What Causes a New Pineapple Allergy?

Written by maura wolf
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What Causes a New Pineapple Allergy?
Eating pineapple may cause an allergic reaction. (pineapple image by Maria Brzostowska from Fotolia.com)

Pineapple allergies are negative reactions to any part of the pineapple and to foods or supplements containing pineapple. An allergic reaction to pineapple can come on suddenly and may lead to rashes, itchy skin or diarrhoea. Allergies can be triggered by eating pineapple or coming in contact with pineapple in any way. A new pineapple allergy may be triggered by overexposure to the fruit.

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Immune Response

A pineapple allergy occurs when the body's immune system reacts to something in the pineapple that it considers harmful. The immune system produces both an antibody and histamine, a combination that can cause symptoms ranging from anaphylaxis to asthma, abdominal distress, eczema or headaches.

Excessive Exposure

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, new allergies can develop from excessive exposure to a food. However, you cannot predict what amount of a substance will cause your system to reach that critical point at which it has been overexposed to a food such as pineapple. When that happens, a new, unexpected allergic reaction might suddenly occur.

Genetic Sensitivity

Some individuals have a genetic sensitivity to allergens found in certain substances. If you have a family history of allergies, your risk escalates for suffering from food allergies.

Latex-fruit Syndrome

Researchers Brehler, Theissen, Mohr and Luger at the University of Münster, Germany, studied a condition called ”Latex-fruit syndrome," which revealed that cross-reactivity among latex, pineapple and other foods occurs “due to cross-reactive allergens.”

Scientists at the Guthrie Research Institute in Pennsylvania suggest that when tropical foods trigger Oral Allergy Syndrome, a latex allergy may be the source of the problem.

Oral Allergy Syndrome

Cross-reactivity between "airborne pollen proteins…with similar proteins that are found in various fresh fruits and vegetables,” including pineapple, can cause Oral Allergy Syndrome, which, according to Medicalnewstoday.com, may occur in 33 per cent of individuals with seasonal allergies. Symptoms affect the mouth, tongue and throat and include itchiness, tingling and swelling immediately after eating fresh fruits or vegetables. Reactions may begin with one type of food, with others developing later. Many kinds of pollen, such as alder, birch, grass, mugwort and ragweed, cross-react with pineapple to cause Oral Allergy Syndrome, because exotic or tropical fruits such as banana and pineapple contain a protein called profilin that produces allergy-causing antibodies.

Reaction to Bromelain

Pineapples contain bromelain that, in addition to causing allergic reactions, may affect the blood's ability to clot. Certain people, including pregnant women and individuals with high blood pressure, haemophilia and liver or kidney disease should not consume bromelain and should probably avoid pineapple.

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