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Cross Reactions

Cross Reactions

Quote of the Month
The pollen counts are so high that junkies are trying to convert their meth back into Sudafed

Last month I talked about foods high in histamine which may make seasonal allergies worse.

But have any of you heard of the term cross-reactions? Some of you may be more familiar with the term oral allergy syndrome.
Cross-reactions happen because some of the same proteins are present in both pollens AND foods.  For example, the protein structure between birch pollen and pears are close enough that the immune system for some of us can’t tell the difference.  Therefore, the antibodies that our system produces to protect against the birch will also trigger a response to the pear.  If your body is under any kind of stress (physical, emotional or otherwise), it will be even more on guard!

Here are 4 of the symptoms associated with oral allergy syndrome:

  • sneezing
  • runny nose
  • itching and burning of the lips, mouth and throat
  • watery itchy eyes

Here are 5 of the primary pollens that have been found to cross-react to foods:

  • Birch
  • Ragweed
  • Grass
  • Mugwort
  • Alder
…and here’s a VERY condensed list of the foods that can cross-react:

  • apple
  • pear
  • plum
  • melon
  • carrot
  • potato
  • banana
  • zucchini
  • sunflower
  • walnut
  • cucumber
By the way, if you have allergies, you are stressed!
Stay tuned, as next time I’m going to talk about WHY we react to pollens in the first place!

Did You Know?

  • Dr Oz has a detailed chart you can check out illustrating cross-reactions for each pollen.
  • Another list can be found at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency
  • Not all reactions to fruit and vegetables are associated with oral allergy syndrome
  • The majority of reactions come from eating the offending foods uncooked