(KTSF by Jo Wan)
On vacation in Mexico, young B.J. Hom asked his father, ” Dad, my throat hurts, can you buy me some cough drops? ” The father, Brian Hom, had no idea that would be B.J.’s last words before dying from an allergic reaction to peanuts.
Brian said both he and his wife don’t have peanuts allergies. However, his three sons all tested positive to having severe peanut allergies. Last October, the Hom family launched the B.J. Hom Memorial 5K Run and Walk. The purpose is to raise awareness about food allergies especially to the Asian community and raise money for research into the cause of allergies. The exact cause of peanut allergies is unknown.
The prevalence of peanut allergies in China is much lower than in the United States, despite a high rate of peanut consumption in China. Dr. Schuman Tam who is a specialist in adult and pediatric allergies said there is a hypothesis of what may cause peanut allergies among children. One is the effect different cooking methods may have on peanuts. In China, peanuts are commonly fried or boiled, whereas in the United States peanuts are typically dry roasted. Dr. Schuman suggested that people who have a peanut allergy should carry an auto-injector that can save someone’s life if they have a serious allergic reaction.
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