Some individuals can expect the tingling of the lips and constriction of the chest once they eat an Italian sandwich or pizza. A small percentage of individuals have tomato allergy. Even though most of us are well aware that food allergies are quite common, the symptoms of tomato allergy are not fully known than the other popular food allergies. Understandably, this does not mean that the symptoms are any less severe or less noticeable than the other food allergies.
Food intolerance or food allergy
It is important to recognize the difference between food intolerance and a true food allergy. Always bear in mind that food intolerance is quite common than food allergy. Even though the chemical reaction of the body to the food can cause unpleasant symptoms, food intolerance has less potential for fatality. An actual allergy to tomato is rare and can be caused by a histamine reaction to the protein usually present in the skin, seeds and juice of the tomato.
Observe the symptoms
You have to take note of the symptoms once they occur. The food allergy symptoms typically manifest right after the food is ingested. It is vital that the doctor knows the timetable so that a life-threatening allergic reaction can be ruled out or food intolerance. It is important to take into consideration whether the symptoms worsen with every exposure to the tomatoes.
It is also recommended to connect the symptoms of tomato allergy to other food allergies. You have to take note that the tomato plant is closely related to eggplant, potatoes and tobacco. They are included in the deadly nightshade family and possess the similar structure. Due to the severe nature of a tomato allergy, if an individual is allergic, it is likely that he/she will experience the symptoms after contact with these plants as well.
The individual must avoid fresh tomatoes if he/she experiences swelling or itching around the mouth, diarrhea, hives, vomiting, difficulty breathing or a persistent skin rash. Even though the exact cause is not yet determined, many individuals who have tomato allergy only experience symptoms once they come in contact with the raw fruit.
In some individuals, they can eat processed tomato products such as tomato paste or ketchup without experiencing any reaction.
It is best to schedule an appointment with your doctor for proper food allergy testing. If tomato allergy is suspected, the individual will undergo both the skin prick test and blood testing. During a skin prick test, the doctor will inject a small amount of the food protein to determine if a localized reaction will occur. As for a blood test, it can determine if there is an increase in the IgE antibody in the system.
Important considerations to bear in mind
If the individual only suspects a possible allergy to tomato, it is recommended to avoid tomato until he/she is sure. Always bear in mind that food allergies can increase in terms of severity with every exposure, thus it is best not to take any chances.
Seek immediate emergency care if the individual experiences swelling of the throat and breathing difficulty. These can indicate a severe allergic reaction that is called an anaphylaxis.