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New Allergies to Fruit Can Develop in Pollen Allergies

By Elaine Moore on 2/1/2016

In a Dec 10, 2015 Medscape article, Oral Allergy Syndrome: When an Apple a Day is Not Advised, Gary Stadtmauer, MD, describes the association between various pollen and food allergies. 

While people with latex allergies have long been told of their likelihood of reacting to bananas, avocados, kiwi, and chestnuts, I had no idea that the anaphylactic reactions I've had after eating celery had anything to do with my allergies to birch pollen.  Now I know that in oral allergy syndrome (OAS), which is more commonly known as pollen-fruit allergy syndrome, the immunoglobulin E (IgE) mediated hypersensitivity to an environmental allergen is the cause of my unusual celery allergy. Of particular interest to those of us with autoimmune thyroid disorders, a rise in IgE is associated with a worsening of symptoms and the initial triggering of autoimmune disease.

Having tested positive for all the foods listed below I also see how they follow specific patterns since I also have all the corresponding pollen allergies.

Birch Pollen= carrots, celery, fresh fruit (apples, pears, peaches, etc.), parsnips, hazelnuts, potatoes, soy, and almond

Grass Pollen= kiwi, tomatoes

Ragweed= bananas and melons (cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon)

Bottom Line: Patients with autoimmune disorders frequently have allergies. Thyroid patients with persistently high levels of thyroid antibodies or Graves' patients who relapse often might want to investigate the possibility that common foods are the culprit.  A blood test showing a high level of IgE antibodies and further allergy testing may also be of benefit.

food allergies
oral allergy syndrome

Graves' Disease and Autoimmune Disease Education
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