Food allergies are increasingly top-of-mind for many Americans. In fact, one out of every three people in this country claim to have a food allergy of one kind or another. But the science doesn't support these fears. Government and medical association estimates put the actual incident rate at only between one in 25 and one in 70.
Parents are one of the groups most concerned about food allergies, especially as kids go back to school and eat more meals away from home. In many cases, they're also ill-informed about the differences between allergies and intolerances, and the proper course of treatment for each. A new survey conducted among California parents last month reveals that many are self-diagnosing food allergies and eliminating nutrient-rich foods from their child's diet without seeing a doctor first.