“Allergists often see patients with suspected fruit allergies,” says Dr. Farooq, who says there are two main types of allergies: a milder form called pollen fruit syndrome (PFS) and a more severe form. is a lipid transfer protein (LTP) allergy, named after the type of protein in fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains that causes reactions.”
The first, Dr. Farooq said, is a reaction to proteins found in raw fruits, vegetables, some nuts and soybeans, which are similar in structure to those found in certain pollen, such as birch or grass. “When some people with hay fever eat these foods, their immune systems get confused and think they are chewing pollen,” she said. Reactions are usually mild, such as itching of the mouth, lips, or ears, swelling of the lips, slight tightness of the throat, itching, discomfort, or sneezing. “Cooking or canning foods often destroys cross-reactive proteins, so patients who experience reactions when eating peaches are fine eating canned peaches.”
LTP is found in all fruits, nuts, seeds and vegetables. But unlike PFS, cooking the food does not eliminate the allergy, and people with LTP allergies are at risk for more severe allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis.
“At the same time, some foods are notorious for irritating the skin and causing redness, especially in children, including strawberries and tomatoes. This is often mistaken for a food allergy, but these are unlikely to be allergens,” Fa said Dr. Rucker said.
According to the UK, only two percent of people are allergic to fruit, so it’s important to remember the wealth of health benefits of fiber- and vitamin-rich fruit.