Practice Paper: Role of the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in the Diagnosis and Management of Food Allergies

Volume 116, Issue 10, Pages 1621-1631 (October 2016)


Incidence of food allergy has increased significantly over the past decade and represents an important health issue for millions of Americans. Diagnosis of IgE-mediated food allergies is sometimes difficult, because blood and skin tests have high rates of false positives, and oral food challenges are uncommon due to the expense and potential for serious reactions. Accurate diagnosis is crucial to avoid unnecessary dietary restriction, especially in children. Because RDNs often work independently, receiving referrals for dietary education and guidance for a patient who is followed by one or several other practitioners, navigating the data available and making the appropriate follow up contact optimizes treatment. The purpose of this paper is to provide guidance to the RDN and NDTR on appropriate and evidence-based nutrition counseling for diagnosis and management of food allergies.

*Please note:

The Academy practice paper on food allergies published in the October 2016 print issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics regrettably contained an error regarding the provisions of specialty infant formula. The erratum explaining this error is available on the Journal's website.

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  • *This paper offers a free CPE opportunity for Academy members.