Amish children raised on rural farms in northern Indiana suffer from asthma and allergies less often even than Swiss farm kids, according to a new study.
The researchers surveyed 157 Amish families, about 3,000 Swiss farming families, and close to 11,000 Swiss families who did not live on a farm — all with children between the ages of six and 12.
They found that just five per cent of Amish kids had been diagnosed with asthma, compared to 6.8 per cent of Swiss farm kids and 11.2 per cent of the other Swiss children.
Similarly, among 138 Amish kids given a skin-prick test to determine whether they were predisposed to having allergies, only 10 kids — or seven per cent — had a positive response.
In comparison, 25 per cent of the farm-raised Swiss kids and 44 per cent of the other Swiss children had a positive test, the researchers report in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.