While fruits and veggies generally do the body good, they can cause troubling symptoms if you have oral allergy syndrome. OAS is an allergic reaction to proteins found in fruits and vegetable. It can cause your lips, tongue and throat to itch, tingle, and/or swell when you eat certain types of fresh produce.
Chances are, if you have OAS, you also have allergies to birch, ragweed, and grass pollens. The proteins in these pollens very closely resemble the proteins in various fruits and vegetables. When the body comes in contact with these proteins, it often mistakes them for outdoor grass and tree pollens and spirals into an allergic reaction.
While OAS can cause a severe reaction such as anaphylaxis, which constricts the airways, it is usually more irritating than dangerous, and it often subsides with time. To minimize OAS and its attendant mouth discomfort, try peeling and cooking fruits and vegetables that typically set off reactions.
And the happy news for OAS sufferers is that if you treat the pollen allergy, the food allergy will often subside, too. Allergy immunotherapy, either through shots or oral drops, can “teach” the body to stop overreacting to allergy causing elements in the environment.