Food allergies have risen dramatically and with the cause uncertain research is still desperately needed.

Evidence points in numerous directions and identifying causes as well as allergic triggers can be very difficult.

One thing is definite: allergies are on the rise. More and more of us, particularly children, are suffering from food allergies.

One area of concern has been drinking water - more specifically the chemicals that can be present in it.

While theories abound, concern is often directed at the amount of processed food consumed in modern society and the increased exposure to chemicals.

Are chemicals in water affecting allergies?

Chemicals are everywhere - sprayed onto the food we eat, in our cleaning products, cosmetics and in our drinking water.

While there is no concrete proof of any connection between food allergies and chemicals, concerns have been raised and studies have highlighted a link between the presence of chemicals, usually chlorine, found in drinking water and the incidence of food allergies.

A research project by the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York found that the chance of having a food allergy was 80 per cent higher in people with high levels of dichlorophenol in their urine as opposed to those with low levels.

Dichlorophenol can be a by-product of chlorinating water as it reacts with any organic matter found in the water. It is also used as a herbicide and as such can be found on fruit and vegetables; these agricultural chemicals can also leech into the water system through run-off.

While chlorine will be added to drinking water after treatment to minimise the risk of reacting to create dichlorophenol, the wise advice concerning chemicals is to avoid them wherever possible.

Take control with a water filter

Many chemicals have been identified as hormone disruptors, which interfere with the body's immune system. As allergic reactions are an immune response triggered by it wrongly identifying food as an attacker this link is certainly worth bearing in mind when considering your lifestyle.

Chlorine is recognised as an irritant and can as a result worsen symptoms linked to allergic reactions, such as asthma and eczema.

With allergies having risen by up to 20 per cent with no identifiable cause, it is time to make decisions for our own wellbeing.

A Doulton water filter will remove chlorine allowing your family to enjoy chemical-free drinking water on tap.

Doulton also offers water filtration solutions that target pesticides and herbicides.

Don't leave your health to chance. If you are concerned about the effect of drinking water on food allergies use a water filter.

Daniel Berko