CNN Health has an interesting piece on food allergies this afternoon. Noting that an increasing number of children in the United States and other industrialized countries seem to be developing allergies, writer Elizabeth Landau outlines possible reasons. (Two such theories: The Western diet has made people more susceptible to developing allergies and other illnesses, and children here may be getting exposed to common allergens, such as nuts and shellfish, at too late of an age.)
The piece follows an earlier article in which Landau called food-allergy diagnosis an "inexact science." Indeed, a Stanford study published in May showed there is no universally accepted method of defining or diagnosing food allergies and hinted that the allergies may actually be overdiagnosed.
Whether allergies are on the rise or not, it's clearly an important area to investigate.