On Wednesday, September 23, FARE was joined by Dr. Stephanie Leonard, the director of the Food Allergy Center at Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego, CA, for a webinar on the topic of Adults with Food Allergies: Not Only Surviving, but Thriving.
This is a topic Dr. Leonard knows all too well as she was diagnosed with a peanut allergy as a toddler. During the presentation, she shared both her personal experiences as an adult with food allergies and the advice she gives her own patients.
Dr. Leonard started her presentation with some data about adults with food allergies, including:
- About 9 million adults (3 to 4 percent of the population) have food allergies.
- Only 50 percent of adults with food allergies have been seen by an allergist.
- Many adults with food allergies feel limited when it comes to travel, social interactions and careers.
Dr. Leonard then went on cover best practices for managing food allergies at home, at work, dining out, camping, traveling, and dating/relationships. She stressed several times the importance of reading labels: “… read ingredients and labels every time, even if it’s a brand you’ve been buying for years. You never know when the manufacturing processes may change.”
At the conclusion of her presentation, Dr. Leonard fielded several questions from attendees, covering such topics as food allergies while pregnant, how to handle work meetings where unsafe food is present, and traveling overseas.
When asked if she had any recommendations for communicating the significance of food allergies with others, Dr. Leonard recommended explaining the seriousness of the food allergy and share personal experiences. Use humor if needed and try to find people who do understand and surround yourself with those people.
Funding for the webinar was made possible through a generous grant from Mylan.
Additional FARE resources on adults with food allergies:
- Webinar Recording: Food Allergies in the Workplace
- Resources for Adults
- Managing Food Allergies at Work
- Talking to Your Children about Your Allergies
Join our next webinar!
- Speaker: Dr. Robert Wood
- Wednesday, October 14, at 1 p.m. ET