MT Ghozali is a researcher and lecturer of pharmaceutical sciences with extensive experience in patient education.
Allergic to Pineapple?
Imagine you are sitting outside, enjoying a delicious slice of pineapple. When all of a sudden, your mouth begins to burn. What would you do?
Whether or not you want to believe it, this response is typical. However, in certain instances, it might be due to an allergy, sensitivity, or intolerance to pineapple.
Pineapple allergy is not widely reported; however, it is a potential risk factor that should be considered. It is very uncommon for people to experience hypersensitivity reactions while consuming other fruits, notably apples, stone fruits, and bananas.
Understanding Your Pineapple Allergy
Pineapple is one of the most unusual triggers of allergic reactions and sensitivity reactions in people who eat certain foods.
It is because a genuine pineapple allergy is infamous for having cross-reactivity features with various foods, making it particularly challenging to detect and manage.
People allergic to pineapples might have a wide variety of symptoms and responses.
However, pineapple allergies are not as common as allergies to other kinds of foods. Nevertheless, suppose you feel that you have a pineapple allergy.
In that case, it is suggested that you seek the advice of an allergist.
Pineapple Allergy Symptoms
You may experience the symptoms of a pineapple allergy as soon as you come into contact with the fruit. Still, it is also possible that the symptoms won't develop for many hours.
The earliest signs of an allergic response are frequently severe itching and the appearance of hives. After that, you could break out in hives in one or more locations on your body.
It's also possible that you'll experience digestive problems, such as cramping in the stomach, nausea, and diarrhea. Your body is attempting to rid itself of the allergen, and you are experiencing stomach problems.
Symptoms of an allergy to pineapple might include the following in addition to stomach issues:
- Swelling of the mouth, tongue, and throat in addition to the face and lips.
- A hard time breathing.
- A reddening of the face.
- Severe itching or the development of hives.
- Sinus congestion.
- An aftertaste similar to metal in the mouth.
- Passing out.
- Anaphylactic shock – a life-threatening condition.
The onset of anaphylaxis is considered a medical emergency. Therefore, if you are having trouble breathing or if you fear you may be going into anaphylactic shock, you should seek medical assistance as soon as possible.
Pineapple Allergy and Latex Fruit Syndrome
Your pineapple allergy may be caused by the natural latex in the fruit. This phenomenon, sometimes referred to as the latex-fruit syndrome, is the primary reason pineapple is associated with many cross-reactive foods that might cause similar allergic reactions.
What Causes Pineapple Allergy?
Pineapples contain bromelain, which is a known allergen. For those who are allergic to pineapple (and other foods containing bromelain), eating these foods causes their bodies to generate histamines in an attempt to combat the perceived threat posed by the bromelain.
Allergic reactions, such as hives, itching, swelling, trouble breathing, and even anaphylaxis, can result from the bloodstream's release of histamines.
Pineapples have not only bromelain but also something called profilin. The allergen profilin plays a crucial role in mediating IgE cross-reactivity between exotic fruits like pineapple and pollen, which can trigger allergic reactions in certain people.
An individual with a pineapple allergy may also react to other cross-reactive foods and substances due to this agent, which adds to the complexity of the allergic reaction.
When to See a GP
Consult your GPs if you think you may be allergic to pineapple. They may suggest an OTC antihistamine like diphenhydramine to help with your symptoms (Benadryl).
If you have had an anaphylactic response, your doctor will give you an EpiPen to use in the event of another allergic reaction.
If your symptoms persist or worsen, you should seek medical attention immediately. Get in touch with the emergency services in your area or arrange for transportation to the nearest hospital.
How to Treat Pineapple Allergy Symptoms
The following are some of the most commonly used treatments for pineapple allergy:
|Treatment Options||How Does It Work?|
Antihistamines alleviate pineapple allergy symptoms by preventing the body's production of histamine. Over-the-counter and prescription antihistamines are available. Cetirizine, Loratadine, and Diphenhydramine are examples.
Topical steroids operate by lowering inflammation and edema. The severity of the allergic response determines the type. Low-potency steroids may work for moderate reactions. Higher-potency steroids may be needed for severe responses.
Epinephrine treats severe pineapple allergies. Severe reactions require epinephrine injections and hospitalization. In addition, Epinephrine relieves anaphylactic symptoms, including trouble breathing and nausea. In case of intense response, always carry your epinephrine auto-injector.
Calamine lotion relieves pineapple allergy itching and redness. This popular lotion protects the skin by building a barrier on its surface. In addition, its cooling action soothes irritation.
Corticosteroids diminish lung and airway inflammation. This makes breathing easier and prevents asthma attacks. Your doctor may prescribe a corticosteroid inhaler or nebulizer solution if you're allergic to pineapple and have asthma.
Bronchodilators expand the airways to reduce pineapple-induced asthma symptoms. Your doctor will help you choose the right bronchodilator.
Ketotifen treats pineapple-induced conjunctivitis (eye irritation). This drug blocks histamine, which produces allergic symptoms. Ketotifen is a twice-daily solution.
Olopatadine eye drops relieve allergic conjunctivitis-related irritation (pink eye). This drug treats eye irritation or redness from pollen, ragweed, grass, animal hair, or dander. It prevents the effects of inflammatory chemicals (e.g., histamine) generated by eye cells and causing allergic responses.
Levocabastine blocks histamine, which is produced in reaction to allergens. This reduces irritation, redness, and watery eyes from allergic conjunctivitis. Solution-form levocabastine is available.
Desensitization is a sort of long-term immunotherapy. Small quantities of your allergen, such as pineapple, are injected regularly. This helps your body acquire a tolerance to the allergen, reducing discomfort.
Once a week for several months, allergy injections are gradually reduced over the following few years. Desensitization might take 3-5 years.
Avoiding pineapple and its products (canned fruit salad or cocktail, salsa, rum, jam, fruitcake, fruit punch, alcoholic beverages, candies, etc.) is the simplest protective method against allergic reactions.
You should always read the labels of the processed goods you buy to see whether they include any pineapple, and if they do, you should avoid eating them.
You should also be wary of anything that claims to have "natural flavors" or "fruit punch" in the ingredient list since this might mean that it contains pineapple juice.
If you have a pineapple allergy, you must inquire about the ingredients in meals before ordering them.
According to the findings of one study, after consuming pineapple, 20 of the 32 participants who tested positive for a pineapple allergy went into anaphylactic shock.
Your GPs may confirm a pineapple allergy through a blood or skin test. And it's important to tell them exactly what happened.
They may also recommend that you avoid pineapple altogether, and they might also prescribe antihistamines or an EpiPen as a precaution.
Unless your GPs indicate otherwise, avoid pineapple and any product containing the fruit! If you eliminate your exposure to the fruit, you won't experience any symptoms.
This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2022 Dr apt MT Ghozali