From a botanical point of view, peanuts are legumes (or pulses), like lentils or soya, not nuts. They provide high-value protein and valuable fatty acids. Their content of magnesium, potassium, fluoride, vitamin E and folic acid make them one of the most important sources of vitamins and minerals.
Peanuts have very strong allergens. Peanut allergy is one of the most dangerous food allergies, because even the tiniest amount eaten (one microgram), such as traces, can trigger major health problems. Symptoms can include hives, breathing difficulties, watery eyes, circulatory problems, nausea and vomiting, through to severe anaphylactic shock.
It is diagnosed on the basis of a dietary and symptom log as well as skin examinations and blood tests. If an allergy is diagnosed, the sufferer must completely avoid peanuts, peanut oil and foods that contain peanuts. A nutritionist specialising in allergies will support the nutritional treatment and help in the choice of suitable foods.