The gastrointestinal symptoms that manifest after consuming mushrooms might be an indication of a mushroom allergy. Even though mushrooms are not considered as common food allergens, it indicates that if an individual is allergic to mold, he/she might end up with a food allergy after eating mushrooms.
In case mushrooms instigate an allergic response, the coating of the intestines becomes inflamed and end up swollen from increased levels of histamine. Always bear in mind that mushroom allergy is considered as a serious medical issue that requires proper assessment by a doctor.
Close look on an allergic reaction to mushrooms
An allergy to mushroom typically occurs once the immune system does not recognize the proteins present in the food. Since the immune system could not identify the proteins as safe, it initiates an attack using the immunoglobulin E antibodies (IgE) that trigger the mast cells to produce histamine.
Histamine is the hormone that helps protect the body against diseases and infections. Once the histamine is produced in large amounts, it causes the blood vessels to dilate, thus increasing the flow of blood, mucus production as well as constriction of the lungs. Remember that there is no cure for any type of allergy including mushroom allergy, but can be managed with modifications to the diet by avoidance of mushrooms and products that contain them.
Swelling of the intestines
Once the histamine is generated in the intestinal lining, inflammation develops which triggers the typical digestive symptoms of an allergy to mushroom. The common digestive symptoms include vomiting, nausea, cramping, diarrhea, bloating and abdominal pain.
Always bear in mind that the digestive system is the first to come in contact with food eaten. This is why these symptoms develop in just a matter of minutes. Other usual allergy symptoms include sinus congestion, hives, skin rashes, headaches as well as shortness of breath, lightheadedness and wheezing.
The best way to determine the type of mushroom that triggers an allergic reaction is to undergo testing. The allergy tests involve the blood and skin to determine whether or not the body generates immunoglobulin E antibodies.
During a skin test, a small amount of the protein from a mushroom is injected beneath the upper layer of the skin. In case within 15 minutes the skin becomes inflamed, itchy or develops red-colored bumps, it indicates an allergy. The suspected allergy is confirmed via a blood sample that is analyzed in a laboratory and tested for the presence of IgE antibodies.
Considerations to bear in mind
In case an individual is positive for mushroom allergy, the doctor will recommend avoidance of eating all foods that include mold. The typical foods that should be avoided include sour cream, cheese, beer, sour milk, sauerkraut, wine, pickled meat, dried fruits and fish.