By Dennis Douda, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO)
— Children with Vitamin D deficiencies are two and a half times more likely to be allergic to peanuts, according to a new study from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

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“Food allergies have doubled in the U.S. and Canada,” said Pediatrician Nancy Ott, who is President of the Minnesota Allergy Society.

Up to 8 percent of American Children and 2 percent of adults have food allergies.

While she can use shots to help kids with allergies to pollen or pets, she is frustrated she has very little to offer a child with a potentially deadly food allergy.

“If someone has a food allergy the only standard of care at this point is avoidance,” she said.

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Peanuts are a good example. Some Airlines avoid passing them out as snacks for fear of severe allergic reactions.

Desensitization is strategy under study giving the patient minute exposure to the foods that make them sick.

“A small enough amount that you don’t want them to react to it. This has been studied at Duke University and there are some good results from that with peanuts and tree nuts,” said Ott.

Another possible breakthrough being studied is a Chinese herb nicknamed FAHF.

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