The nut allergy is one of the most common causes of food allergies. Most people who have a nut allergy are most likely to be allergic to tree nuts and have allergic reactions to peanuts. Various tree nuts include almonds, pecans, walnuts, cashews, and hazelnuts. Peanuts or groundnuts are not nuts, but legumes. These grow underground and are not related to beans or peas at all. People can develop allergies to nuts or any other foods at any age.
Everyone will experience different symptoms with their nut allergy when consuming nuts. Some symptoms may occur within minutes, some may occur a few hours or even a day or so later; this all depends upon the person.
Mild symptoms of a nut allergy include but are not limited to:
- Runny nose or sneezing
- Tingling of lips, tongue or mouthdigestive problems such as stomach cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting
- Itchy skin
Serious Nut Allergy Symptoms
- Swelling of the lips, tongue, throat or face
Those who have a severe nut allergy can quite possibly develop anaphylaxis. Breathing becomes difficult because airways in the lungs are swollen. Most likely, there is a drop in blood pressure and increase of heart rate which obviously contributes to a shock in the system. This is unfortunate; however, for those who possess a severe nut allergy; symptoms can be triggered just from being around or touching a person who has recently eaten nuts. Some may have symptoms from actually being in the same room where nuts are kept.
When a person with a nut allergy comes into contact with nuts; antibodies called IgE are at work. Usually, antibodies exist solely for fighting infections; this is why they are released. Unfortunately, the nut is deemed the enemy; this is what the antibodies are attacking. Your mast cells start to release chemicals such as histamines while inducing symptoms of allergies such as swelling and rash.
There are many methods that can assist a person in revealing if they possess a nut allergy. Blood tests will measure IgE antibodies for certain allergens in your blood. This can quite possibly confirm a diagnosis of a severe food allergy.
Skin prick tests involves introducing different allergens to one’s skin, just to see which will cause an allergic reaction. The recipient should know that only small doses of allergens are given.
The only sure fire way of treating a nut allergy is to avoid nut or products that may contain them. Antihistamine treatments can also be prescribed for those who have only mild reactions.