FDA Food Allergen List

1) Eggs


2) Fish  flounder, cod, perch, haddock, salmon and tuna


3) Milk


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4) Peanuts/Peanut Butter


5) Shellfish

  • Crustacea – shrimp, crab and lobster
  • Mollusks – clams, mussels, oysters and scallops


6) Soy


7) Tree Nuts walnuts, almonds, pine nuts, etc.


8) Wheat


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What Are Food Allergens?

The structure of the immune system consists of cells, tissue and organs that unite to defend the body against disease causing organisms, bacteria, viruses, parasites and other toxic invaders. The immune system is able to distinguish the body’s antigens from foreign antigens; a substance, usually protein, found on the surface of cells. If a foreign antigen is detected, the immune system will produce antibodies against it.

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When the immune system misidentifies an ordinarily harmless antigen as a threat, it overreacts by producing an abnormal amount of an antibody called immunoglobulin e.

This antibody releases a compound called histamine, which can trigger severe allergic reaction symptoms. Symptoms can emerge anywhere from minutes to hours after exposure. There are many types of allergens, food being one of them.

Baby’s immune systems are premature at birth, making them more prone to experience severe reactions. With that said, it is recommended to wait until your baby is at least 1 before introducing these foods.

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Food Allergic Reaction Symptoms

See your doctor immediately if you suspect your baby has an allergic reaction, as it could be life threatening.

  • Rashes or hives
  • Itching
  • Vomiting
  • Wheezing or difficulty breathing
  • Swelling of the tongue, lips or face
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Drop in blood pressure
  • Blue or purple skin color
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Repetitive cough
  • Eczema
  • Anaphylaxis

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Anaphylaxis is the most severe reaction and is life threatening. This allergic reaction lowers blood pressure, disrupts heart rate and impairs breathing.  Be mindful that your baby may have a mild reaction one time but experience a severe reaction to the same food on another occasion. In that event, it’s best to avoid it all together.

By Mikael Häggström (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons


Allergic reactions can be delayed, especially among infants.  FPIES, food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome is a delayed gastrointestinal allergic reaction that usually occurs in infants that are introduced to foods for the first time.

The symptoms associated with this reaction is vomiting and in some instances bloody diarrhea, which can cause dehydration. If you suspect that your baby is experiencing an allergic reaction, seek medical attention immediately. For this reason, you should introduce new foods to your baby in the mornings or midday.

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