Food For Ears

If your child has a recurring middle-ear infection, the real culprit could be a food allergy. Take away the food and the infection may clear up. That's what happened in a new study by Talal M. Nsouli, an allergist at the Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, D. C.

Tests showed that about 80 percent of a group of 104 children with recurring ear infections were allergic to a food they commonly ate. When the children were denied the offending food for four months, the ear infections cleared up significantly in 86 percent of the cases. And the clincher: When these youngsters resumed eating the offending food, clogged middle ears showed up again in 95 percent of them within four months.

Worst culprits: milk and wheat. About one-third of the kids were allergic to milk and another one-third to wheat.

Here's how it can happen, explains Dr. Nsouli: The food allergy may cause a swelling of the middle-ear, leading to a stagnation of fluids that become overrun with bacteria.

Such middle-ear infections, known as otitis media, strike about two-thirds of children by age two. Checking for food allergies could prevent surgery and permanent damage, says Dr. Nsouli.

Natural Way Publications, Inc.

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By Jean Carper

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