Having a food allergy isn't something you should take lightly. Even when you have an allergic reaction to a seemingly harmless food, such as an avocado, your body doesn't recognize the proteins in the food. Your immune system goes into attack mode as it struggles to deal with the foreign proteins. While some symptoms of an avocado allergy are mild, some can be dangerously severe.
If you ingest something with avocado, your mouth might start tingling, and your lips could become itchy. Even touching avocado could also result in itchiness and possibly redness. After eating the food, you could have runny, watery eyes and start wheezing. These symptoms may appear immediately or several hours later in some cases, reports the Food Allergy Research & Education website. Plus, as the allergen progresses through your digestive tract, you could suffer diarrhea, stomach cramping or vomiting.
Treating the Allergy
If you're severely allergic to avocados, your throat might start swelling, making it difficult to breath. You'll need immediate medical attention in this case, since you could be going into anaphylaxis, a life-threatening condition. Although if you have a known avocado allergy, your physician will most likely give you a prescription for epinephrine, which comes as an injection. This way if you do come into contact with avocado, you can administer the injection and prevent going into anaphylaxis. If you do give yourself an epinephrine shot, however, you should still follow up with emergency medical treatment, just to ensure the allergy has subsided.
Ordering anything with avocados or guacamole is likely to send your allergies into a frenzy. But you can also experience symptoms from cross contamination. For example, if the chef making your sandwich is unaware of your allergies, he may use the same knife he used to slice an avocado to cut up the onions for your sandwich. Even though your entree doesn't have avocado, it has been cross-contaminated with avocado. Because of the possibility of cross contamination, always alert anyone preparing your food about an allergy.
Concerns of Latex
If you have a latex allergy, you're more likely to be allergic to avocados, explains the Better Health Channel. Roughly half of people with a latex allergy have outbreaks not only from avocado but sometimes also from bananas, strawberries, tomatoes, kiwis, plums, passion fruit and chestnuts. This occurs because a few of the proteins in latex are similar to the proteins in these foods. If you know you're sensitive to latex, consider avoiding avocados, as well as these other types of foods, or get yourself tested for these potential allergens.