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Foods That Trigger Ragweed Allergies

author image Rae Uddin
Rae Uddin has worked as a freelance writer and editor since 2004. She specializes in scientific journalism and medical and technical writing. Her work has appeared in various online publications. Uddin earned her Master of Science in integrated biomedical sciences with an emphasis in molecular and cellular biochemistry from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine.
Foods That Trigger Ragweed Allergies
Yellow ragweed flowers. Photo Credit: AwakenedEye/iStock/Getty Images

If you have an allergy to ragweed -- a type of flowering plant common throughout North America -- you have likely experienced such symptoms as a runny or stuffy nose, sneezing or sore throat. In addition to these familiar allergy symptoms, individuals with ragweed allergies may also experience an allergic reaction to certain types of food -- a condition called oral allergy syndrome. According to the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, certain foods may trigger an allergic reaction in individuals who are allergic to ragweed. If you particularly enjoy one of these trigger foods, you don't necessarily have to give it up all together. Opt for canned varieties or juices which aren't as likely to be contaminated with pollen.

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Bananas. Photo Credit: Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images

If you are allergic to ragweed you may experience an allergic reaction to eating or handling raw bananas. Symptoms may include swelling of the lips or tongue or irritation of your mouth, palate or throat. Such symptoms typically occur only in response to eating or handling the raw form of the allergy-inducing fruit or vegetable. If you experience an allergic reaction to eating or handling a raw banana, consider cooking the banana prior to eating it, as this may alleviate symptoms. If symptoms persist after handling or ingesting the cooked banana, you may want to consider choosing an alternate fruit, such as an apple, for your next healthy snack.


Cantaloupe melon.
Cantaloupe melon. Photo Credit: Viktar/iStock/Getty Images

An allergy to ragweed may cause you to experience an allergic reaction after eating or handling cantaloupe, honeydew or watermelon. You may experience mouth or throat irritation and may develop a rash on skin that has come in contact with these types of melons. Depending upon the severity of your allergy, ingesting these types of melons may also cause stomach irritation, including cramps, vomiting or diarrhea. Cooking these types of fruits prior to eating them may help you avoid an allergic reaction. You may also want to purchase melons that are already cut and packaged.

Zucchini or Cucumber

Cut up zucchini.
Cut up zucchini. Photo Credit: bit245/iStock/Getty Images

With a ragweed allergy you may also experience an allergic reaction after eating certain vegetables, including zucchini or cucumber. Raw versions of these vegetables are most frequently associated with allergic reactions. Such reactions may include irritation or itching of the lips, mouth, palate or throat. Cooking these vegetables prior to ingesting them may help alleviate or reduce the occurrence of allergic symptoms. If allergies persist, you may need to choose alternative vegetables to eat with your next meal.

Chamomile Tea, Sunflower Seeds or Honey

Honey in jar.
Honey in jar. Photo Credit: bit245/iStock/Getty Images

If you are allergic to ragweed you may experience an allergic reaction after handling or ingesting chamomile tea, sunflower seeds, honey or other types of food that contain pollen from the Compositae family. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America notes that a severe allergic reaction, such as shock, may be induced by these foods.

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