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The Top 10 Skin Allergens, Top 8 Respiratory Allergens & Top 8 Digestive Allergens

Not sure what is causing your sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose or itchy skin? How about your upset stomach? Most Americans are, in fact, allergic to something. Over 54.3 percent of us, to be exact, between the ages of 6 and 59 tested positive for one or more allergens, according to the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III).


Know you're allergic but not sure to what? Check out these top allergen lists for some ideas.

Yet even with all of these allergies, only 28 percent of allergy sufferers reported that they were "very knowledgeable" about their allergies, found the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America's first National Allergy Awareness Test.

Ready to become more knowledgeable? Following are the top allergens in the top allergic areas (skin, respiratory and digestive), along with general direction on how to best avoid them.

Top 10 Skin Allergens

  1. Nickel

  2. Gold

  3. Balsam of Peru (a fragrance used in lotions and perfumes)

  4. Thimerosal (a mercury-containing additive found in antiseptics and vaccines)

  5. Neomycin sulfate (an antibiotic found in first-aid creams and ointments)

  6. Fragrance mix (used in foods, cosmetics, dental products and insecticides)

  7. Formaldehyde (a preservative)

  8. Cobalt chloride (a metal used in hair dye, antiperspirant, and medical products)

  9. Bacitracin (an antibiotic used in cream-form)

  10. Quaternium 15 (a preservative found in cosmetic and industrial products)

How to Avoid Skin Allergens

The best approach is to avoid any substances you know you are allergic to, or that cause inflammation, redness, swelling, itching, hives or other upset to your skin. This could be jewelry, cosmetic products or food.

Top 8 Respiratory Allergens

Allergies Mold

If you're allergic to pollen or mold, staying indoors when pollen and mold counts are high is one of the best ways to find relief.

  1. Dust mites

  2. Rye

  3. Ragweed

  4. Cockroaches

  5. Pollen

  6. Mold

  7. Animal dander

  8. Dust

How to Avoid Respiratory Allergies

  • When pollen and mold counts are high, spend more time indoors.

  • Keep windows closed to keep pollen out.

  • Wash bedding once a week in hot water -- it will help get rid of dust mites and other allergy triggers.

  • Keep your home as dust-free as possible. The PerfectClean line of mops, dusters, towels and more, which is used by leading hospitals and other health care organizations, is ideal for this. Rather than just pushing dust around, or worse, stirring it up into the air, PerfectClean's EasyGrip Mop and Flexible Duster are made with positively charged ultramicrofibers that pick up everything in their path--including dust and all of its microscopic attachments.

  • If you spend time outside, change your clothes and wash your hair when you come inside to remove pollen and other allergens.

  • Filter your home's air -- many allergic reactions are triggered by airborne particles. Check out the Way Healthier Home Air Purifier for a top-recommended air purifier.

  • If pet dander is a problem for you, keep pets out of the bedroom (or don't get any pets to begin with).

  • Use strategically place doormats to keep dust, pollen and other allergens where they belong -- outdoors. The Waterhog Grand Premier mats are an excellent choice for this purpose.

  • Use dehumidifiers in basements and other damp areas of your home where mold could grow, and be sure to clean them once a week.

Top 8 Digestive Allergies

The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network says that eight foods account for 90 percent of all food-related allergic reactions:

  1. Milk

  2. Egg

  3. Peanut

  4. Tree nut (walnut, cashew, etc.)

  5. Fish

  6. Shellfish

  7. Soy

  8. Wheat

How to Avoid Digestive Allergies

This one can be tricky, as peanuts, soy, egg, milk and wheat can be hidden in countless foods. If you are allergic to any of these items, you will need to be a diligent label reader. Alternatively, only buy foods you know to be safe. And, when you eat out let the server know that you absolutely cannot have certain ingredients.

The Food Allergy Survival Guide is about not feeling alone with food allergies and helping you open the doors of possibility to a wonderful world of better, whole foods.

Food Allergy Survival Guide

Also, be sure to check out "The Food Allergy Survival Guide Book," our top-recommended source for anyone with food allergies.

You'll learn what your food triggers might be, how to avoid them, easy-to-use alternatives, and even great-tasting allergen-free recipes.

Recommended Reading

The Top 8 Foods People Are Most Sensitive To -- Without Even Knowing It!

You are Burying Your Face in a Hot Zone for Fungal Spores Every Night: Your Pillow

Sources Top 10 Skin Allergens Identified

Eurek Alert: When it Comes to Allergies, Americans Don't Make the Grade

The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network

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