Ending the peanut allergy epidemic by Heather Fraser

Peanut Allergy epidemic

Six years ago we reviewed Heather Fraser's first book, The History of the Peanut Allergy Epidemic, which suggested that the peanut allergy epidemic of the last 30 years was a direct result of the ramping up of the infant vaccination progamme. Like Heather, we believed that her book could be a game changer, triggering serious investigation into the allergy/vaccination link. But, like her, we have been disappointed.

There is rarely a single cause for any illness and serious questions are now being asked about the role of our depleted microbiomes and the banishing of intestinal parasites in the development of the allergy epidemic. But the evidence that ever increasing vaccination programmes have also been involved seems far too strong to be ignored.

In the second edition of her book, Heather calls on parents to take up the cudgel and to protect their children by refusing to have them vaccinated. You can buy it in the UK here and here in the US.

In 1995, my one year old son Woody reacted violently with anaphylaxis to a taste of peanut butter. In hindsight, he was part of the ‘first wave’ of an epidemic of life threatening peanut allergy in children that in just 20 years has reached 2 million in the US alone. As these children have aged the combined number of American adults and children with peanut allergy has reached about 4 million.

When the first edition of The Peanut Allergy Epidemic came out four years ago I was optimistic. My training is in historical research and I truly thought that documented evidence rooted in medical literature and primary source materials as to the precipitating cause of the epidemic was key. I thought it would spark meaningful conversation with doctors and allergists. This has absolutely not occurred.


  • the number of children – starting in the first months of life – with life threatening allergies to peanut and other foods has skyrocketed out of control; some estimates suggest 13% of children under age 12 are anaphylactic
  • it is clear that physicians are unable to stop the allergy epidemic because they are part of the problem
  • many allergists know exactly what is going on and some have admitted it in print and on video (watch a 2-minute video of a top Canadian allergist explaining how and why we have so many children allergic to peanut).

The epidemic began suddenly, in specific countries, and at the same time

In the early 1990s, tens of thousands of children with severe food allergy arrived for kindergarten at schools across Canada, the UK, Australia and the US. This sudden phenomenon of life threatening allergy just in kids in specific countries occurred simultaneously, without warning and quickly intensified.

It captured the attention of school professionals such as Toronto teacher Wendy Harris who in 2000 recalled:

About a decade ago, the sudden surge in highly allergic children entering school systems across the province caught many educators off guard… (1)

Eyewitness accounts of the phenomenon of allergic kindergarteners in Canada mirrored those in the UK where on the Isle of Wight doctors noticed a change in sequential cohorts of children born there between 1989 and 1996. (2) Peanut allergy had emerged suddenly and then rapidly increased from 0.5% to 1.5% of children.

In this same window of time peanut allergy erupted in children in Australia.

In the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), hospital admission for food reactions increased by 400% 1993-2004 for children under five. Allergist Ray Mullins did not hesitate to call it an epidemic.(3) By 2011, in Melbourne, 3% of children or 1 in 33 were peanut allergic. (4)

At the same time, peanut allergy in children emerged in the US.

US hospital admissions for food reactions among children soared from 2,615 in 1998 to 9,537 in 2006. (5) NYC allergist Scott Sicherer called the increase in peanut allergy in US children ‘alarming’ after the number shot from virtually zero to almost 2 million in just 20 years. (6)

Current research has avoided looking directly at causes of allergy in infants. The much anticipated 5 year LEAP study (learn early about peanut allergy) delivered a deflated observation in 2015: a major risk factor for developing peanut allergy is allergy. In other words, infants as young as 4 months in this study were at risk of developing peanut allergy because they already had severe food allergies, eczema (milk allergy) and egg allergy. This circular conclusion begs the question yet again: what is causing infants less than 1 year of age to develop severe food allergies?

The answer to this question lies in what everyone has already observed in the sudden nature with which the epidemic began. 

The answer to the peanut allergy ‘mystery’

What has the power to create life-threatening allergy so suddenly, just in kids, in specific countries and at the same time?

Early in the epidemic, doctors were at greater liberty to disclose the answer.

In 1999, UK professor Andrew Taylor-Robinson pointed to the cause of anaphylaxis and atopy (multiple allergies) in children:

What should be discussed is whether the price of a reduction of common infectious diseases through a policy of mass vaccination from birth is worth the price of a higher prevalence of atopy? (7)

In 2001, Canadian allergist Peter Vadas casually pointed out the cause of peanut allergy in children during a Toronto TV show (see this 2 minute video clip).

…one of the spin offs [of early vaccination for children] is that there are [sic] a certain proportion of the population that are going to be more prone to developing allergies as a consequence of that. (8)

Vaccination causes anaphylaxis and allergy to what is in the vaccine. No doctor can deny this. It is a fact supported by more than 100 years of medical literature, the 1913 Nobel Prize in medicine, scores of AEFI reports (adverse events following immunization) and every vaccine package insert.

But since the late 1980s, vaccines have become even more potent, administered in larger combinations (5 or even 7 in a single needle) and adjuvanted (powerful immune stimulating additives such as aluminum and conjugate toxoids). Such powerful vaccines more readily create allergy in infants to what is in the shot as well as what is in the air and the body at the time of (or after) vaccination.

How to create a peanut allergy epidemic

Despite the acknowledged risks inherent in vaccination, the US government removed legal safeguards designed to help protect vaccine consumers in 1986 with the Vaccine Injury Act. Perhaps the Act was intended to support those who had been vaccine injured. But a larger purpose of the Act was to relieve vaccine makers of any liability for injury related to their products.

