“My tongue, mouth, and throat are itchy after eating fresh fruits and vegetables” is a common comment at Rocky Mountain Allergy. Developing these symptoms after eating fresh fruits and vegetables occurs with some individuals with severe hay fever. That’s not to say that everyone with pollen allergies has oral allergy syndrome. A person may sneeze all spring long and not have any obvious food sensitivities. This condition is called Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS) or Type II Food Allergy.
Fruits and Vegetables have proteins that closely resemble the proteins pollens contain. When the body detects these proteins it can become confused and set off an allergic reaction, which is when the itchy tongue, mouth, and throat develop.
Most of the time, individuals who suffer from OAS can have cooked or processed fruits and veggies without developing any reactions. When the foods are cooked or processed the proteins in the food changes and thus no longer appear like proteins found in pollens.
Due to the fact that Oral Allergy Syndrome can cause anaphylaxis, a life-threatening reaction that may include blocked airways, low blood pressure, anxiety, vomiting and diarrhea, most individuals strictly avoid fresh fruits and veggies. The most severe reactions require the use of an injection of epinephrine to subside, which is why many people with food allergies carry auto-injectors for emergencies.Other individuals have started allergy shots to relieve the symptoms. Allergy shots can change the bodies perspective and the body no longer perceives the pollen and its protein as foreign, so the body doesn’t cause an allergic response. Once the body no longer sees pollen as foreign, then the body will not see the fruits and vegetables protein as foreign either.
Contact Rocky Mountain Allergy if you have any questions regarding allergies or Oral Allergy Syndrome. Call us at 801-775-9800.