There are different types of specific food allergies; they are caused due to an immunological response to the protein present in food substances. Protein food allergy is commonly observed in children and adults alike.
An allergy is an immunological reaction mediated by IgE antibodies to that specific food protein.
Some of the foods protiens that often cause allergy reaction in children are peanuts, legumes, fish and shellfish, egg, wheat and milk.
In adults protein allergy can be due to peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, egg etc.
The primary target organs for protein allergy symptoms are skin, gastrointestinal tract and respiratory system.
Protein Allergy Symptoms
urticaria or hives: they are itchy transient, raised lesions on the skin. Sometime urticaria is associated with angioedema or local swelling of lips, tongue, eyes and throat and face.
Pruritic allergy rash all over the body can occur after eating specific food protein.
Atopic dermatitis usually occurs during infancy. It is characterized by its distribution on face, scalp and extremities, intolerable itching and relapsing course.
- Oral allergy syndrome:
Mouth: itching in soft palate and throat.
Lips: swelling and itching of lips.
The above symptoms occur after eating certain fruits and vegetables such as hazelnut, apple, carrot, celery, water melon, cantaloupe etc.
- Gastrointestinal symptoms:
Diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, loss of appetite, and stomach discomfort are symptoms manifested from specific protein food allergy, for e.g. cow milk protein allergy in an infant and child.
- Respiratory symptoms:
Cough, wheezing, breathlessness, asthma sneezing and watery nasal discharge are some of the protein allergy symptoms.
There may be associated redness and watering from the eyes.
- Anaphylaxis reaction is a serious life threatening reaction which occurs in person after eating protein containing food. Low blood pressure, slow pulse, breathing difficulty, dizziness is symptom of anaphylaxis. It can be fatal if immediate treatment is not met.
People having milk protein allergy are treated with anti histaminic medicines by their physicians.
Replacement of cow’s milk with rice milk, soy milk, oat milk is an alternative for adults as well as children having milk protein allergy.
There are special milk formulas available commercially of soy, rice, and almond milk.
Use of elemental formulas having amino acids is a gold standard in treating milk protein allergy.
Also see on Food Allergy in Infants & Foods that Cause Gluten Allergy