The Consumer Education Project of Milk SA

Is there a link between dairy use and allergic rhinitis?

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There is no link between dairy and rhinitis ( runny , itchy nose),  except in the case of a cow’s milk allergy. Rhinitis is usually caused by other allergens (dust mites, animal dander, pollen).

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Symptoms of rhinitis, such as a runny or itchy nose, can occur in individuals who are allergic to cow’s milk. However, cow’s milk allergy affects less than 2% of children (with most outgrowing the allergy before the age of five years) and the condition is even more rare in adults (only 0.1–0.5% adults affected). Most cases of allergic rhinitis are related to airborne allergens such as dust mites, animal dander and pollen.

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