1. Health & Lifestyle

Tomato Allergy and How to Cope With It

Tomatoes are a member of the nightshade allergy family and contain a high concentration of salicylate, a natural chemical related to aspirin and a derivative of salicylic acid. Some people are unable to take any amount of salicylate.

Binita Kumari
Although severe responses to tomatoes are rare, they can result in anaphylactic shock and death.
Although severe responses to tomatoes are rare, they can result in anaphylactic shock and death.

Before we talk about tomato allergies, let’s discuss the difference between tomato intolerance and tomato allergy. Here is the difference between the two:

Allergies: Symptoms normally appear shortly after eating the trigger food in any amount. Eating the trigger food might have serious and even life-threatening consequences.

Intolerance: The intensity of the illness is usually proportional to how much of the trigger food is consumed. A tablespoon of tomato sauce, for example, may not make you sick, but a full spaghetti dish will. You're more likely to get sick if you eat a lot of the trigger food.

The majority of people have tomato intolerance rather than a tomato allergy.

Although severe responses to tomatoes are rare, they can result in anaphylactic shock and death.

Many people with a known tomato allergy or intolerance can tolerate well-cooked tomatoes with little or no ill effects.

Tomatoes with a low acid content can be eaten by others.

Tomatoes are a member of the nightshade allergy family and contain a high concentration of salicylate, a natural chemical related to aspirin and a derivative of salicylic acid. Some people are unable to take any amount of salicylate.

Symptoms of Tomato Intolerance:

Any of the following symptoms usually appear many hours to days after consuming the trigger food:

  • Sore throat

  • Temporarily losing one's voice

  • Night Sweats

  • Fever

  • Congestion of the sinuses

  • Illness that is similar to a cold but is not contagious

  • Permanent tonsil swelling (particularly in cases when trigger foods have been eaten on a regular basis throughout one's life)

  • GERD or Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease (because of acidity)

  • Charlie horse/leg cramps

Symptoms of Tomato Allergy:

In most cases, one or more of the following symptoms appear shortly after eating the trigger food:

  • Rashes

  • Tongue, the roof of the mouth, lips, or one side of the face is often swollen

  • Hyperventilation

  • Under-eye puffiness

  • Acid reflux

If you have a tomato allergy or intolerance, you've probably had similar problems and have encountered a variety of these symptoms.

How to Cope with Tomato Intolerance or Allergy:

  • The simplest method to deal with this is to use tomato substitutes in your favorite dishes. 

  • Don't eat most canned soups, restaurant soups, or soups prepared by others unless you're aware of your allergy or intolerance. Tomato products are frequently used in a variety of soup recipes for flavor or consistency. Chicken noodles, New England clam chowder, and split pea and ham soups are all good choices.

  • When ordering meat dishes, exercise utmost caution. Tomatoes or tomato products are frequently used in these dishes to enhance the flavor of sauces or gravies.

  • Order garlic and white wine sauce or Alfredo on any dish that traditionally has tomato sauce in it in Italian restaurants. To make a tomato-flavored pasta sauce at home, use a mild pepper sauce. 

  • Avocado, mashed with a pinch of salt, can be used as a tortilla chip dip in place of salsa.

  • Be careful when eating anything red that you haven't prepared yourself.

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