Sneezing in the Spotlight: Grin and Bear It?

Her music is rife with animal imagery, but free-roaming animals might pose a problem to Case's forest fantasy because she is allergic to cats.

"I'm both a dog and a cat person, but I've just become allergic to cats in the last five years."

As a solo artist, Case has released seven well-received albums of alternative rock, tinged with country. She's known for her independent spirit, but she is also a member of the Canadian band New Pornographers.

Alex Kapranos

Most people know Alex Kapranos as the lead singer of the rock band Franz Ferdinand, but he's also an exotic foodie. His book about the unusual delicacies that he has eaten on tour includes bull testicles from Argentina and fish brain bread from Finland

Yet for all his daring, there's one food Kapranos won't allow near his lips -- peanut butter, or anything else made from peanuts. He's severely allergic, and has said that he has learned how to ask whether dishes contain any peanuts at all in a multitude of languages.

Peanuts, actually legumes, belong to the same family as alfalfa, clover, peas and lentils.

According to the Mayo Clinic, peanut allergies often appear in the first years of life. And unlike other food allergies, most kids don't outgrow them as they get older.

Symptoms can include mild skin and throat irritations, but some people can experience anaphylactic shock after ingesting the legume.

The National Institute of Health says each year about 150 Americans die from food-induced anaphylaxis. The most severe kind of anaphylaxis is associated with a sudden and dramatic drop in blood pressure and swelling of the bronchial tubes.


Kelis, a Grammy-nominated R&B artist with hit singles such as "Bossy" and "Milkshake," is assertive when it comes to her lyrics. But the singer has failed to be up-front about her allergies in the past.

According to British newspaper The Sun, Kelis, who has a nut allergy, was eating at a restaurant in Zurich, Switzerland, and had an allergic reaction and began to choke.

A friend said "her face went red and puffy and she started spluttering for air. It's dreadful to think what could have happened -– people can be killed by bad reactions to nuts."

To date, there have been no media reports of Kelis having a milk allergy.

Nicolette Sheridan

Nicollette Sheridan, 44, plays Edie Britt, a conniving housewife, on ABC's "Desperate Housewives." But Sheridan may need to take a break from the perfect flowers on Wisteria Lane, the idyllic suburban street where she and the rest of the housewives live, because of her allergies.

Sheridan reportedly referred to herself as a "Benadrylhead" because the flowers on set were causing her allergies to act up.

"When those exposures happen, you bypass the first principle, which is to try to avoid those environmental exposures," UCLA's Riedl said. "It is bothersome for people who have to be in the spotlight."

Clay Aiken

Clay Aiken may have the pipes to belt out tunes on Broadway, but his sensitive side comes out often, especially when it comes to food.

The "American Idol" runnerup is allergic to coffee, chocolate, mint, mushrooms, shellfish and nuts.

"I was on a flight one time and the flight attendants were passing out bowls of warm mixed nuts," Aiken said in Starpulse, an online entertainment magazine. "We said 'no' to it, and they wanted to take a picture later and we all got together for a picture and one of their hands touched mine and I had a big welt on my hand."

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