The evils of food

by Andrew Grossman on January 10, 2008

Kim Severson of the New York Times has this article on the growing interest among parents of food allergies:

Record numbers of parents are heading to doctors concerned that their children are allergic to a long list of foods. States are passing laws requiring schools to have policies protecting children with food allergies. But no one knows why the number of allergies seems to be on the rise, or even if they are rising as fast as some believe.

Ms. O’Brien and leading allergy researchers agree that few reliable studies on food allergies exist. The best estimates suggest that 4 to 8 percent of young children suffer from them, though the reactions tend to grow less serious and less frequent as children grow older.

Even though the science is weak, new laws and policies are enacted under the banner of child safety. Yet as David Bernstein points out, we’ve been down this road before.

{ 3 comments }

1 throckmorton 01.10.08 at 11:54 am

For what it’s worth, the factor cited the most for being related to childhood food allergies is the lack of breast feeding by the mother.

2 duaneage 01.10.08 at 3:10 pm

Another sad case of wishing for something hard enough to make it so.

3 nevins 01.10.08 at 5:18 pm

Once everyone is ‘special’ then no one is special.

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