This Act opened the gates to a vast vaccine market. Manufacturers rushed to fill new US government demands starting with Hib in 1987 that was combined with DPT-IPV by 1994. This first 5-in-1 combination vaccine marketed as PENTA was used in Canada. It was created so quickly for this new open market that it was not licensed. (9) During the 3 years this unlicensed vaccine was administered to Canadian children, doctors reported over 11,000 adverse events that included allergy, anaphylaxis and 15 deaths.

With an increase in number and potency of vaccines starting in the late 1980s, health officials in the US, Canada and other western countries began to target children at 2 months of age. Coverage rates (the numbers of kids being vaccinated at birth, 2 months, 4, 6, 12, 18 months, etc.) quickly rose from about 65% with the old schedule to 95% by 2000 with the new schedule. The pairing of potent vaccines and high coverage rates launched the allergy epidemic in these countries. No one knew there was a problem until the affected children showed up for kindergarten in the early 90s. Again, teachers recall the sudden surge of highly allergic children that caught schools off guard.

And as the schedule expanded, so too did the allergy epidemic.

Moms will end this epidemic, not the doctors

It is crucial for parents to realize that their nice doctor has no legal responsibility for vaccine injury including anaphylaxis (same for government and the manufacturer). Screening for underlying toxic burdens, liver or kidney health prior to vaccination might mitigate adverse outcomes but the one-size-fits all vaccination policy does not accommodate such costs and delays.

Although my son had reacted badly to three doses of PENTA and had developed atopy and anaphylaxis in his first year of life, the doctor wanted to proceed with the schedule. (10) Next was the MMR. By this time, finally, I was aware and asked the nice doctor if he knew of the relationship between vaccination and allergy. He shrugged. And I refused the vaccine.

I said ‘no’.

The hope that I felt 4 years ago that this book might spark conversation with doctors on vaccine-induced allergies has evaporated. Instead, doctors continue to cause allergy and then benefit from treating it. Immunotherapy treatment for infants is supported by the LEAP study. A lead doctor for this study holds shares in a potential immunotherapy blockbuster peanut allergy skin patch. I predict that newborns will soon be sporting these patches to ‘protect’ them from peanut allergy.  … so focused are doctors on treatments that they seem to have blocked the fact that just 20 years ago peanut allergy was virtually unknown.

The odds of a child developing severe allergies from vaccination today may be as high as 1 in 33 (3%) just for peanut and 1 in 7 (13%) for foods generally. It is my belief that even if the number of anaphylactic children were to double or reach 50% or even 100% of all children, physicians would continue to vaccinate and the allergists would continue in their bemused silence.

And so, the second edition of The Peanut Allergy Epidemic stands as a red flag warning from a first wave Mom to other Moms who may just now be starting to realize what is happening. It is to these Moms, future Moms and Grandmothers that I say, you have more power than all the doctors put together.

You have the power to end this epidemic.

Believe it.

And you can do it with a single word: no.

For more see Heather's website at www.paepidemic.com

Buy The Peanut Allergy Epidemic in the UK here and here in the US.

1. Wendy Harris, “Abnormal response to normal things,” Professionally Speaking Magazine, Ontario College of Teachers (Toronto, Sept. 2000).

2. Grundy, J., et al., “Rising prevalence of allergy to peanut in children: data from 2 sequential cohorts”, J Allergy Clin Immunol., 110, No. 5 (Nov., 2002): 784-9.

3. R. J. Mullins, “Pediatric food allergy trends in a community-based specialist allergy practice, 1995–2006,” Medical Journal of Australia,186, No. 12 (2007): 618–621.

4. Osborne, NJ., et al, "Prevalence of challenge-proven IgE-mediated food allergy using population-based sample and predetermined challenge criteria in infants," J Allergy Clin Immunol, 127 (3) (2011): 668-76.

5. Center for Disease control & Prevention. NCHS Data Brief October 2008

6. R.S. Gupta, et al, "Understanding the prevalence of childhood food allergy in the United States" Pediatrics (July, 2011). This study indicates that in 2010 there were 2% - 2.8% or 1.5 to 2 million peanut allergic children in the US which is a significant increase from a 2008 study (Sicherer) in which 1.4% children were found to be peanut allergic.

7. A. W. Taylor-Robinson, “Multiple vaccination effects on atopy,” Allergy, 54 (April 1999): 398–399.

8. Discovery Health show called Health on the Line Episode 1014 "Allergic Disease" (Nov., 2001)

9. D. O’Hagan (ed.), “Induction of Allergy to Food Proteins,” and “Real and Theoretical Risks of Vaccine Adjuvants,” Vaccine Adjuvants (NJ, Humana Press, 2000) 10 & 32.

M.R. Nelson, et al., “Anaphylaxis complicating routine childhood immunization: haemophilus influenza b conjugated vaccine,” Pediatric Asthma, Allergy & Immunology, 14, 4 (Dec. 2000): 315-321.

U. Kosecka, et al. “Pertussis adjuvant prolongs intestinal hypersensitivity, “ International Archives of Allergy & Immunology, 119, 3 (July, 1999): 205-11.

Nakayama T, Aizawa C, Kuno-Sakai H. “A clinical analysis of gelatin allergy and determination of its causal relationship to the previous administration of gelatin-containing acellular pertussis vaccine combined with diphtheria and tetanus toxoids,” Journal of Allergy & Clinical Immunolology (Feb., 1999): 321-5.

10. The PENTA Project

If you found this article interesting, you will find many more articles on peanut and tree-nut allergy here, and reports of research into the conditions here.
You can also find articles on anaphylaxis here, cow's milk allergies here, egg allergy here, histamine intolerance here and articles on a wide range of other allergic and intolerance reactions to a wide range of other foods here.


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