What Is Sesame Allergy?
Sesame is the ninth most common food allergy among children and adults in the U.S. The edible seeds of the sesame plant are a common ingredient in cuisines around the world, from baked goods to sushi. Several reports suggest this allergy has increased significantly worldwide over the past two decades.1
When a person with an allergy to sesame is exposed to sesame, proteins in the sesame bind to specific IgE antibodies made by the person’s immune system. This triggers the person’s immune defenses, leading to reaction symptoms that can be mild or very severe.
On January 1, 2023, sesame became the ninth major allergen that must be labeled in plain language on packaged foods in the U.S. Products manufactured prior to 2023 may still contain unlabeled sesame and will remain on store shelves until replaced by new inventory.
Approximately 0.23% of US children and adults are allergic to sesame.1
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- Warren CM, et al. Prevalence and severity of sesame allergy in the United States. JAMA Network Open 2019;2(8)e199144.