Apricots are highly nutritious but can trigger health issues among those with are sensitive to the fruit. Many individuals who are allergic to apricots have other existing fruit or pollen allergies, especially to the birch pollen. Some of the reactions to the fruit are not allergic though but simply indicate an intolerance.
Even though an allergy to apricots are relatively uncommon, there have been reported cases. If allergic to the fruit, the body releases antibodies that react with the fruit. A reaction might occur which results to mouth tingling, hives, swollen lips, face, tongue or throat as well as anaphylaxis.
Is it oral allergy syndrome?
The symptoms of oral allergy syndrome might arise after eating apricots, especially if the individual has birch pollen allergy. The reason is that apricots and birch pollen possess some similar proteins.
The antibodies against the birch pollen might cross-react with the apricot proteins which triggers the symptoms. This can occur abruptly even if the individual has previously consumed apricots without any issues.
The signs generally include irritation and itchiness of the mouth or throat. This reaction typically settles on its own in a few minutes after eating the fruit. It is rare for a reaction to progress to anaphylaxis.
Food intolerance to apricots is different from an allergy to the fruit. Even though gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, stomach pain and nausea are undesirable and cause discomfort, these are indications of intolerance. This condition simply indicates that the body could not properly digest apricots.
What should I do?
If the individual is allergic to apricots, they should be avoided. Carefully check the ingredients of foods being eaten to ensure that apricots are not included.
In some cases, cooking the fruit prevents any symptoms from manifesting since the proteins are altered when heated. A doctor should be consulted before attempting to eat cooked apricots if diagnosed with an allergy.
Risk for anaphylaxis?
An individual who is allergic to apricots might be at risk for a severe and dangerous reaction known as anaphylaxis. The general indications include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Low blood pressure
- Swollen mouth and throat
This reaction is a medical emergency and can be deadly if not promptly treated. If any of these are present, call for emergency assistance. If the doctor prescribed an auto-injectable epinephrine, it should be used as directed.