For years, kids with food allergies were told the only option was to keep their child away from the food.

Hopefully that's about to change.

A remarkable program developed by allergists at Mercy Medical Group is working to allow people with food allergies to have more options then being told to "avoid that food and carry an epinephrine device," said Rabeena Inander, head of the allergy and immunology division at Mercy Medical Group. 

She says this program is the first to be rolled out in the region. It's called food oral immunotherapy.

"So our program is designed to help children and adults who have a severe peanut or tree nut allergy," Inander said. 

And it works to desensitize the body to an allergy by slowly ingesting measured amounts of the food.

The first patient in our region is 9-year-old Michael Lee from Natomas. His mom, Geena, says the best thing about the program is that it "melts the paranoia."