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What foods commonly cause food allergies?

It can be tricky to identify what food is causing your allergic reaction, especially if you're reacting to a spice. Such less obvious reactions will require a bit of detective work.

Answers to these questions can be revealing:

  • When did the reaction occur?
  • Does the reaction in question happen after eating a certain meal or food?
  • Was the food that caused the reaction fully cooked?
  • What else was eaten (including spices, beverages, condiments...)?
  • Did anyone who ate what you did experience the same symptoms?
Joan Salge Blake, MS, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics Specialist

The major foods known to cause an allergic reaction are:

  • fish
  • milk
  • egg
  • shellfish
  • tree nuts
  • peanuts
  • soybeans
  • wheat
Ms. Vandana  R. Sheth
Nutrition & Dietetics Specialist

While any food can cause a food allergic reaction, eight foods account for 90 percent of all food-allergic reactions in the US: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts (e.g., walnuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios, pecans), wheat, soy, fish and shellfish.

The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) is a valuable resource for people with food allergies.

Continue Learning about Food Allergies Causes & Risks

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.