MCLEAN, Va., March 24 (UPI) -- About 1.5 percent of U.S. children are allergic to eggs but families can use egg substitutes for Easter and Passover traditions, an allergy specialist says.
Nancy Sander, president and founder of Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers of Asthmatics, said it is fairly easy to follow Easter and Passover traditions without the threat of egg exposure.
"A little planning and creative thinking is what's required to have a fun and tasty celebration," Sander said in a statement.
She said it is OK for allergic children to color East eggs, since touching the hard shell poses no threat.
Sander said families can use a plastic eggs instead of a hard-boiled egg on a Seder plate, and plastic eggs cane be filled with toys, money, stickers or candy for egg hunts. Plastic eggs can substitute for the real thing in "egg in a spoon" races.
When cooking, instead of using eggs, Sander said it's OK to use several substitute mixtures -- 1 1/2 tablespoons water, 1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil and 1 teaspoon of baking powder; 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon vinegar; 1 teaspoon apricot puree; or 1 packet of plain gelatin mixed with 2 tablespoons of warm water.
"Easter and Passover celebrations should be fun and inclusive," Sander said. "But everyone with life-threatening food allergies should be prepared for the unexpected accidental exposure. Preparation includes always carrying two doses of your prescribed epinephrine auto-injector and knowing what the signs and symptoms are of an anaphylactic reaction."