Food for Thought
Being allergic to one kind of nut may not oblige you to avoid all nut varieties, a new study suggests.
Published in the March issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, the study looked at 109 patients at an allergy referral center and found that more than half who were allergic to one kind of tree nut passed the allergy tests for other nuts. (Common tree nuts include almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios and Brazil nuts. Peanuts are technically a legume, not a nut.)
People who are allergic to tree nuts develop symptoms such as hives, itching, flushing and/or rash. In rare cases, nuts can cause a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis, which can be deadly if not treated right away. See an allergist for testing of nuts (and other foods), to find out which you can safely eat and which you should avoid.
Eating tree nuts and peanuts every day has been found to lessen the risk of developing stroke, cardiovascular disease and cancer, and to reduce the risk of dying from other diseases, according to an analysis of studies by researchers from Imperial College London and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.