What is food allergy?

A human being has an immune system which recognize foreign objects that have different constituent from its body as the enemy and protect the body from them. When this immune system works on certain things (allergens) abnormally, it is called allergy. In the case of food allergy, “a certain thing” is contained in food.


Also, it is said that food allergies are more common among children. The reason is that children are less capable of digesting allergens is because their digestive function are immature. If you have children, please pay attention to allergies.


What cause allergy?

Most common food includes eggs, wheat, and milk. Other than that, shrimp, crabs, peanuts, soba, and fruits are said to be triggers. Sometimes your own favorite food can be an allergen.



Here are some measures you can take to prevent the allergy from happening.

 Know your own allergen

Even though it may sound simple, knowing your allergen is the best countermeasure.

In Japan, processed food that contain any of the specific seven ingredients of egg, wheat, milk, shrimp, crab, peanut and soba is always required to display that usage on their package.  However, that’s not always the case when you purchase some food that is packed on the spot, ordered food, or foods sold by weight. You need to be careful.

You understand the importance of knowing allergen, the next question is how do you actually know your allergen?


  • Blood test

Based on the blood taken, medical staff examines how much antibodies that are an indication of an allergic reaction are detected in each food tested.

  • Skin test

With a needle called a pricking needle, Dr injects a small amount of allergen into the skin. After 15 hours, the allergen is detected based on the swelling condition of the skin.

  • Oral tolerance test

Oral tolerance test is a test where you take the allergen orally little by little and doctor check the reactions appearing in the body.As it may cause anaphylaxis we recommend you to do this at a specialized agency.


Even if you are vigilant, the possibility of anaphylaxis occurrence is not zero. There is an “adrenaline self-injection medicine” to rely on when it happens. You need to inject adrenaline into your thigh if the symptoms you have are likely to develop into anaphylaxis.


This injection is not the primary treatment of anaphylaxis, so it is necessary to receive appropriate treatment at a hospital after using it. Since adrenaline self-injection drug is not covered by insurance starting in 2011, why don’t you visit your local hospital if you suffer from allergy?