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Why is the peanut allergy an epidemic that only seems to be found in Western cultures? Over four million people in the United States alone are affected by peanut allergies, while there are no reported cases in India, a country where peanuts are the primary ingredient in many baby food products. Where did this allergy come from, and does medicine play any kind of role in the phenomenon? After her own child had an anaphylactic reaction to peanut butter, historian Heather Fraser ...
Why is the peanut allergy an epidemic that only seems to be found in Western cultures? Over four million people in the United States alone are affected by peanut allergies, while there are no reported cases in India, a country where peanuts are the primary ingredient in many baby food products. Where did this allergy come from, and does medicine play any kind of role in the phenomenon? After her own child had an anaphylactic reaction to peanut butter, historian Heather Fraser decided to discover the answers to these questions.
In The Peanut Allergy Epidemic, Fraser delves into the history of this allergy, trying to understand why it largely develops in children and studying its relationship with social, medical, political, and economic factors. In an international overview of the subject, she compares the epidemic in the United States to sixteen other geographical locations, finding that in addition to the United States, in countries such as Canada, the UK, Australia, and Sweden there is a one in fifty chance that a child, especially a male, will develop a peanut allergy. Fraser also highlights alternative medicines and explores issues of vaccine safety and other food allergies, making his book a must-read for every parent, teacher, and health professional.
Posted March 6, 2013
Have you ever wondered WHY there are so many kids with peanut allergies these days? Heather Fraser did after her child had an anaphylactic reaction to peanut butter.
I’ve heard that a worried mom with a sick kid does better research than the FBI, and this book proves that point.
WHY IS THAT?
Ms. Fraser quickly points out that peanut allergy used to be a concern only for Western countries – why is that?
She indicates that there was a sudden rise in the U.K., U.S., Canada and Australia around 1990, and it worsened through the 2000′s – why is that?
The odds of a Western child developing a peanut allergy were 1 in 75 as of 2008 – why is that?
She also writes that the person most likely to develop a peanut allergy is a male born after about 1990 in said Western countries whose “ability to detoxify had been challenged by environmental factors” – why is that?
She finds it difficult to accept, as do I, that “hundreds of thousands of children had become allergic to this one food in the space of just twenty years by ingestion alone.”
You can’t blame it on genetics, as the overall rate would stay the same. Logically, there would have to be something in the environment (food, toxins, etc.) that’s triggering this rise.
AN EPIDEMIC OF CHILDREN'S CHRONIC HEALTH CONDITIONS
For those of you who don’t know me, I am a Certified Holistic Health Counselor and Board Member of Epidemic Answers, a non-profit that provides information to parents of children with autism, ADHD, allergies, asthma and any other chronic neurological, behavioral, digestive and/or autoimmune conditions (the etiology is the same). We let parents know that recovery is possible.
I began my own investigations into this epidemic after my sons developed colic, projectile vomiting, cradle cap, ear infections, severe acid reflux, developmental delays, failure to thrive, asthma, Sensory Processing Disorder, hypotonia, eczema, mitochondrial dysfunction and food sensitivities (HINT: They’re all related.)
This is why I find Ms. Fraser’s book so fascinating: she is another mom that has learned to think for herself and do her own research and find out WHY this epidemic is happening.
STANDARD THEORIES NOT SUFFICIENT
She writes about different theories and why they alone are not sufficient to describe this epidemic. These theories are:
The broken-skin hypothesis
The ingestion hypothesis
The toxin hypothesis
The helminth (worm) hypothesis
Instead, Ms. Fraser proposes a new hypothesis: the dramatic increase in peanut allergies happened at the same time that the number of vaccines that children were given also increased dramatically.
And why not? She points out to us that “immunologist and Nobel laureate Charles Richet and pediatrician Clemens von Pirquet were able to show how the injection of vaccine proteins had caused the first allergy epidemic” over 100 years ago.
Apparently, we’ve forgotten our history, so we’re doomed to repeat it.
SO WHAT'S CAUSING IT?
With the skill of the historian that she is, Ms. Fraser points out several key facts that point to our vaccination policy as the cause of this alarming rise in peanut allergy, which is paralleled by alarming rises in autism, ADHD, asthma and other chronic health conditions.
The clues she details are:
* “Medical literature illustrated that the only means by which immediate and mass allergy had ever been caused was by injection.” It used to be called “serum sickness” as early as the 1890′s.
* Multi-dose vaccines came into being after President Reagan “signed the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act from which emerged the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) in 1988. VICP was a ‘no-fault’ alternative to the tort system… (and) the pressures on vaccine makers eased.”
* In 1985, 7 vaccines were given to children. By 2007, the number had grown to 37.
* Beginning in 1993, multiple vaccinations were given in a single needle.
* Vaccines are loaded with adjuvants, such as aluminum, that stimulate the body to mount an immune response. Adjuvants can cause allergic reactions and are the “immunologists’ dirty little secret’. Aluminum is a known IgE-stimulating adjuvant.
* Peanut oil is used to make vaccine formulations. Not only is it impossible to remove all the proteins (proteins cause the allergic reaction) from the oil, but the quality of oil varies widely. “Refined peanut oil can create allergy whether consumed or ingested.”
* Incidentally, Ms. Fraser points out that soy and egg white are used to make lecithin in vaccines. She didn’t explain in great detail, perhaps because it was out of the scope of this book, but this fact may be what’s behind the huge increase in soy and egg allergies, as well.
Before you dismiss this book out of hand and say it’s a bunch of hooey written by an anti-vaxer, I urge you to read it first, follow her logic and research the references she has prolifically listed. Then you can make up your own mind and think for yourself.
Posted August 2, 2011
Enjoyed reading the book. There has to be a reason why suddenly there is a serious peanut allergy epidemic among our children. This book explains the most likely cause of the epidemic.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.