Normally, the immune system elicits a response for body invaders such as bacteria, toxins, and viruses. But for some people, the immune response is a result of some food substance introduced by ingestion. Many people suffer from food allergies. A food allergy is a very exaggerated response of your immune system brought about by certain food items such as nuts, eggs, milk, and even chocolates. Some symptoms of food allergies are hoarseness of the voice, hives, swelling, wheezing, itching sensation, hard time swallowing, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fainting, runny nose, nausea, nasal congestion, cramps (stomach), and vomiting. Wheezing and difficulty in breathing are caused by the inflammation of the air passages. Difficulty in swallowing and hoarseness of the voice may be brought about by the swelling of the oral cavity and esophageal area.
Believe it or not, there are some people who are allergic to berries. Blueberry allergy is an allergic reaction to blueberries. This is a very specific food allergy that makes those who have it stay away from blueberries and any food item made with blueberries. It is a very disheartening condition because even a touch of blueberries in your food may result to an anaphylactic reaction. When this happens, it could really be dangerous to that person and maybe even fatal. You should be very aware that immediate medical attention should be given when allergic reactions occur. Here are some things that you should consider when a person has blueberry allergy:
1. Mild allergic reaction
When you serve berried at a dinner party, you should ask your guests if they have blueberry allergy first. A mild allergic reaction may occur even when a single blueberry is ingested. Mild allergic reaction symptoms are rashes, diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach cramps. Rashes tell you that there is an elevated histamine reaction. When this happens, anti-histamines should be given. Diarrhea and vomiting happen when the body doesn’t want to accept the blueberries. This reaction also indicates that the blueberries are toxins that are invading the body. The cramping or pain in the stomach tells you that the chemicals in the GIT cannot digest the blueberries at all.
2. Strong allergic reaction
Some people react to blueberries strongly. Blueberry allergy manifests by severe headaches, intense rashes and itching, and massive swelling of the oral lining, throat, and lips. These symptoms happen very fast to some people, that is why their prescription anti-allergy medications should be on-hand all the time. If not, they should be given immediate medical attention in a nearby health facility.
3. Fatal allergic reaction
Blueberry allergy to some can be very fatal. Watch out if there are people experiencing shortness of breath, wheezing, elevated blood pressure, increased heart rate, swelling in the tongue area, fainting, or dizziness. An anaphylactic shock is already taking place when these symptoms appear. When an anaphylactic shock occurs, immediate medical attention should be given or else, the person will have a fatality due to the very violent allergic reaction to blueberries. The elevated blood pressure is brought about by the constriction of the blood vessels, which also leads to the increased heart rate. Fainting or dizziness is brought about by the inefficient blood flow to the brain.
4. Reaction in babies
Blueberry allergy also happens when the baby is given blueberries below six to nine months of age. During this time the baby’s digestive system is still too underdeveloped to have the necessary enzymes to breakdown the blueberries. Thus, the baby experiences stomach pain and vomiting that indicates rejection of the berries. The vomiting and stomach pain experienced by the baby may result to severe dehydration. This condition is called angiodema that manifests through welts or rashes in the subcutaneous area of the skin. These are very sensitive when touched.
It is true that once you have a food allergy, you will have it for life. There is no cure for such a condition. Epinephrine shots can really help the victim of food allergy such as blueberry allergy, to stop the worse allergic reactions. This will enable the patient to get the proper medical attention needed to completely eliminate the symptoms. The licensed medical practitioner should always be the one to carry the emergency epinephrine pens or should instruct the patient very well on how to use it. Constant vigilance should be the attitude towards the management of blueberry allergy. Even if it could be embarrassing at times to always inquire about the food being served or to be too picky when you eat out, you know that you should do it so that your experience will be pleasant.