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Open AccessArticle

Prevalence of Self-Reported Food Allergies and Their Association with Other Health Conditions among Adults in Saudi Arabia

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Sharik Association for Health Research, Riyadh 13326, Saudi Arabia
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Ministry of Health, Riyadh 11176, Saudi Arabia
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Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam 31441, Saudi Arabia
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King Faisal University, AlAhsa 31982, Saudi Arabia
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College of Medicine, Alfaisal University, Riyadh 11533, Saudi Arabia
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Saudi Food and Drug Authority, Riyadh 13513, Saudi Arabia
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Liver Transplant Centre, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre, Riyadh 11211, Saudi Arabia
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Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(1), 347; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010347
Received: 10 December 2020 / Revised: 1 January 2021 / Accepted: 2 January 2021 / Published: 5 January 2021
Food allergies are a potentially life-threatening health issue, and few studies have determined their prevalence throughout Saudi Arabia. The main objective of our study was to estimate the prevalence and distribution of self-reported food allergies, and explore their association with other health conditions among adults in Saudi Arabia. This study was a nationwide cross-sectional survey conducted via phone interviews in June 2020. A proportional quota-sampling technique was used to obtain equal distributions of participants by age and gender across the 13 regions of Saudi Arabia. Self-reported food allergy, height, weight, health conditions, mental health status, and demographic variables were collected. Of the 6239 participants contacted, 4709 (75.48%) participants responded and completed the interview. Furthermore, 50.1% of the participants were female, with a mean age of 36.4 ± 13.5 years (18–90 years). The prevalence of food allergies was 19.7%. The most self-reported food allergies were egg, shellfish and shrimp, and peanuts, with a prevalence of 3.7%, 3.1%, and 3.0%, respectively. There was an association between the presence of food allergies and reported bariatric surgery, asthma, colon disease, and being at risk of depression. Bariatric surgery was significantly associated with lower likelihood of self-reported allergy (OR 1.69, 95% CI 1.22–2.34, p = 0.002). This study revealed, for the first time, a high prevalence of self-reported food allergies among adults in Saudi Arabia in a large nationwide sample, and food allergy association with bariatric surgery, asthma, colon disease, and being at risk of depression. This information is valuable for clinicians and policymakers, particularly in terms of food allergen labeling. View Full-Text
Keywords: Saudi Arabia; food allergy; allergens; prevalence; risk factors Saudi Arabia; food allergy; allergens; prevalence; risk factors
MDPI and ACS Style

Althumiri, N.A.; Basyouni, M.H.; AlMousa, N.; AlJuwaysim, M.F.; BinDhim, N.F.; Alqahtani, S.A. Prevalence of Self-Reported Food Allergies and Their Association with Other Health Conditions among Adults in Saudi Arabia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 347. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010347

AMA Style

Althumiri NA, Basyouni MH, AlMousa N, AlJuwaysim MF, BinDhim NF, Alqahtani SA. Prevalence of Self-Reported Food Allergies and Their Association with Other Health Conditions among Adults in Saudi Arabia. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(1):347. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010347

Chicago/Turabian Style

Althumiri, Nora A.; Basyouni, Mada H.; AlMousa, Norah; AlJuwaysim, Mohammed F.; BinDhim, Nasser F.; Alqahtani, Saleh A. 2021. "Prevalence of Self-Reported Food Allergies and Their Association with Other Health Conditions among Adults in Saudi Arabia" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 1: 347. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18010347

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