Peanut allergy seems to be increasing among children in Hong Kong. The authors of this study report suggested that this increase might be a result of changes in edible oils. Crude peanut oil (protein content: 100–300 μg/mL) was “ubiquitous in maternal and infant diet in Hong Kong in the past” but has now largely been replaced by olive oil.
The consumption of various oils was estimated from data on imports. Per-capita consumption was calculated on the basis of population over time.
Per capita consumption of crude peanut oil fell ∼30-fold over the last 15 years, whereas consumption of olive oil increased ∼30-fold over the same time period.
It is gaining consensus that avoiding consumption of peanut abrogates development of oral tolerance and increases risk of hypersensitivity through cutaneous exposure. The timing and perhaps the dosage and the balance of cutaneous and oral exposure determine whether a child will have allergy...