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Sweets that Cause Sinus Problems

author image Carol Deeb
Carol Deeb has been an editor and writer since 1988. Her work has appeared in magazines, newspapers and online publications, as well as a book on education. Deeb is a real-estate investor and business owner with professional experience in human resources. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from San Diego State University.
Sweets that Cause Sinus Problems
Certain sweets, such as ice cream and chocolate, can cause sinus problems. Photo Credit: bhofack2/iStock/Getty Images

Certain foods can affect people in different ways. If you have allergies to those foods, symptoms can include rashes and swollen glands. Some foods can cause similar reactions in the majority of people. When it comes to eating certain sweets, your sinuses may experience problems, whether you are sensitive to the foods or not.

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Sinus problems, such as allergies and infections, can be triggered by a variety of food and environmental stimuli. The four sinus passages are connected to your nose through bone structures. Mucus drains from this area to eliminate toxins and other organisms from your body. When these passages become infected or clogged, they aren't able to drain the mucus, and blood vessels enlarge, causing pressure on the area. This can happen if you have a reaction to food that you have eaten.

Ice Cream and Shakes

A number of properties in ice cream, shakes and other sweet dairy treats can cause sinus inflammation and problems. Dairy products that are pasteurized may give you an allergic reaction and cause congestion. Also, lactose, which is a sugar in dairy sweets, and refined sugar can compromise your immune system and lead to sinus infections. Sinus problems from consumption can occur in some people regardless of the fat content in your dairy products.


The cocoa used to make chocolate treats can cause sinus reactions. Some people are allergic to the phenylethylamine it contains -- an ingredient also used in some wines. Also, the high sugar content in small servings of most chocolates can cause swelling in the nasal passages due to an allergic reaction. In addition, milk chocolate contains dairy and, for those who are highly sensitive, sinus problems can occur from ingestion.


Cake-type sweets, such as doughnuts, cookies and sweet bread, contain refined flour and sugar that exacerbate the growth of candida, a fungus that can cause sinus infections. The fungal growth weakens your immune system and prevents your sinuses from working properly. Once you remove these foods from your diet, it can take weeks for your system to eliminate them. Therefore, if you are experiencing sinus problems, you may not have wait before you are relieved of your symptoms.

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