Sometimes we find the terms allergy and intolerance equally in the same context and referring to one and the other in the same way, but their meaning is totally different. Today on our site we want to put a little light on this field and tell you about differences between allergy and intolerance in children.
A allergy is a reaction of the immune system that affects a large number of organs in the body, while a intolerance it is generally a reaction of the gastrointestinal tract.
According to this, it is convenient to differentiate milk intolerance, generally to lactose, which is produced when there is a lack of enzyme to digest it, it is deficient or when there is a predisposing health condition in the gastrointestinal tract so that it cannot be digested, allergy to cow's milk, or rather, to its proteins.
The protein allergy from cow's milk is a reaction, which can be milder or extremely serious, of hypersensitivity of the immune system to one or more food antigens (proteins), in this case, cow's milk protein.
In more detail, what happens is that the child's immune system identifies the protein as a dangerous agent to attack, and, following the defense protocol, produces antibodies to protect itself from it.
The reaction between these antibodies and the protein in question, no matter how small their amount, triggers the body to produce certain chemicals, such as histamine, whose symptoms include:
- inflammationlips, tongue and even the throat, which can compromise breathing.
- Skin reactions, like hives, pimples, itching ...
- Catarrhal symptoms the type of sneezing, itchy eyes, nasal congestion ...
- Anaphylactic shock, that is, it is a more serious manifestation of allergy. It involves a global reaction of the organism that endangers life, since it affects several vital organs at the same time.
Interestingly, one of the proteins in cow's milk, casein, can cause both allergies and intolerances.
The symptoms of casein intolerance include almost exclusively gastrointestinal symptoms, and, unlike allergy sufferers, children with intolerance can even eating foods with trace amounts or small amounts of casein without developing any reaction.
Casein is found in all dairy products, such as milk, cheese, yogurt, creamy ice creams, dairy desserts or smoothies, although, due to its characteristics of solubility in water and not in fat, it is found in very small quantities in butter or cream.
Additionally, some cold cuts contain casein or caseinates, which are compounds derived from casein, so special care must be taken with deli products, including fresh sausages and cold cuts, checking the labeling.
It can also be contained in chocolate and any food that contains it, chewy candies and some gummies, and even some pharmaceutical preparations.
Industrial pastries, cookies, cakes, and also sliced bread, are other foods that can include casein, since whey is frequently included in its preparation and in it are, precipitated, proteins, like casein.
In addition, depending on the individual sensitivity of the child, the veal It can also generate allergic reactions, although, as a general rule, intolerant people can consume them.
If you notice that your child's body reacts negatively to some food, it is best to go to your pediatrician to examine him and send him different tests to have a diagnosis on the table and proceed to a specific treatment.
You can read more articles similar to Know the differences between allergy and intolerance in children, in the category of Allergies and intolerances on site.