After consuming a delicious cuisine, when you suffer from mushroom allergy, it causes panic. While mushrooms, also known as a toadstool, are delicious, it can trigger an adverse reaction in some people. If you think toadstool is a vegetable, then you are mistaken. It belongs to the fungus family, but causes no infection when you eat it. Most people prefer to include it in their cuisine due to their nutritional benefits. But, like some food items, it can trigger an allergic response in certain individuals. You need to know more about it to ensure you take the right actions when you or your loved one experience distressing signs. Allergic reactions occur when you eat toadstool or inhale its spore. Read ahead to know more about it and take the necessary action to avoid the condition.
About Mushroom Allergy
Mushroom or toadstool has a fleshy, fruiting body with spores of a fungus. You can see it above the ground or on a food source. Edible toadstools are included in various cuisines. But, it can trigger an allergic reaction in some people when they inhale the spores or eat it. Wondering how it can affect your body? Read ahead.
How Do Food Allergies Work?
Before going into the details of how mushroom allergy can affect you, it is important to know how allergies, triggered due to food works. When you suffer from food-related allergies, it involves two significant part of the immune system like
IgE (Immunoglobulin E)
It is the type of protein, also known as an antibody. IgE moves through your blood.
These cells are present in almost all body tissue. But, you can find them significantly in areas like skin, nose, throat, lungs, and digestive tract.
When you eat the food item that can trigger allergies, certain cells in your immune system makes a lot of IgE. It is to deal with the part of the food, also known as an allergen that triggers an allergic reaction. The IgE released by the body gets attached to the surface of the mast cells. During the first time, you may not see any physical evidence of an allergic reaction. But, your body is now set up for one. So, the next time you consume the particular food item, the allergens start interacting with the IgE. It triggers the mast cells to release certain chemicals like histamine. Based on the tissue the chemicals are in, it triggers different symptoms.
How You Suffer From Mushroom Allergy?
The heat used to cook food or the acids in your stomach cannot break down some of these food allergens. These are also not broken down by the enzymes encouraging food digestion. So, histamines cross into the bloodstream. From the blood, it travels to different areas of the body and triggers an allergic reaction. The initial symptom is to feel itching in your mouth. It slowly escalates to other symptoms. The symptoms related to mushroom allergy are discussed below. You develop such symptoms within a few minutes to an hour.
Difference Between Mushroom Allergy, Intolerance, And Poisoning
Consuming toadstool can affect people in three different ways. Based on how it can affect and the symptoms you show, it is classified as:
Intolerance to toadstool can make a person slightly ill. So, when you eat something containing toadstool, then you can suffer from discomfort in the body. Since the intolerance symptoms and allergic reactions overlap, it becomes difficult to detect the actual cause of the signs. So, you need to get medical advice to detect the exact cause. While allergic reaction can develop when you consume even small amounts of the suspected food. With food intolerance, small amounts of the suspected food will have no effect.
When you suffer from toadstool intolerance, symptoms take a longer time to emerge. After you eat the offending food or compound, you can see the symptoms within 48 hours to arrive. These symptoms may persist for several days or hours. Intolerance means non-IgE mediated food hypersensitivity. It is also known as non-allergic food hypersensitivity. Due to the condition, you find it difficult to digest toadstool. When food allergies trigger the immune system, intolerance does not. So, due to intolerance, you suffer from digestive issues, even when their immune system does not react. You see signs even when your body has not released histamine.
Toadstool poisoning refers to the dangerous effects occurring from the ingestion of toxic substances present in the mushroom. The symptoms can vary from slight gastrointestinal discomfort to facing serious complications like death within a span of ten days. Secondary metabolites produced by the fungus have toxins. Usually, people suffer from poisoning when they eat a wild toadstool. People often suffer from serious complications due to the misidentification of the species. The wild toadstool has a similar color as well as general morphology, which makes them look the same as the edible species. To avoid such drastic symptoms, you need to familiarize yourself with the edible species and know about the differences with any similar-looking toxic toadstool species. The method of preparing the toadstool can also influence the safety of eating.
