Are 'too clean' lives causing rise in child diet allergies?

Increasing numbers of children need hospital treatment for gut allergies caused by reactions to everyday foods such as milk and bread, claims a leading doctor.

Some experts believe over-hygienic lifestyles are driving the rise in allergies and asthma. Previous generations were exposed to more dirt and microorganisms, which kickstarted their immune systems. Other causes could include Caesarean births, which may affect the immune system, and early use of antibiotics.

Gut allergies are difficult to pinpoint. Some sufferers have to wait years to get a proper diagnosis, suffering pain and losing valuable time at school, according to Dr Nikhil Thapar of Great Ormond Street Hospital, London.

Dr Thapar, a consultant gastroenterologist and clinician scientist, hopes tests will be developed within a ‘couple of years’ that are faster and more sophisticated than existing methods which include endoscopy and eliminating certain foods. He said his unit investigates hundreds of children a year with gut allergies.

Source - Daily Mail


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