-butter experience. However, we discovered it carries a “may contain peanuts”, which suggests it’s missing its main market.
Peanut allergy appears to be on the rise. And it’s said that children with peanut allergies are less likely to outgrow them than other allergies. So we should all be becoming more aware of these kind of issues. Hopefully we’ll see more adult-focused resources as there is currently a lot of child-focused advice on living peanut-free.
Thanks for reading this part of my series on the top 14 allergens. To find out what I’ve learnt about the other 13 please head back to the blog series home.