A mystery rash that crops up after a toddler munches on scrambled eggs, a chocolate chip cookie, spaghetti or another egg-based product may be a sign of an egg allergy.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) as many as two percent of all kids are allergic to proteins in either egg whites or yolks. The good news is that 70 percent of those two will outgrow the allergy by prom.
When a child suffers from an egg allergy, the immune system recognizes egg proteins as foreign invaders, and causes it to wage a battle against them culminating in skin reactions or an upset stomach. In the rare worst-case scenario kids can suffer from anaphylaxis, a life threatening response that causes respiratory problems and can send a child into shock. Parents who suspect a food allergy should evaluate the severity of it in a clinical setting to avoid emergency room visits.
Not all baked goods may be off limits. The ACAAI estimates that more than half, or about 56 percent, of kids can tolerate breads or cakes made with eggs that have been baked at 360 degrees or higher for at least 30 minutes. This is because the proteins that cause the symptoms become denatured, or inactivated, with enough heat and time. Parents should avoid feeding all baked goods made with eggs to children who test positive for an egg allergy until a physician verifies that kids do not develop a reaction to certain egg-based goods in a clinical setting.
Kids with more severe allergies can still indulge in eggless cookies or brownies that require shorter baking times. The ACAAI recommends substitutions for recipes that call for three or fewer eggs. To make a faux egg, mix a tablespoon of oil, one tablespoon of water and one of baking powder. Another option for a substitute is to dissolve a packet of unflavored gelatin in two tablespoons of warm water.