Signs Of Mushroom Poisoning
Poisonous toadstool contains different types of toxins. So, the symptoms differ based on the type of toxicity. You may not see serious symptoms immediately after eating it. It takes several days to see the visible symptoms. It is because it takes time for toxins to attack your vital organs. So, it develops days or weeks after eating poisonous toadstool. The signs can vary from simple gastrointestinal problems to more severe organ failure. The signs you need to observe are:
- Organ failure
Toadstool contains gastrointestinal irritants that cause some issues, which may require hospitalization. But, it causes no long-term damage. But, severe complications like organ failure shuts down your body and results in death.
Causes Of Mushroom Allergy
You suffer from mushroom allergy when the body misinterprets the proteins in the toadstool as foreign particles. So, as a response to the foreign invasion, your immune system releases IgE antibodies. These antibodies combat the proteins. It releases histamines as a result, which triggers an allergic reaction in your body. In some people, their immune system mistakenly thinks proteins present in toadstool as dangerous to their bodies. So, it counteracts to protect the body by releasing an influx of histamine. Histamines are the hormones in the body that offers protection against illness and infections.
When the influx occurs, it results in the blood vessels to dilate. It also increases blood flow, enhances mucus production, and causes constriction of the lungs. This results in gastrointestinal symptoms in people allergic to a toadstool. They can suffer from the symptoms immediately after consuming it. The increased levels of histamines can affect the lining of the intestines. So, it becomes inflamed and swollen. People allergic to mold can suffer from an allergic reaction when they consume toadstool. This is a serious condition requiring immediate evaluation by the doctor.
Symptoms Of Mushroom Allergy
If you feel uncomfortable or develop some symptoms after eating toadstool, then you need to see a doctor. The symptoms can range from mild to severe. So, check out for the following:
- Skin rashes or hives
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
- Swelling of mouth, lips, and/or throat
- Stomach cramping or bloating
Symptoms Requiring Immediate Medical Attention Due To Mushroom Allergy
Some people suffer from severe symptoms, which requires medical attention. So, you need to see a doctor immediately when you observe the following signs:
- Shortness of breath
- A sudden drop in blood pressure
Most of the above-mentioned symptoms occur due to the inflammation of the upper respiratory tract. In some people, the symptoms are mild while others can suffer from severe complications.
Severe Complication Due To Mushroom Allergy: Anaphylaxis
In some people, mushroom allergy triggers severe reactions that can become fatal. This condition is referred to as anaphylaxis. This condition can lead to the development of life-threatening symptoms like:
- Shock along with a severe drop in your blood pressure
- Contraction and tightening of the airways
- Breathing becomes difficult due to swollen throat or a feeling of a lump in the throat
- Rapid pulse
- Lightheadedness, dizziness or loss of consciousness
You need immediate treatment for the critical condition. Anaphylaxis without medical treatment can result in coma or death.
See A Doctor For Mushroom Allergy
Get immediate medical attention when you suffer from serious symptoms after eating a cuisine with mushrooms in it. See a doctor when you develop allergic symptoms. When the reaction occurs, your doctor can diagnose the problem precisely. See a doctor immediately when see the following:
- Have trouble breathing
- A sudden and dangerous drop in blood pressure
- Feel lightheaded or dizzy
- Rapid pulse
How To Diagnose Mushroom Allergy?
When you have no conclusive idea of what caused the allergic reactions, you need to see a doctor. A medical professional can perform various tests to detect the actual cause of the symptom. The most common method to detect mushroom allergy are:
A Blood Test
It is to check if the symptoms you observe occurs due to an allergic reaction or other underlying issues. You need to provide a sample of your blood for testing. The blood test measures your immune system’s response to particular foods like toadstool by measuring IgE, also known as immunoglobulin E (allergy-related antibody). If you suspect the intake of toadstool causing the problem, then the lab technician checks it.
