Meatless Monday: Food Allergies?

(A break from my usual Monday post, but I don’t have any new recipes today, and this is on my mind.)

Twice at daycare, Michael has broken out in little “red splotches” around his mouth. Both times he was eating (store-bought) hummus — which he loves, by the way. Michael likes nearly everything I have given him to this point. A major exception was lentil soup. He rejected that outright.

Anyhoo: so, red splotches. After the first time it happened, M had his 15-month well child visit. I mentioned it to his pediatrician. He said to keep an eye on M for other reactions.

And then it happened again, last Friday.

Here are the ingredients in the hummus: Cooked chickpeas, tahini (ground sesame), soybean and/or canola oil, garlic, salt, citric acid, seasoning and spices, natural flavors, potassium sorbate added to maintain freshness.

I suspect either the tahini or the citric acid.

Aside from talking to our pediatrician again (which I will do), I’m not sure what’s next. I have been very lucky that my children don’t have food allergies (knock on wood). They haven’t reacted (before this Hummus Incident) to anything. M’s even had tastes of peanut butter, nutella, and other stuff with nuts. No reaction.

On the other hand, I don’t know how much he’s really been exposed to citric juices or citric acid (in food). Is there such a thing as a citrus allergy or reaction? Or if it is a reaction to the sesame, is that something that could escalate into a nut allergy?


When I was pregnant with Michael, I had an aversion to nuts. It started out with an aversion to peanuts and peanut butter, but later in my pregnancy I didn’t even like cashews, almonds, and so on. It was a bummer because nuts had been (and now are again) a major part of my diet, one of my go-to snacks (pistachios! You can’t eat just one!), and also a family favorite.

Anyone have experience out there with allergies or food intolerances? Do they start out small and get worse? Or (as I’ve seen it with eggs) are there allergies kids can outgrow? Help?