Are Egg Substitutes Safe if You Have an Egg Allergy?

Vegan Egg Replacers Safer, While Egg Substitutes May Contain Eggs

Egg Allergy
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Do you wonder if egg substitutes are safe if you have an egg allergy? Don't assume that it's safe unless you carefully read the label. Egg substitutes may contain eggs, while egg replacer products may be egg-free. If you have an egg allergy, you will need to take care and look for egg alternatives labeled as vegan or egg-free to ensure they don't contain eggs.

Egg Substitutes May Contain Eggs

Low-cholesterol liquid egg substitutes sold in grocery store dairy coolers are made from eggs.

The following commercial products all contain eggs and are not safe for people with egg allergies:

  • Egg Beaters
  • Bay Valley Foods Second Nature Egg Substitute
  • Generic liquid egg substitutes sold in cartons
  • Powdered egg white products

Egg Replacer Products Are Safe Alternatives

However, there are special egg replacer products that do not contain eggs. They are often marketed as vegan egg substitutes and are usually sold in a powdered form. They are useful for baking, but cannot be used to substitute for eggs in foods like quiche.

Commercial Egg Replacers That Are Egg-Free

  • Bob's Red Mill Egg Replacer
  • Ener-G Egg Replacer
  • PaneRiso Foods Egg Replacer

Always check the ingredients on the package label before buying a product sold as an egg substitute or replacer to make sure that the product is completely egg-free. Many of these products contain soy, dairy, or other big eight food allergens.

Vegan means that it contains no animal products, which includes eggs and dairy ingredients.

It is different from vegetarian, which might contain these as they are not meat, although they are animal products.

Hidden Eggs

In addition to avoiding the obvious (such as omelets, quiches, custards, etc.) those allergic to eggs, must be informed about hidden eggs in other food products like bread, pastries, crackers, cereals, noodles and others.

Here is another case where close scrutiny of package labeling is imperative.

The federal Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) requires that all packaged food products sold in the U.S. that contain egg as an ingredient must list the word “Egg” on the label.

Other ingredients that indicate eggs are in the product include albumin, albumen, globulin, lysozyme, lecithin, livetin, vitellin, and any ingredients starting with "ova" or "ovo."

Egg-Free Recipes

Not all recipes require eggs or egg replacements to taste good. Learn how to make egg-free cakes.

Egg Allergy Symptoms

Food allergies expert Jill Castle, says, "Egg allergy is one of the most common food allergies in children, coming in second to milk allergy."

Symptoms, she says, may include:

  • Skin reactions such as rash, hives or eczema.
  • Allergic conjunctivitis (itchy, red, watery eyes).
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, stomach pain, vomiting, or diarrhea.
  • Airway symptoms including wheezing, coughing, or a runny nose.
  • Swelling, also known as angioedema, of the lips, tongue, or face.
  • Severe reactions, called anaphylaxis, may occur, causing multiple organ systems to be involved. Anaphylaxis is an emergency and requires immediate medical treatment.

    To prevent an allergic reaction to egg, all individuals with egg allergy should avoid all eggs and products made with eggs.

    Sources:

    Egg Allergy. Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/egg-allergy/basics/definition/con-20032721

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