Label Reading Guidance – CoFar Group


Posted 1.17.13 | Christine Graham-Garo

The first step in food allergen avoidance and management is recognizing the allergen on food labels. This can be much trickier than one thinks. It is most important to recognize when certain words mean something else.

In a goal to find out more about label reading and food allergen avoidance, I heard about a helpful website called the CoFAR Group (CoFAR stands for the Consortium of Food Allergy Research). The website has lots of helpful tools. On the website it states “CoFAR was established to conduct multi-center clinical trials, observational studies, mechanistic studies and basic research towards further understanding of the best possible treatment approaches for food allergies.”

The website has protected sections that are for healthcare professionals. The most helpful section is the tab to the left called “Food Allergy Education Program”.  There are lots of handouts and educational materials with steps to understand and manage food allergies. The area of focus is the section called “Avoiding Food Allergens”. Here you will find a variety of specific food avoidance handouts for egg, milk, peanut, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish, shellfish, and sesame.  Each downloadable handout gives a rich and detailed overview of types of ingredients to avoid for each allergen. Who would think that the word “globulin” on a label means there is egg in the product!

These resources are important for families avoiding food allergens. I hope this website and the handouts will be useful for your family or other families and/or friends you know that may need them. Let us know what you think of the website.

Christine

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