Many people have food sensitivities. You may have an allergic reaction appear as a child, or an allergy may seem to suddenly appear when you are an adult, even though you ate the food many times previously 2. Strawberries are one type of food that may cause food allergy symptoms 12. Although they have health benefits, you may need to eliminate strawberries from your diet if you experience food sensitivity symptoms such as a skin rash 1.
If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
If you have a strawberry allergy, you have a hypersensitivity to the proteins found in strawberries 1. When you consume strawberries, the immune system overreacts to the proteins and attacks them by creating IgE antibodies 1. The antibodies enter the blood and cause cells throughout your body to release histamine, a hormone that leads to irritation and inflammation in soft tissue, such as the sinuses, lungs and skin.
Skin Rash Symptoms
Allergy to Cardboard
Hives, pruritus and contact dermatitis are the most common skin rashes associated with a strawberry allergy. Hives are welts that form in clusters that are extremely itchy and appear and disappear within a matter minutes. Pruritus is a general term used for itchy and inflamed skin, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Contact dermatitis, also known as contact eczema, is a reaction of the skin when it comes into direct contact with an allergen. Contact eczema causes blisters to form that are itchy. The blisters can weep, crust over and become infected.
- Hives, pruritus and contact dermatitis are the most common skin rashes associated with a strawberry allergy.
Other symptoms of a strawberry allergy are tingling in the mouth or throat, asthma, nasal congestion and digestive issues. The patient may experience shortness of breath, the inability to breathe, wheezing and excessive coughing. Nasal congestion can cause sneezing, postnasal drip, sinus pressure and a runny nose. Digestive issues include nausea, bloating, vomiting and diarrhea. In rare cases, a strawberry allergy can lead to anaphylactic shock, a severe condition that results when you body shuts down in response to an allergen. Symptoms include difficulty or inability to breathe, heart palpitations, slurred speech, swelling and skin rashes.
- Other symptoms of a strawberry allergy are tingling in the mouth or throat, asthma, nasal congestion and digestive issues.
- The patient may experience shortness of breath, the inability to breathe, wheezing and excessive coughing.
Skin Rashes and Allergies to Soy
Treating skin rashes from a strawberry allergy begins with not consuming or touching strawberries 1. Kids Health states that corticosteroid creams are an effective treatment for allergic skin conditions 3. Over-the-counter hydrocortisone creams or prescribed corticosteroid lotions may be used to reduce inflammation and itching. Oral and topical antihistamines may be used to help alleviate the itching sensation and other allergic reaction symptoms.
You may need to do more than avoid eating whole strawberries 1. Having sensitivity to this or any food means you will need to avoid foods that contains the allergen or foods that came in contact with strawberries 1. If you develop a skin rash after eating strawberries, do not scratch the affected areas. This can cause a break in the skin, leaving it vulnerable for secondary skin infections, such as impetigo.
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- Beyond Allergy: Allergy to Strawberries
- MedlinePlus: Food Allergy
- Kids Health: Eczema
- MedlinePlus: Itching
- FamilyDoctor.org: Food Allergies
- MedlinePlus: Anaphylaxis
- Strawberries, raw. FoodData Central. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Published April 1, 2019.
- Managing dietary carbohydrates for better health. UW Integrative Health Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. Updated 2018.
- Strawberries, the superfood you've been eating your whole life. Produce for Better Health Foundation. Updated 2020.
- Schell J, Scofield RH, Barrett JR, et al. Strawberries improve pain and inflammation in obese adults with radiographic evidence of knee osteoarthritis. Nutrients. 2017;9(9). doi:10.3390/nu9090949
- National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements. Vitamin C: Fact sheet for health professionals. Updated February 27, 2020.
- Chen T, Shi N, Afzali A. Chemopreventive effects of strawberry and black raspberry on colorectal cancer in inflammatory bowel disease. Nutrients. 2019;11(6). doi:10.3390/nu11061261
- Anaphylactic reactions to cherries, strawberries and grapes. American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology. Updated 2018.
- Strawberries & more. University of Illinois Extension. Updated 2020.
- Zibdeh N. A very berry summer. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Updated 2018.
Diane Marks started her writing career in 2010 and has been in health care administration for more than 30 years. She holds a registered nurse license from Citizens General Hospital School of Nursing, a Bachelor of Arts in health care education from California University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in health administration from the University of Pittsburgh.