This test is to check the food triggering the allergic reaction when you have no idea about what causes the symptoms. So, your doctor asks you to eliminate the suspected food items. You need to follow it for a week or two. After the period, you can add the suspected foods one at a time to check the right one triggering the problem. The test is not advisable to people who have suffered from a severe reaction to toadstool in the past. It is also not conclusive as it does not differentiate food sensitivity and food allergy.
Oral Food Challenges
It is another test used by the doctors when you are unable to detect the food source triggering allergic reactions. You need to stay in the hospital during the test. You need to eat a small yet increasing amount of suspected food items. Your doctor checks for the reaction during the test. If you do not show any reaction, then you can eliminate it as the source of the reaction. When you show a reaction, your doctor takes immediate action and offers guidelines to avoid the food source in the future.
A Skin Prick Test
To detect the actual cause of the reaction, a skin prick test can offer conclusive results. It is an accurate diagnostic test to detect mushroom allergy. During the test, the doctor injects a small amount of toadstool protein into the skin. If you are allergic to the food substance, then you develop redness and inflammation in the injected area. Doctors take all precautionary measures to tackle any adverse reaction you may develop while undergoing the test.
Treatment For Mushroom Allergy
You have no specific treatment available to cure mushroom allergy. The techniques can control the symptoms you suffer. The combination of avoidance techniques along with prescription medications can offer relief. But, if you see the symptoms after eating toadstool, then you need to see a doctor. You need to follow the instructions offered by the doctor to avoid such issues in the future. For mild symptoms, you can try some home remedies. But, you need to consult a doctor for detecting the actual problem. Here are the treatment options available:
Prescription Medications For Mild Mushroom Allergy
For mild to moderate cases of mushroom allergy, your doctor administers prescription medications like antihistamines. These medications are normally used to manage any allergic reactions you suffer. You can use the medication in two ways. You can take it as an oral medication or through a spray that is easy to administer through the nose. Due to an allergic reaction, you can suffer from respiratory issues along with itching sensation. So, to manage allergic rhinitis caused due to toadstool, taking medication can show positive effects.
The steroid is another medication used to deal with the symptoms of allergic reactions. So, your doctor can prescribe oral or topical steroids to alleviate the signs like rashes, redness, and itching. These can offer relief from the uncomfortable symptoms caused due to the allergic reaction.
Treatment For Chronic Mushroom Allergy
For chronic cases, your doctor offers immediate medical attention by giving Epinephrine injections. Some people can suffer severe complications like anaphylactic reactions. In such cases, to avoid fatal complications, your doctor the shot to relax the respiratory tract and avoid breathing problems.
It is essential to see a doctor to detect the cause of the allergic reaction. With proper guidance from the doctor, you can deal with the problem effectively.
Home Remedies For Mushroom Allergy
Taking some precautions at home can relieve the condition to a certain extent. But, it is better to get medical assistance before trying home care. Allergic reactions can trigger serious responses in some people. So, get medical care first. You can discuss with your doctor regarding the methods suggested below to relieve mild symptoms.
Fasting On Juices
Fresh fruit juices can help you flush out the toadstool that remains from your stomach. So, you can try fasting on fruit juices. It helps cleanse your stomach and helps remove any residue of the food triggering an allergic reaction. It is a general cure for different types of food allergies.
When you have children at home, it is better to stock up on over-the-counter antihistamines. They can help relieve mild reactions at home. Having Benadryl at home can help you deal with minor issues caused due to mushroom allergy. It can combat itching and hives. But, when you develop hives suddenly, it can indicate anaphylaxis, which you cannot deal at home.
Use Essential Eucalyptus Oil
The use of eucalyptus oil can help deal with skin irritations or itchiness. Eucalyptus oil contains anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antibacterial, decongestant, deodorant, and stimulating. You need to dilute the eucalyptus oil before applying topically. You can also use it in a warm bath to relieve skin problems caused due to the allergic reaction.
It is a part of Ayurvedic practice and helps relieve nasal congestion as well as other discomfort caused due to allergies. You can use the small handy device to cleanse your body from the allergens. Using the device, you can use the saline rinse to flush out allergens from the body.
