9.10 AM Thursday, 30 November 2023
  • City Fajr Shuruq Duhr Asr Magrib Isha
  • Dubai 05:24 06:42 12:10 15:09 17:32 18:50
30 November 2023

Top common foods people are allergic to

One of the top foods, eggs, can either be avoided completely, or partly, depending on the individual’s intolerance level. (SUPPLIED)

By Amal Al Jabry

Iman H has stopped eating her favourite foods – salmon, eggs, and rice.

She’s recently found out that the they was the major cause of her puffiness, fatigue and bad skin for the past few years.

"I didn’t believe it at first but I noticed the difference myself when I stopped eating them," she said.

With the vast foods out there for us to consume, which ones are the most common that people are intolerant to?

Speaking to Emirates 24|7, Dr M. Jay Al Khatib, Laboratory Director of York Diagnostic Laboratories in Dubai, explained: "Out of the 3000 tests we recently carried out, around 75 per cent of them are wheat, gluten, egg, milk and yeast as the top 5 major culprits."

Authorized to run the tests for the UK labs in-house, Dr Jay added that they receive the blood sample of the patient and screen it for a specific protein, not one of the common ones, which then helps an individual avoid eating a particular type of food.

Interestingly, one of the top foods, eggs, can either be avoided completely, or partly, depending on the individual’s intolerance level.

According to Dr Jay, some people can eat either have the egg whites or the egg yolks as it varies between different people.

Another top entry,  milk, he suggests not just avoiding milk alone, but all the products containing that protein.

He said: "That means no ice cream, no croissant, anything that has milk, they have to watch the label and  read the ingredients of their food for the next few months."

Dr Jay added: "It’s something you can control and it’s very easy, but with something like gluten or yeast, you have to be very dedicated."

By gluten, he’s referring to a mixture of two proteins (gliadin and glutenin) found in wheat endosperm (a type of tissue produced in seeds that's ground to make flour). 

It’s  found in wheat, barley and rye, affecting the elasticity of the dough, affecting  the chewiness of baked wheat products.

The Doctor has had a close experience on the subject.

"I was yeast intolerant at one time and I stopped eating bread for nearly 3 months," he explained.

He added: "I went to the supermarket and looked for the French head baker, and they made a loaf of bread, which looked like a brick, you could hit it against the floor and it will bounce back."

He also highlighted the perks of gradually reintroducing foods back into your system.

Dr Jay continued: "I ate that bread for three months, and now I don’t have an intolerance to yeast anymore."


"As far as allergies are concerned, people vary, because it depends on the environment they came from," he explained.

The Doctor added that the most common inhalant allergen in Dubai happens to be dust mites.

He continued: "Usually this concerns humidity-related issues, like old AC ducts, they will have more dust, or curtains or old beddings or old carpets, as well as cockroaches, and grasses."

Can people really get affected by grass?

Something as simple as walking past grass can trigger an allergic reaction.

"That includes freshly cut grass, breathing in the grass remaining in the air or on the lawn, as the air is puffing them away,  you will get a reaction  or also if you’re sitting on the grass because you will be breathing on the dust coming from the grass, " explained the Doctor.

He’s also seen a lot of cases involving inhalation, especially with cat hair, where some people are so allergic that they get rashes accompanied by puffiness all over their face and body.

"In this case patients go on an immunovaccine treatment course for six months, sometimes a year if needed, to de-sensitize yourself from inhalation allergies, be it a hair of cat, hair of a camel, dust mites, pollens, cow or goat," explained the doctor.

Meanwhile, Iman H plans to gradually reintroduce one of her favourite foods into her system.

"I will try to stay away from Salmon for 3 to 6 months like they suggested, but beyond that, especially with my favourite fish, we shall see!"