FAIRFAX, Va. (April 28, 2009) – As part of its ongoing efforts to educate people about food allergies and reduce risk-taking behavior during Food Allergy Awareness Week and on a daily basis, the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) reminds everyone to CAP It!
Carry your medicine. Avoid your allergen. Plan ahead to prevent a reaction. Simply put, CAP It can save a life.
For the 12th annual Food Allergy Awareness Week, May 10-16, 2009, FAAN is highlighting the need for improved education and awareness about food allergies and the need to "Take Action, Prevent Reactions." These efforts are vital to improving safety and avoiding a reaction, whether it's teaching a child's classmates how to recognize the signs of an allergic reaction or encouraging teachers, athletic directors, or other school officials to learn how to use an epinephrine auto-injector. Though food allergies can be fatal, this is a condition that can be safely managed through education and preparedness.
"Food allergies can be challenging to manage, but we know that reactions can be prevented by taking a few simple steps," said Julia Bradsher, CEO of FAAN. "Adults and children with food allergies and their families can empower themselves every day by taking steps to safeguard against reactions. By sharing their knowledge with others during Food Allergy Awareness Week and throughout the year, we hope to reduce the number of reactions and save lives."
As the prevalence of food allergy rises, particularly among children, there is an increasing need for education and awareness about food allergies as well. About 12 million Americans, including 3 million children, have food allergies. While there are many encouraging research studies underway, there is no cure for food allergies. Avoidance is the only way to prevent a reaction.
"Food Allergy Awareness Week is a really good opportunity for people with food allergies to go out in the community and tell people exactly what they want them to know about food allergies," said Caitlin Krutsick, 17, of Bethlehem, Pa., who is allergic to peanuts and tree nuts. She has learned to speak up about her food allergies, and is not only an advocate for herself, but for others with food allergies.
Take time during Food Allergy Awareness Week to help those with food allergies "Take Action, Prevent Reactions." Visit FAAN's website, www.foodallergy.org, to sign up for a free packet of information and to download a wealth of Web exclusive materials – from posters to children's activities to educational presentation templates.
FAAN would like to recognize this year's Platinum Corporate Sponsors of Food Allergy Awareness Week: Food Lion, LLC, McKee Foods Corporation, and Publix Super Market Charities, Inc., and this year's Silver Corporate Sponsor, the Grocery Manufacturers Association.
Founded in 1991, the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) is the world leader in information about food allergy, a potentially fatal condition that afflicts approximately 12 million Americans, or one out of every 25. A nonprofit organization based in Fairfax, Va., FAAN has 30,000 members in the U.S., Canada, and 62 other countries. It is dedicated to increasing public awareness of food allergy and its consequences, to educating people about the condition, and to advancing research on behalf of all those affected by it. FAAN provides information and educational resources about food allergy to patients, their families, schools, health professionals, pharmaceutical companies, the food industry, and government officials. For more information, please visit FAAN at www.foodallergy.org, www.faankids.org, and www.faanteen.org.