Royal jelly is a white-milky substance produced by worker bees as a super-food that maintains and grows the queen bee. The substance is extracted and used for health benefits, sold in supplement form. The website Drugs.com states that royal jelly may cause allergic reactions in some people. Before taking royal jelly, talk with your doctor about its safety for your condition. Royal jelly allergic side effects include asthma, general hypersensitive symptoms and death. If you experience any of these symptoms, discontinue use and make an appointment with your doctor.
Asthma is a common side effect of taking royal jelly, if you're allergic to it. Allergic asthma affects about 50 percent of people who have been diagnosed with asthma, according to Asthma and Allergy Foundation. The immune system mistakes the proteins found in royal jelly as harmful and begins to defend the body by producing antibodies and histamine. Histamine released in the lungs, causes inflammation and swelling in the airways. This leads to common asthma symptoms, such as shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, coughing, wheezing and chest tightness. Wheezing is a high-pitched sound made from constriction in the opening of the esophagus.
General hypersensitivity is another term for an allergic reaction. Common allergic reaction symptoms include complications in the digestive tract, the skin, respiratory system and the cardiovascular system. Digestive tract complications includes nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain and cramping. Medications will not help these symptoms until the royal jelly is removed from the body. The skin can become inflamed, causing eczema, hives or general rashes. Allergic skin conditions cause redness, swelling and severe itching on the surface of the skin. Respiratory problems may include sneezing, watery eyes, nasal congestion, throat irritation and sinus pain. Common cardiovascular symptoms include dizziness and lightheadedness.
Death may result from a severe allergic reaction from taking royal jelly. Although uncommon, anaphylactic shock may occur within seconds of ingesting royal jelly, according to the website MayoClinic.com. The body overreacts to the royal jelly and unleashes a flood of chemicals to fight it off, but results in sending the body into a state of the shock. Your blood pressure drops suddenly, making you feel faint, dizzy and pale. The lungs quickly close, restricting your ability to breathe. You may experience anxiety, severe chest pain, a weak but rapid pulse, nausea and vomiting. If you experience these symptoms, call 911. An injection of epinephrine may be required to alleviate the symptoms.