What Are The Signs Of Avocado Allergy?


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Signs Of Avocado Allergy

We’ve all grown up hearing an apple a day can keep the doctor away. But it looks like avocado, a nutrient-rich fruit, scores a point over apple in keeping us hale. Some of you may beg to differ for it is possible to be allergic to avocado. If you experience any form of discomfort after eating the fruit, the chances are that you’re allergic to the fruit.

Signs of Avocado Allergy

Stomach upset or nausea after eating avocados is the first sign of allergy. Other symptoms that you may experience include runny nose, sneezing, headache, and reddened, itchy skin, teary eyes, sore throat or hoarse voice, stomach cramps, chest tightness, wheezing, or shortness of breath. In the worst case, your respiratory tract could become swollen and you may not be able to breathe at all. This condition is known as asphyxiation. These allergic relations can be narrowed down to two possible causes—latex-fruit syndrome and birch-pollen allergy.1

Latex-Fruit Syndrome

Say you are sensitive to a particular allergen. When you eat or come into contact with another substance that has a similar chemical structure as that allergen, you will experience a similar allergic reaction because your immune system cannot distinguish between the two sources. This is called cross-reactivity or cross-sensitization. Researchers have found that avocados—and several other fruits like banana or kiwis—contain a protein similar to the latex allergen hevein. 2So if you are latex sensitive, your body has the same immune response to avocado as it has to latex. This type of allergy is called the latex-fruit syndrome. Avocado allergy is significant because it is found in at least 40 percent of latex-allergic individuals. Avocado allergy is significant because it is found in at least 40% of latex-allergic individuals.

The allergy symptoms usually appear rather quickly but can sometimes manifest an hour or more later. Stomach discomfort and gastrointestinal problems are usually associated with this allergy. But for some, the symptoms may not be as mild as that. If you are hypersensitive to latex, eating an avocado might give you anaphylactic shock.

Adults are not the only ones who are diagnosed with avocado allergy; even infants are known to show intolerance to avocado. As a parent, you should be wary of baby food contents, especially if your baby has already been diagnosed with latex allergy.

Birch Pollen Allergy

Stomach ache or other gastrointestinal disturbances are not the only ill effects of avocado. Birch pollen allergy, commonly known as oral allergy syndrome, which is the cross-reactivity between birch pollen and certain foods, can lead to symptoms like itching, tingling, and swelling, mostly in the mouth, lips, and throat. This allergic reaction occurs when certain cross-reactive fruits and vegetables come in contact with the mouth or throat. The symptoms may appear immediately after eating these fresh fruits or vegetables or sometimes more than an hour later. Though considered a mild form of food allergy, it can sometimes cause a severe throat swelling, leading to difficulty swallowing or breathing. 34

Histamines In Avocados

Avocados are a rich source of histamines, a type of natural amines (a derivative of ammonia) found in foods and in our body that can trigger allergic reaction. This is because when an allergen enters our body, histamine is released to force it out. The histamine is what causes the symptoms we associate with allergy. When foods rich in histamine enter the body, they trigger similar effects. The skin rashes and hives that you might experience after eating an avocado can be attributed to the histamines. If you are already a victim of eczema, avocado will worsen it. These welts can cause itching or may hurt when touched, but do not scratch, rub, or stroke the affected area.5

Treatment For Avocado Allergy

With proper care, the symptoms of avocado allergy can be mitigated. It is best to avoid the fruit if you are allergic to it. Be warned–avocados are not restricted to o guacamole or California rolls. You could find them in dishes where avocados might not seem like a likely ingredient. It can be used to add creaminess to bread spreads or as a substitute in vegan recipes and baked goods. Avocados may also be used in shampoos and body lotions. Check the ingredients in your personal care products for the presence of avocados to avoid them. If you must have it, cook it properly before consuming it. Studies show that the allergic protein gets destroyed on heating.6

If you’ve consumed it by mistake and undergoing an attack, drink lots of water to wash the allergen out of your body. Here are a few folk remedies that can make you feel better:
Have fresh pomegranate or sugarcane to treat vomiting and nausea.7

If you have trouble breathing, or have other respiratory symptoms, drink tomato soup with freshly chopped ginger and lemon juice.

If it’s severe, please consult a doctor and see if you should take anti-histamine tablets or an epinephrine injection.

References   [ + ]

1.Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS). Accessed August 08, 2016.
2.Chen, Zhiping, Anton Posch, Reinhold Cremer, Monika Raulf-Heimsoth, and XaverBaur. “Identification of hevein (Hev b 6.02) in Hevea latex as a major cross-reacting allergen with avocado fruit in patients with latex allergy.” Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 102, no. 3 (1998): 476-481.
3.Sowka, Slawomir, Li-Shan Hsieh, Monika Krebitz, Akira Akasawa, Brian M. Martin, David Starrett, Clemens K. Peterbauer, Otto Scheiner, and HeimoBreiteneder. “Identification and cloning of Prs a 1, a 32-kDa endochitinase and major allergen of avocado, and its expression in the yeast Pichiapastoris.” Journal of Biological Chemistry 273, no. 43 (1998): 28091-28097.
4.Wagner, S., and H. Breiteneder. “The latex-fruit syndrome.” Biochemical Society Transactions 30, no. 6 (2002): 935-940.
5.Blanco, C., T. Carrillo, R. Castillo, J. Quiralte, and M. Cuevas. “Avocado hypersensitivity.” Allergy 49, no. 6 (1994): 454-459.
6.Sánchez-Monge, Rosa, Carlos Blanco, AraceliDíazPerales, Carmen Collada, Teresa Carrillo, CiprianoAragoncillo, and Gabriel Salcedo. “Class I chitinases, the panallergens responsible for the latex-fruit syndrome, are induced by ethylene treatment and inactivated by heating.” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 106, no. 1 (2000): 190-195.
7.Panichayupakaranant, P., S. Tewtrakul, and S. Yuenyongsawad. “Antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic activities of standardised pomegranate rind extract.” Food Chemistry 123, no. 2 (2010): 400-403.
CureJoy Editorial

The CureJoy Editorial team digs up credible information from multiple sources, both academic and experiential, to stitch a holistic health perspective on topics that pique our readers' interest.

CureJoy Editorial

The CureJoy Editorial team digs up credible information from multiple sources, both academic and experiential, to stitch a holistic health perspective on topics that pique our readers' interest.