Tomato Allergy


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tomato-allergyTomato allergies are not as common as other food allergies. Tomatoes are a part of the “nightshade” allergy family. However, those that do have a severe tomato allergy face the  possibility of anaphylactic shock and death.

Allergy or Intolerance

More persons actually have a food intolerance for tomatoes and not a full-blown tomato allergy.  An intolerance for tomatoes usually creates gastrointestinal problems, such as diarrhea, cramps or vomiting.  A protein found in tomatoes is generally what creates the allergic reaction by the body’s immune system. A persons immune protection function see the tomato protein as a toxin and attempts to eliminate it by releasing histamines to kill it.  It is the histamines themselves which create swelling, hives, rashes, headaches, and other symptoms which may even include the constriction of the bronchial tubes. In very severe cases; too many histamines can cause respiratory distress, failure, and even death during an anaphylactic shock.  A tomato allergy can occur in 15-20 minutes and can subside just as quickly if the correct medication is administered.

Many people who have a known tomato allergy can actually tolerate well cooked tomatoes with little or no reaction. Other people report that they can consume low acid tomatoes. However, data shows that all tomatoes are equally acidic and what they are really referring to is the flavanoids that give the taste of acidity.

Note that in both of these cases, a food journal should be kept for a month or more (noting symptoms after meals) to share with the physician if you suspect you may have a tomato allergy. An allergy test done by a qualified allergy doctor is the only accurate way to determine if you truly have a tomato related allergy. Food allergy tests may include various blood tests, skin tests, possible nasal smears, and a full food journal review. They should also consider whether or not your parents have had food allergies.

Here are a few tips for tomato allergy sufferers:

  • There are tomato-free sauces, ketchup, barbecue, and salsa available at certain retailers but are better found by researching online.
  • Take supplements which are known to help allergies. These would include beta carotene,vitamin C, vitamin E, pantothenic acid, glucosamine, and quercitin which is a well known flavonoid. Flavanoids are powerful antioxidants which can reduce inflammation and block the release of histamines.
  • Try making a no tomato ‘pasta sauce’ by adding a lot of olive oil  and add lots of veggies chopped up and spices which can make a great sauce!
  • If ordering out, try a white or pesto base instead of a tomato base. Also, specify no catsup anytime when ordering out.
  • Eat vegetables high in digestive enzymes to assist in the proper digestion. Some food-based enzymes include onions and garlic.

Related Posts:  Food Allergies, Citrus Allergies and Strawberry Allergies.

About the author: Jimmy Don Strongwell operates a organic farm which are known for their great tomatoes and other vegetables in the Canton area of East Texas.

Ferrari eats a tomato

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Trackbacks Comments
  • I have a tomato allergy and found its really hard to cook and eat out without tomato product. Check out my blog, STINKY TOMATO, for recipes and delicious non-tomato substitutes!

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  • Anonymous:

    Tomatoes cause a spike in my blood pressure.

  • jessey:

    I have a serve allergy to tomatoes, so bad in fact that I cannot even smell or eat them raw or cooked. It sometimes feels like my skin is burning and peeling when exposed to cooking tomatoes. I have been pretty much homebound because of the tomatoes that are being cooked in most restaurants. Anyone else have that problem? Why would your skin feel like it’s burning and peeling? I have used so many epi’ s this past year and gone to the er so many times that the Dr even knows why I am there without my chart.

  • admin:

    Jessey,

    We have had some feedback from AllergyReliefExpert.com readers, that they have had less Tomato Allergy symptoms from taking a Digestive Enzyme & Hydrochloric Acid food supplement before consuming tomato based foods. We understand this may be because some people may lack enough enzymes and stomach acids to properly break down the tomato food they consume.

    Hope this tip may help your tomato allergy!

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