Use Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar or ACV is well known as a strong immunity booster. It also heals your gut. So, if you experience discomfort due to food allergies, then you need to take ACV with water. It strengthens your immune system by aiding to mucus break up along with supporting lymphatic drainage. Take a glass of water with one to two tablespoon of apple cider vinegar along with lemon juice. Taking this mixture three times a day can offer relief from allergy-related symptoms.
Eat Food Containing Quercetin
Quercetin is effective to combat allergic reactions. It is the natural pigment you can find in fruits as well as vegetables. The flavonoid is effective as it mimics the anti-histamine properties exhibited by some of the medications used to treat allergic reactions. The flavonoid contains antioxidant properties that effectively reduce the allergic symptoms by reducing inflammation in the body triggered due to allergies. So, you need to add foods rich in quercetin like:
- Black beans
- Bell peppers
- Black beans
- Red kidney beans
- Pinto beans
Try Alternative Therapy Like Acupuncture
Alternative therapies like acupuncture can offer relief from food allergies. The ancient Chinese practice involves using small needles on your meridian points. When placed correctly throughout the body, acupuncture can offer relief from several ailments. So, it relieves issues from chronic pain to weight loss. But, the effectiveness of the treatment in dealing with food allergy remains unclear.
How To Prevent Mushroom Allergies?
You like to eat mushrooms due to their uniqueness. It is the fruit of a fungus belonging to the Agaricus bisporus genus. It is the only edible fungi that you can use in different cuisines. After eating it, you may not develop infections. While the toadstool is a fungus, it contains vitamins and antioxidants. It provides you with Vitamin A, Vitamin C, B Vitamins, and has moderate sources of phosphorous, selenium, and potassium. It has become a favorite ingredient used in culinary preparation. While toadstool cannot cause infection in people, it can trigger an allergic reaction in some people.
After eating the cuisine containing it, people can develop swelling or edema. The symptoms accompanying resembles signs associated with other food allergies. So, it can trigger itching in various parts of the body. You can also experience breathing difficulty, vomiting, nausea, poor digestion, or palpitation. So, how to prevent such issues? Here are some of the tips you can follow mushroom allergy:
It is an only practical way to avoid any allergic reaction. You have no cure available for allergies caused due to food substances. Your immune system identifies mushroom as a foreign substance or an antigen. So, your body tries to develop antibodies to fight off the antigens. Due to the formation of such antibodies at high levels, you see changes in the body. To avoid such reactions, you need to stay away from cuisines containing toadstool. It is the best way to prevent such issues.
Check What You Eat
You need to check what you eat. Eating even the slightest amount of the food item can trigger reactions. So, you need to thoroughly check what you consume directly or indirectly. Never eat anything that is not prepared under your supervision. It is because even the slightest use of toadstool can result in antigen-antibody allergic reactions.
Avoid Processed/Canned Foods
Processed or canned foods can contain toadstool in different forms. So, you need to avoid such foods that can cause issues for your body.
Check Ingredients List
When you buy products, never fail to read the ingredients list. So, read the label carefully. While buying avoid any foods with a toadstool in any form.
Strengthen Your Immune System
You need to take steps to strengthen your immune system. So, restrict the bad habits like smoking and excessive drinking. With a weakened immune system, allergic reactions can have devastating complications. Therefore, try to stop or limit such bad habits.
Eat Healthy Diet
Eat a healthy diet as it strengthens your immune system. So, include food items like fresh fruits as well as vegetables to boost your health. When your immune system is strong, it has the ability to assuage any signs of allergies.
You have no specific treatment to deal with the mushroom allergy. But, with proper medical attention and preventive strategies, you can deal with the condition better. You can suffer from mild to moderate reactions due to consuming food items containing toadstool. Since there is no guarantee the reaction will not cause serious complications as the reaction can become worse. So, talk to your doctor regarding your concerns and follow the preventive steps.
[expand title=”View Article Sources“]