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Aged Foods That Cause Allergies

author image Tara Carson
Based in Richmond, Va., Tara Carson has written articles for editorial and corporate online and print publications for more than 10 years. She has experience as an adjunct professor of nutrition at Northwest Christian University and holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism and nutrition from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Aged Foods That Cause Allergies
Sliced salami on a stone platter. Photo Credit LDProd/iStock/Getty Images


An estimated 2 percent of adults and 8 percent of children in the United States have food allergies, according to the "European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology." Food allergies are caused by an immune system response, with symptoms that affect the gastrointestinal system, respiratory tract and skin. Aged foods contain chemicals created during the aging process, and these cause allergic reactions in some people. If you experience an allergic reaction after eating an aged food, see your doctor to determine if you have a food allergy.


Salami is a generic term for any variety of encased pork. The word is derived from "salumen," the Latin term for salted meats. Ground pork, spices and fat are combined and covered with a synthetic or natural edible casing. Salami ages in a cool, dark place where it remains until its ready for consumption. Aged meats contain chemicals, including a chemical called tyramine that may cause the release of histamine in the body, which results in food allergies. Instead of aged salami, try the fresh variety that requires cooking. It has a similar taste, but consuming the fresh meat will help you forgo a possible allergic reaction, according to the Life In Italy website.


Most cheeses are aged; however, the length of the aging process varies. All aged cheeses contain tyramine that can result in food allergies. In some cases, the reaction causes blood vessel vasodilation and an ensuing migraine headache, according to the Health Canada website. If you suspect an allergy to aged cheeses, do not eat parmigiano reggiano, pecorino romano, manchego, cheddar, gorgonzola and roquefort. Instead, try fresh cheeses such as ricotta and mozzarella, according to the Cheese Library website.


As with many fermented foods, cabbage's transformation into aged sauerkraut developed for functional reasons. The Dutch ate sauerkraut on ships during seafaring voyages because no refrigeration was required to preserve the food. The recipe for today's sauerkraut includes shredded cabbage, salt and spices. The combination is then aged. Sauerkraut is among many fermented foods that contain tyramine, which sometimes cause allergic reactions, including migraine headaches, according to migraine specialist Dr. Richard Podell's website.

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