SEP 21, 2015 1:59 PM PDT

Some Cosmetics Can Lead to Development of New Food Allergies

WRITTEN BY: Kara Marker
Last week allergy researchers from The Alfred and Monash University in Australia revealed a link between allergens in certain cosmetics and the development of food allergies. While previous studies have shown links between wheat in soap, oats in skin care products and peanut oil in moisturizers to the development of food allergies, this study specifically linked goat's milk and oats as allergens present in cosmetics that later cause an allergic reaction to the foods when eaten. 

Do you know what's in your moisturizer?
Topically applying cosmetics with allergen ingredients to broken skin was shown to elicit an immune response to the allergens later when oats or goat's milk were consumed. Although not everyone studied who applied these products were effected, continuous use increased risk of allergy development. Professor Robyn O'Hehir, director of Allergy, Immunology and Respiratory Medicine at the University, said that although these products are described as 'natural,' they still contain ingredients that are known to instigate an allergic reaction. 

According to Merck Manuals, this phenomena is a type of delayed hypersensitivity reaction. When someone uses the product with allergens in it, T Cells can become sensitized to the allergens, unbeknownst to the person. After re-exposure (when ingesting the allergens), the T Cells are activated and induce the inflammatory response. These activated T Cells release cytokines, which in turn release macrophages, neutrophils, and natural killer cells. The body reacts as if it is infected by a dangerous invader, and the person experiences this as an allergic reaction. 

Although studies on this topic continue at The Alfred and Monash University, Dr. O'Hehir urges, for now, that consumers should check the ingredient list of the products they consume. Choosing "bland" cosmetics is the safest way to go, for now. 

In the video below, listen to Dr. Neal Shultz discuss skincare product allergies.


Source: Medical Xpress and the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
About the Author
  • I am a scientific journalist and enthusiast, especially in the realm of biomedicine. I am passionate about conveying the truth in scientific phenomena and subsequently improving health and public awareness. Sometimes scientific research needs a translator to effectively communicate the scientific jargon present in significant findings. I plan to be that translating communicator, and I hope to decrease the spread of misrepresented scientific phenomena! Check out my science blog: ScienceKara.com.
You May Also Like
FEB 23, 2020
Immunology
FEB 23, 2020
New discovery could help preterm babies breathe easy
Babies born more than three weeks before full term are met with complicated and often life-threatening health challenges ...
MAR 23, 2020
Drug Discovery & Development
MAR 23, 2020
Top 5 Candidates for Coronavirus Vaccine Around the World
It’s easy to complain about the role of big pharma in medicine-making and the hassle of dealing with protective pa ...
APR 16, 2020
Cancer
APR 16, 2020
The Unseen Barriers Surrounding Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers in the world. With a poor five year prognosis and lack of effective tr ...
APR 16, 2020
Health & Medicine
APR 16, 2020
Structural Basis of Receptor Recognition by SARS-CoV-2
As mortality and infection rates rise globally, it appears that SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pande ...
APR 21, 2020
Immunology
APR 21, 2020
Sino Biological Focuses on Serological Studies of COVID-19
April 17, 2020, Sino Biological announced this week that the company launched the world’s first coronavirus antige ...
MAY 08, 2020
Immunology
MAY 08, 2020
Vaccine Prevents Virally-induced Type 1 Diabetes
Scientists aren’t exactly sure what causes type 1 diabetes, although genetics and environmental factors are presum ...
Loading Comments...