The Cereal Killer

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The Cereal Killer

Is Peter Pan a war criminal? It is a proven fact that Peter Pan is responsible for the deaths of thousands of innocent civilians. No, not THAT Peter Pan. Peter Pan, Smuckers, Skippy, Jif and all brands of peanut butter are potential killers for people who are severely allergic to peanuts and peanut products. Did you know that one of the ingredients in some flavors of Jelly Belly jelly beans is peanut flour? Did you know that food, processed in equipment that has previously processed food containing peanuts, may be as lethal to the severely allergic as food containing peanuts? If your answer is No, then read on. Here is a story that sounds like something from Stephen King.

True food allergies are rare. The FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) estimates that only 2% of the adult population of the United States is allergic to foods. Further, only eight foods cause 90% of all food allergic reactions. They are milk, egg, wheat, peanut, soy, tree nuts, fish and shellfish (Food Allergy Network). Many reactions to foods are really intolerance (reaction of the metabolism due to a chemical deficiency) rather than allergy (reaction of the immune system). Many infant allergies, which are later outgrown, are thought to be the result of immature immune systems. However, other allergies become stronger as the person ages and inadvertently becomes more exposed. One report on KCBS radio indicated there may be a link between mothers who ate peanuts during pregnancy and their children’s subsequent allergies.

One of the reactions to peanut allergies is anaphylaxis which is characterized by swelling of the mouth and throat, a feeling of panic or dread, followed by a drop in blood pressure, unconsciousness and death. I was on a Southwest Airlines flight to Los Angeles and the snack being served was peanuts. People all around me were eating…...

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