Many people who have no symptoms of a food allergy can suddenly develop one. The main problem is that those with no history of an allergy often have no idea why they're suddenly breaking out or showing cold symptoms. So how does someone with no food allergy suddenly develop one?

From Nothing to Something

Food allergies can occur at any age, but many people figure out they have one as children. As an adult, it's possible the idea of developing an allergy to a food item has never once occurred to you. Many people assume that allergies only occur in youth, but that's not true.

Provoking Hidden Allergies

There's also a possibility that you did have the allergy all along and never knew it. For example, a food allergy developed as a child can go dormant for years. This is especially true if you stopped eating something that triggered it or stopped eating as much of it.

Fast forward to adulthood where you find that food item all over again and start eating it heavily. This can trigger an allergy that you didn't know you had or forgot all about. In these cases, it's not nothing to something. It's something that was always there suddenly coming to life.

The Weakening and Overburdened Immune System

Your immune system can also contribute to sudden allergies that didn't exist before. Your immune system can weaken over the years, and it can become overwhelmed as well.

A weakening immune system invites a host of possible problems, with a new allergy being one of them. As your body loses some of its ability to handle certain food allergens, you will start to see some of the negative effects.

For example, you can eat peanuts all your life. You never see any harmful effects, but as your immune system weakens, your body will lose some of its ability to deal with peanuts. Suddenly, you have a peanut allergy on your hands where there wasn't one before.

An overwhelmed immune system can also trigger a new allergy. For example, if you spent a good part of your life eating things that lacked a certain kind of allergen, then your immune system has never had the chance to deal with it.

All that can change if you move to a new place where a good chunk of the food comes from something containing allergens you've rarely had to deal with. Shellfish is a good example of this. That allergen will overwhelm your immune system if you change your diet to the local one.

The Allergy Mystery

Both a weakening immune system and an overwhelmed one can occur one after the other. And while many medical professionals know what can cause an adult allergy, there are still many mysteries concerning allergies and allergic reactions.

It's not always a weak immune system that causes the allergy, and it's not always an overwhelmed one either. Sometimes it really is a case of an allergy appearing out of nowhere as far as anyone can tell. This is especially true of atopic people who have certain kinds of allergies in their family.

Seek Professional Help if Signs Develop

If you have even the slightest suspicion or sign of a food allergy, you need to see a professional. If you can pinpoint what food makes you feel uneasy, you should try avoiding it as much as you can. If you experience something more severe like trouble breathing or dizziness, you should seek emergency medical attention.

In all cases, you should see an allergist or immunologist. They can administer food allergy testing to help figure out precisely what triggered the allergic reaction. They can also give you information on what you can do to deal with your food allergy in your everyday life.

To talk to a professional about allergies, contact a company such as Allergy Asthma & Immunology Center.