According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 50 million Americans suffer from different types of allergies. Among those, food allergy is the most common one and is found in both adults and children. Food allergies do not go away in most cases, and last lifelong. However, it has been found that approximately 20% of children with allergies to peanuts and 14% of children with allergies to tree nuts eventually get rid of it.
There are different types of nuts including cashews, pecans, almonds, macadamia nuts, pistachios, walnuts, and Brazil nuts. People allergic to any of these types of nuts show specific signs and symptoms. Although peanuts are not considered nuts despite having the word nuts in their name, many people are allergic to them and show symptoms similar to nut allergies.
According to the Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE), if people are allergic to one kind of tree nut, it is highly possible that they will be allergic to other types of nuts as well. There are almost 25% to 40% of people who suffer from both peanut as well as tree nut allergies.
People allergic to nuts show many signs and symptoms, especially skin rashes. The reason is that their body considers nuts as allergens and initiates an immune response against them by releasing a substance called histamine, which is the trigger for different symptoms. Check our list of signs and symptoms of nut allergy below.
Nut Allergy: Some Common Signs and Symptoms
According to Healthline, the following are some of the signs and symptoms that are commonly found in people with a nut allergy:
Skin Problems: People who are susceptible to nut allergies often show some skin problems including hives, irritation, swelling, inflammation, redness, rashes, tenderness, and breakouts. The symptoms go away once the allergic reaction is over. People also take antihistamines to outgrow the allergic signs and symptoms.
ENT (eye, nose, and throat) Problems: It has been found that the allergic reactions initiated due to nuts often affect the upper respiratory tract leading to many signs and symptoms like sneezing, stuffy nose, watery eyes, running nose, itching, and sore throat.
GIT (Gastrointestinal Tract) Complications: The majority of nut allergies result in stomach issues because the allergens make their way into the intestines via the stomach. Some of the common stomach issues are nausea, stomach cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Breathing Complications and Anaphylaxis: As a reaction against nut allergens, inflammation may occur in some body parts including the airways. The swelling of airways restricts the flow of air and therefore results in breathing difficulty and shortness of breath. Some people may even develop allergic asthma and anaphylaxis, leading to the worst symptoms of shortness of breath.
Anaphylaxis is one of the worst allergic reactions caused due to an immune response of the body against allergens. The production of histamines during an anaphylactic reaction is more, leading to swelling in the airways and throat which makes it extremely difficult to breathe. Some other symptoms of anaphylaxis besides shortness of breath are itching, hypotension or low blood pressure, confusion, swelling in the face, and changes in the heart rate.
People should not ignore the signs and symptoms associated with a nut allergy and should visit a specialist as soon as they experience the above-mentioned symptoms.