Food Allergies Among Patients of South Asian Origin in the United States
Monday, March 5, 2018
South Hall A2 (Convention Center)
Anita N. Wasan, MD, FAAAAI, Anil Nanda, MD FAAAAI
RATIONALE: The prevalence of food allergy is increasing worldwide. While there is some data regarding food allergy prevalence in South Asia, there is little published data on food allergies of patients living in the United States of South Asian descent. We report data regarding food allergies among patients in the United States of South Asian descent.

METHODS: A chart review was performed of patients of South Asian descent from two major metropolitan areas, Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, and Washington, D.C. Patients had a positive food allergy history and allergy testing (specific IgE or prick skin testing) to foods.

RESULTS: There were a total of 68 patients, with 65 below age 16. All of the patients were born in the United States, and most of their parents were born in India (63) or Pakistan (4). Only 3 patients had a family history of food allergy. The majority of patients (84%) were allergic to multiple foods. Fifty-one patients (75%) were allergic to tree nuts, including walnuts, almonds, and cashews. The next most prevalent allergen was peanut (31%). Twelve patients were allergic to egg, and 4 were allergic to milk.

CONCLUSIONS: This clinical observation revealed tree nuts as the most common food allergy in this population. Additional larger studies in both the United States and South Asia are required to further elucidate the prevalence of food allergies in this population. The allergist/immunologist must be aware of this and other potential food allergies in this specific population.