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Regarding Protein Allergy You Need to Know

Protein is an important nutritional component that the body needs. But in some people, protein can actually backfire for the body that triggers an allergic reaction. This condition is called protein allergy. Basically, a protein allergy is a food allergy, an allergic reaction that occurs when a person's immune system responds excessively to the protein from the food consumed. Generally, this condition affects the skin, digestive tract, and respiratory tract. Symptoms of protein allergy can appear suddenly after consuming certain foods that contain protein. Apart from food, protein allergies can also occur due to skin contact reactions to certain proteins in animals or plants.

Know the Food Sources that Cause Protein Allergies

All foods that contain protein have the potential to cause allergies in some people. However, there are certain types of foods that are very common to cause allergies. Protein allergy problems that often occur are egg allergies, seafood or seafood allergies such as fish and shrimp, and nut allergies.
  • Egg allergy

  • Egg allergy is a type of protein allergy that occurs more frequently in children than in adults. This is an abnormal reaction of a person's immune system to proteins found in eggs. Either egg white or egg yolk, both contain proteins that can trigger allergies. Infants who are still breastfeeding breast milk can also experience an allergic reaction to protein if the mother consumes eggs.
  • Fish allergy

  • Fish allergy is a type of protein allergy that occurs mostly in adults. This is an abnormal reaction of a person's immune system to proteins found in certain types of fish, both marine and freshwater fish. Fish protein allergy reactions can occur when consuming or in contact with fish.
  • Maritime food or seafood allergies

  • This is an allergic reaction to protein due to the body's immune system overreacting to proteins found in certain seafood, such as shrimp, crabs, oysters, lobsters, squid, and octopus. Symptoms can appear immediately or a few minutes after consuming seafood triggers a protein allergy. Someone who has seafood allergies can experience allergies to all types of seafood, but can also only be allergic to one or several specific types of seafood.
  • Peanut allergy

  • Protein in nuts can also trigger protein allergies. Various types of nuts can cause allergies, including almonds, pistachios, walnuts, cashews, to peanuts.
  • Milk allergy

  • Milk or food products and drinks containing milk can cause allergies. Milk allergy occurs when the body's immune system considers the protein in milk as a dangerous foreign body, causing an allergic reaction. Sometimes milk allergy is considered to be the same as lactose or milk intolerance, but the two conditions are different.

    Symptoms and Treatment of Protein Allergy

    Symptoms of protein allergy that arise from eating eggs, fish, seafood, milk, and nuts are generally the same, ranging from mild to severe. Reactions that appear in the form of itching and red rashes on the skin, watery and itchy eyes, swelling on the lips; disorders of the respiratory tract such as nasal congestion and sneezing; and digestive tract problems such as nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, and diarrhea. In rare cases, protein allergy can cause a medical emergency called anaphylaxis, with symptoms of coughing, dizziness, loss of consciousness, feeling weak, and there is swelling in the respiratory tract that causes shortness of breath. Here are some steps to handle protein allergy:
    • A proper diagnosis by an immunologist is the key to treating a protein allergy condition. The doctor will do a physical exam and allergy test.
    • The second step that can be done is to avoid allergens (allergens). For example if you experience allergies after eating eggs, it is recommended not to consume eggs and any food containing eggs.
    • Do not forget to always read the packaging label of food products that you buy, make sure the product does not contain protein in foods that can trigger your allergies.
    • For mild allergic reactions, allergic sufferers can take antihistamines to relieve their symptoms. For severe allergies and can cause anaphylaxis, the condition needs to be treated immediately in hospital.
    Given the benefits of protein which is very good for the body, people with protein allergies are encouraged to do immunotherapy or desensitization therapy, to train the body to build a tolerance reaction to protein. Consult your doctor about what steps can be taken to overcome protein allergy without having to completely avoid the sources of protein.