Feeding  Children

Some Topics

Asthma in Children: Food Allergy

Food allergy is a common and often neglected cause of asthma in children. In a group of 320 allergic children with eczema, 55% had asthma. Food challenges triggered respiratory symptoms in 59% of including nose congestion, laryngeal edema, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Gastrointestinal symptoms occurred in 41% of positive challenges. 

Asthma is increasing world-wide and higher numbers of deaths from asthma in affluent countries worry authorities. The Center for Disease Control in Canada reported a threefold increase of asthmatic deaths over 20 years, mostly in teenagers and young adults.

Food Sources

Food allergy can cause both immediate and delayed patterns of asthma. Immediate food reactions can cause sudden, dramatic and life-threatening asthma is one of the consequences of anaphylactic reactions to food. Delayed patterns of food allergy can cause chronic asthma and/or bronchitis and are among the most neglected causes of chronic "intrinsic" asthma.  If asthma is chronic and tends to occur in all seasons and is not related to airborne exposure, then consider delayed pattern food allergy as the cause and do diet revision using the Alpha Nutrition Program.

While airborne problems are more obvious to asthmatic sufferers, food problems may be a well-hidden source of lung-disease. Many studies of food allergy involve patients with food-induced asthma; the asthma is easily recognized if symptoms begin within a few hours of eating food and is the asthma is associated with other symptoms of food allergy. Eczema and asthma are often associated in atopic patients with food allergy.

James et al reported that in a group of 320 children with atopic dermatitis, 55% had asthma. Food challenges triggered respiratory symptoms in 59% of including rhinitis, laryngeal edema, wheezing, and dyspnea. Gastrointestinal symptoms occurred in 41% of positive challenges.

Wraith stated: "Food allergy is a very important cause of asthma but is often overlooked. It is important because it may cause severe symptoms and asthma still has a high mortality despite improvements in drug therapy. It is overlooked because the usual skin tests are often negative and the history is often not helpful as symptoms appear gradually hours or days after ingestion of the food."

Patients with no positive skin tests react to foods. In Wraith's studies, milk, wheat, egg, yeast, preservatives, colorings, coffee and cheese were the main foods implicated. Other manifestations of food allergy are typical in 65% of the asthmatic patients. In children under 15 years eczema, gastrointestinal symptoms, rhinitis and nasal polyps, enuresis, and behavior problems were common. Older patients had more gastrointestinal symptoms, rhinitis, arthralgias, and migraine headaches. Diet revision with elimination of foods or a "hypoantigenic" diet were used to induce remission of symptoms then foods were re-introduced to determine reactivity.

In a review of 320 children and young adults with atopic dermatitis 55% had asthma. With food challenges respiratory symptoms occurred in 236 (42%) including nasal symptoms, dyspnea, wheezing, and laryngeal edema.

Food allergy patients are often given antibiotics repeatedly, since allergic symptoms and infection symptoms are similar. Antibiotics may offer no benefits and may increase the risk of further allergic reactions. Many patients report long-term deterioration after repeated or prolonged antibiotic use. This apparent adverse effect of antibiotics has been blamed on yeast overgrowth in GIT, but the real reason is probably more complex.

The good news is that complete diet revision may allow remission of chronic symptoms. Asthma that seems to originate inside the body (intrinsic asthma) should be treated as food allergy until proven otherwise. This assumption should lead to careful diet revision. Our patients usually have asthma with associated symptoms that suggest a whole-body food allergy problem.

A comprehensive management plan will include solving the food allergy problem, solving airborne allergy and toxicity, and providing the right medication, at the right doses and at the right time when preventive efforts fail. The most serious airborne problems at home are cigarette smoke, dust, molds, and house dust mites.

Patients following the Alpha Nutrition Program experience a reduction or clearing of asthma symptoms, but they are vulnerable to acute attacks if they eat the wrong food. The attacks occur in a sequence, usually beginning with nose and throat congestion, coughing and/or wheezing, followed several hours later by a delayed, more serious episode of breathing difficulty. The initial reaction should be treated with a bronchodilator and a steroid which attenuates the delayed response. We also recommend retreating to Phase 1 foods and/or Alpha ENF for several days if the attack is severe.

How to Use the Alpha Nutrition Program

Self -Help: The diet revision program is explained in enough detail in the Alpha Nutrition Manual that an intelligent, well-motivated person can follow the steps outlined. A parent can modify the diet of his or her child to alleviate chronic asthma. Diet revision is an experiment, not a guaranteed cure. The hypothesis is that your "normal" diet is causing or contributing to your child's symptoms. The experiment is to retreat to a low allergy diet and/or take a food holiday diet to find out if he or she improves.

The good news is that your child may benefit greatly by the effort you make. We recommend the slow track for all prolonged and serious symptoms. This means that you follow the rules in Phase 1 of the program exactly. You are trying to establish improvement quickly - at least within the first 10 days.

It is always necessary, therefore, to correct illness problems by complete diet revision using the the Alpha Nutrition Program. A children's rescue starter pack combines this program with the book Feeding Children with a 500 Gram jar of Alpha ENF, our complete nutrition, food replacement formula. You can Order Children Rescue Starter Pack and add the book, Air and Breathing for complete instructions. You can try the Alpha ENF. Find out if your child will accept the formula in juice so that his or her nutrition can be safely supplemented. Then decide when you are ready to begin. The tutorial, Food Allergy in Children gives you a quick lesson in the important topic of food allergy. We devote a whole website to explaining food allergy. The topic is well explained in the book, Feeding Children.