Food allergies can be terrifying. Not only do they make you feel uneasy but also keep you from eating foods that everyone else can enjoy but you. Multiple food allergies just make it all the more difficult to maintain a diet or dine out with friends. Wondering how your body is different from others? Find out what happens in food allergies.
Why You Experience Food Allergies
The role of the immune system is to protect the body cells from disease-causing foreign invaders. It keeps your body healthy and free from infections. In a similar manner, you experience an allergic reaction to a particular food because the immune system overreacts to the food or an ingredient in the food and identifies it as a danger, triggering a protecting response that appears as the reaction.
Most Common Foods Causing Food Allergies
While any food can cause an allergic reaction, these 8 types of foods account for 90 percent of the allergic reactions, from children to adults:
- Tree nuts
Major Symptoms Of Food Allergies
When a specific food is not suitable for your consumption, your body alerts you via mild-to-severe symptoms. The following symptoms should not be ignored if you experience them within a few minutes to several hours after eating a particular food.
1. Rashes, Redness, And Itchy Skin
One of the first allergic reactions to a particular food is seen either as a mild rash on the skin or even redness. In some cases, these are accompanied by an itchy or burning sensation on the skin. It is mostly observed on the hands, feet, and joints. So, if you ever find yourself feeling itchy after eating, it is most likely an allergic reaction. Avoiding the foods that may have caused the skin changes is an effective way to avoid future allergies affecting the skin.
2. Funny Sensations In Your Mouth
Another common allergic reaction to a food is funny sensations in the mouth. The sensations might be an itchy mouth, scratchy throat, or swelling of the lips, mouth, tongue, and throat. Generally, these do not progress to other parts of the body. Some people may experience this after eating raw fruits and vegetables while others may find similar signs after having tree nuts. This is also known as oral allergy syndrome.1
3. Frequent Bathroom Visits
If you feel sick in the stomach, feel an ache in your tummy, or end up visiting the bathroom way too frequently, you could be experiencing an allergic reaction. Although food poisoning and food intolerance have similar symptoms, it to consider allergic reaction as a possibility, too. To get the right diagnosis, discuss the signs with a healthcare professional.
4. Tightness In The Chest
Are you not able to swallow food easily? Finding it difficult to catch a breath? Experiencing a tightness in the chest with some level of discomfort? You are most likely experiencing an allergic reaction called eosinophilic esophagitis (EOE). EOE occurs because of an inflammation of the esophagus (the tube that carries food down to the stomach) and varies with age. Infants and toddlers with EOE tend to refuse to eat while school children have stomach pain or trouble swallowing food.2
5. A Sudden Drop In Pulse Rate
A drastic dip in blood pressure can be a sign of an allergic reaction. However, unless you are measuring your pressure at the table, you will not be able to figure out the dip. There are different ways your body may show these signs – you may feel dizzy or lightheaded and, in serious cases, you may even pass out.3
Eliminating foods or food products that cause discomfort or irritation is the best way to get rid of a food allergy. Paying attention to these mild symptoms can also prevent the life-threatening allergic reaction anaphylaxis. Living with food allergies can be stressful, but don’t let it take control of your life. Be mindful of what you eat and stay healthy.