A cashew allergy doesn’t always develop in childhood. You can develop a tree nut allergy at any point in your life. What happens is that your body thinks a substance is harmful – that can be mold, dander, or food. Scientists haven’t figured out why this happens.
Food allergies affect over 15 million people in the U.S. Every year. Cashew and other tree nut allergies impact roughly 90,000 people.
If you think you might have a cashew allergy, keep reading. We’ll go over the symptoms, treatments and food alternatives to cashews.
Cashew Allergy Symptoms
An allergic reaction to cashews typically appears right after being exposed to cashews.
It’s important to note that you don’t have to eat cashews to have an allergic reaction. If your allergy is severe, an allergic reaction can occur by touching cashews.
Symptoms can include:
- Itchy mouth and throat, eyes or skin
- Difficulty swallowing
- A runny nose or nasal congestion
- Shortness of breath
- Nausea, stomach cramps, or diarrhea
Anaphylaxis is the most severe reaction and it can be life-threatening. Your lips and tongue may swell, and you may find it hard to speak or breathe. If that occurs, immediately seek medical help.
When allergic reactions in children have been studied, it was found that 50% have skin irritations such as hives, 25% have a hard time breathing, and 17% have intestinal issues.
Cashew Allergy Treatment
The best treatment for cashew allergies is prevention. That means avoiding cashews and products that may contain cashews. That requires carefully reading labels of products at the grocery store and asking questions when eating out. You can never be too careful.
You may be allergic to other tree nuts as well as cashews. It’s best to seek medical attention so you know exactly what you’re allergic to.
Since nut allergies are one of the top causes of anaphylaxis in the U.S., your doctor may advise you to carry an auto-injector to treat anaphylactic shock.
Food Alternatives to Cashews
Are you looking for an alternative to cashews? There are some options out there to consider.
Other nuts seem like the most obvious alternative to cashews. Check to make sure you’re not allergic to other nuts before you reach for a handful of almonds.
Another alternative is dried fruit such as dates, figs or apricots. Dried fruit can be an excellent substitute for cashews in salads and some baked goods. They can add flavor and fiber to your diet.
Do you like the crunchy texture of cashews? In that case, crunchy granola or seeds can be a good substitute for cashews. Give sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds a try.
Do You Have a Cashew Allergy?
If you think you have an allergy to cashews, don’t wait to get it taken care of. Cashew allergies can be severe and life-threatening if they are not treated.
At Emerald Coast Urgent Care, we provide medical care for non-life threatening injuries and illnesses, including allergies. We serve the Destin and Panama City Beach areas.
Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.