being bitten by a deer tick/'lone star tick' (named accordingly because of a tiny white marking on its back that looks like a star) and causes the person to become slightly allergic to even anaphylactically allergic to red meat.
"While cases are mostly concentrated in the South in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia, allergy clusters have also cropped up in Pennsylvania and the East Hamptons in New York....." (Click anywhere on this quoted info to view the entire article.)
Now I don't know about any of you guys, but if I were allergic to red meat, I would fall into a severe depression, since I am already limited as it is. As of now, I have to buy ONLY grass-fed meats and 'wild caught' fish because of my soy-allergy reaction to their feed. Not to mention the fact that I do love a medium-rare steak on occasion and can't live without my Pilot Kobe grass-fed beef burgers marinated in my soy-free soy sauce (recipe vlog coming soon)!! According to the articles I've read, the allergy only lasts 3-5 years but may last longer and be more intense the more tick bites you have. Also remember, not all ticks carry the antibodies causing this allergy, just like not all ticks carry Lyme Disease, but precautions should be observed.
One thing that I found interesting while reading some articles on this allergy is that the doctor who discovered it, Dr. Thomas Platts-Mills is the very same doctor who treated me when I was a baby living in Virginia...
Another fact about this allergy? John Grisham, the best-selling author of all the thrillers made into box office hits was diagnosed with this allergy. So yes, it is very real.
So my advice? If you plan on being in the woods in one of the states affected, definitely keep your skin covered and take extra precautions not to get any tick bites! And if you think you may have been affected, see an allergist IMMEDIATELY. Since this is also a pretty recent finding, it is a good idea to notify the doctor of any tick bites you've had.