Intolerance Lab

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Strawberry allergy and intolerance

Strawberries are a delicious summery fruit packed full of nutrients! Though if you have an allergy or intolerance to strawberries, eating this sweet treat can cause a range of very unpleasant symptoms. For some people, their reaction to eating strawberries is mild and barely noticeable. However, other people can have a severe and even life-threatening allergic reaction to strawberries. If you may have an intolerance or allergy to strawberries, then you’ll want to read on. Here we share the most common symptoms of a strawberry allergy or intolerance, what other foods you may need to avoid, and what you can do if you have a strawberry intolerance.

What are the symptoms of a strawberry allergy? When you have a strawberry allergy, your immune system reacts to a protein in the berry. You may respond within minutes of being in contact with the fruit, or it may take a few hours before you have obvious symptoms. With a strawberry allergy, you can have symptoms simply from being near strawberries or touching them.

The symptoms of a strawberry allergy include:

  • itchy or red skin 
  • a tingling tongue 
  • swelling of your lips or throat
  • skin rashes (like hives and eczema) 
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing 
  • coughing or wheezing
  • watery eyes 
  • nausea 
  • vomiting
  • tummy aches
  • loose stools 
  • feeling lightheaded or dizzy
If you have a severe reaction to strawberries, it is called anaphylaxis. This type of allergic reaction happens immediately and often involves several violent symptoms at the same time. It is important to get urgent medical care if you experience any symptoms of anaphylaxis, like:
  • swelling of your tongue 
  • swelling of your throat so you can’t breathe properly 
  • a rapid pulse
  • a significant drop in your blood pressure
  • fainting or loss of consciousness 

Is it just strawberries I need to worry about?

If you have an allergy to strawberries, you might react to other fruits from the same family, like:
  • blackberries 
  • cherries 
  • raspberries 
  • apples
  • pears 
  • peaches 

You might also react to:

  • pollen
  • latex
  • melons
  • apricots
  • bananas 
  • certain nuts (like hazelnuts)
  • carrots
  • celery

 

The reason you might react to these foods and items is that they either have the same protein as strawberries or they are part of the Rosaceae family. The Rosaceae family are related to pollen allergies and hay fever. It is common for people with hay fever or a strawberry allergy to have oral allergy syndrome (OAS). This makes them sensitive to both pollen, and these fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts.

What are the symptoms of a strawberry intolerance?

When you have a strawberry intolerance, your body reacts to having eaten the fruit, not from being in close contact with it like with an allergy. It is usually because you can’t digest the fruit properly. What also makes it different to an allergy is that a strawberry intolerance often takes time. In contrast, an allergy can be sudden.

If you have an intolerance to strawberries, you may get:

  • stomach aches
  • bloating
  • headaches
  • loose stools
  • skin rashes (like hives and eczema)

How do I know if I have a strawberry allergy or an intolerance?

To find out if you have a strawberry allergy or an intolerance, you need to get tested for it. If you suspect you have an allergy or you have anaphylaxis, you need to see a doctor immediately. 

It’s important not to rely only on symptoms to determine if you have an intolerance or allergy. If you think you may have an intolerance to strawberries, then you can do the food intolerance test HERE. It is a simple test that you can do from your own home. 

After we have received your sample, you will be given your results within three days. Your results will tell you whether or not you have an intolerance to strawberries. The good news is, it will also test for over 500 other food and non-food items too! This will help you know what else you may be intolerant to. 

What can I do if I have a strawberry intolerance?

If your test shows that you have a strawberry intolerance, you need to avoid eating strawberries for three months. During this time, it helps to work with a nutritionist or naturopath who can guide you through the process of healing your gut so you can tolerate the strawberries again and slowly reintroduce them back into your diet. Everyone is different with how they react, so it helps to have the guidance and support of an experienced practitioner.

Summary

Today we have looked at what a strawberry allergy and a strawberry intolerance is. We learnt that a strawberry allergy can happen from touching or eating a strawberry and that it can take just minutes for it to occur. If you have an allergy to strawberries, you might also react to other fruits of the same family or foods and items that contain a similar protein to strawberries. 

We compared the symptoms of a strawberry allergy to those of a strawberry intolerance. We then looked at how you can test for a strawberry intolerance with our simple at-home test, which you can order HERE. This test allows you to find out if you are intolerant to strawberries, as well as 500 other possible intolerances!

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