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With the world becoming healthier and cleaner, why are allergies in children increasing?

As a British 20-something year old, my childhood was still in the time when eating mud and the 5 second rule was common knowledge. As an individual with a British-Black diet I have a particularly strong stomach and am one of those people who do not believe in ‘sell-by dates’. If it smells good, it is good!

Over the past few years allergies, especially among children are becoming increasingly common. Maybe as I was in fact a child I don’t remember Susie’s wheat allergy or half the class being unable to drink their milk at lunchtime, but from my foggy recollection allergies were almost unheard of.

A study done by The University of Southampton showed uncommon allergies such as the Cow’s milk allergy are becoming increasingly common, with 1 in 40 children now affected. The UK’s Cow’s milk allergy is known to be the highest in Europe.

Now for the big question, Why?

There are many theories but the big two are our diet & hygiene. One theory blames our modern Western diet. Foods are now high in sugar, fats, carbs & pumped full of God-knows-what (but of course we all knew this). ‘My child doesn’t eat genetically modified food but still has an allergy list as long as my arm’ I hear you cry. It has been proven that our only Organic, free from GMO, naturally reared ingredients are still having the opposite effect! A test done between children in Italy and those in a rural country in Africa showed that the bacteria in African children was actually better than the Italians' due to their natural diet.

There is also another factor to consider, Cleanliness. Bubble-wrapping as it’s called may be having the opposite effect on the children of this generation. Instead of keeping them out of harm's way it is causing further issues. Just like with injections, we are given a bit of a virus allowing our bodies to fight off the disease and build its immunity against it - we are not allowing children this same chance.

So believe it or not mums and dads, just like we had, our children need some dirt in their diet …

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