Nightly News | May 08, 2011
>>> important health news. a new study to be published in the journal pediatrics will show a big increase in the number of children who suffer from food allergies . some of them can be life threatening, including severe peanut allergies . nbc's kerry sanders has more.
>> reporter: in the shadows of colorado's pike's peak, 6-year-old lily martin learns math with her first grade classmates. but lily is different from her friends. she carries a life saving viing syringe with her everywhere she goes. what could happen if you had a peanut?
>> i would throw up.
>> reporter: her throat would swell up and possibly choke her to death, says her doctor. like 9-year-old nathan walters from spokane who died after a peanut exposure while on a field trip . or 14-year-old anna in a coma after eating cereal she didn't know contained peanuts. a study found 1 in 12 children have food allergies , almost twice as many as initially thought. 40% of those with allergies have a life threatening condition.
>> say aww.
>> reporter: at lily's once a year allergy tests, a pinprick with a microscopic droplet of peanut extract turns into a hive.
>> yeah. she's still allergic to peanuts.
>> reporter: in colorado springs to keep lil safe from peanuts, everyone, even visitors, washes their hands when entering the classroom.
>> we are a peanut free environment.
>> reporter: not every community is so accommodating. in edgewater florida, there's anger that so many students had to rinse their mouths and wash their hands repeatedly for just one child with an allergy. back at lily's school, kids still bring their favorite things. lily and her friends eat their lunch at the same time. but over in the allergy free zone . separate but equal . kerry sanders , nbc news, colorado springs .