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Do apples ever make you cough?


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#1 Pan

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 04:21 PM

I just ate an apple a few minutes ago. Bad idea, as I'm still a bit prone to coughing, though finally mostly recovered from a flu. I find that apples seem to encourage coughing, and I don't mean from particles of food going down the windpipe. I forget this and eat them anyway because I like them, but it's disturbing me. Does this happen to any of you? Any insight into what in ripe organic apples might be irritating my throat?

Edited by Pan, 12 January 2004 - 04:54 PM.


#2 Mudpuppie

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 04:51 PM

I have a friend who always got a tickle in his throat after eating honeydew melon. He finally found out, through a coincidental visit to an allergist, that it's a mild allergy. Maybe yours is too?
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#3 Pan

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 04:54 PM

Maybe. It's something I hadn't noticed until fairly recently (a matter of months or a couple of years; I can't remember exactly how long). Sucks if I've gotten allergic to yet another thing. It's only with raw apples, though. No problem with hard cider or pastries made with apples.

#4 JennyUptown

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 04:57 PM

If I eat an apple right off the core, my gums swell and my face gets itchy. Not sure if it's something on the apple (e.g., pesticide I haven't scrubbed all the way off) or some kind of allergy to apple skin.

#5 Mabelline

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 05:03 PM

You will probably consider this as coming from left field, but with you recovering from the flu; been there, done that, burned the t-shirt- do you maybe reckon it might be a sensitivity to the ethylene, like what we were talking about with bananas? I mean, like, it is a gas? And perhaps the flu has made you more noticably affected?

#6 Mudpuppie

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 05:04 PM

I found this from a health website:

There are types of food allergies called silent or settle food sensitivities where the patient would only have a reaction to them only if eaten in large quantities, with certain other foods, during certain times of the year, or when the immune system is stimulated (example, during a virus infection) or after an allergic reaction to a drug. A special form of food allergy has only recently been discovered. This is due to cross-reactivity between certain food proteins and certain pollen proteins which at the surface seem to have nothing to do With each other, but at the level of your immune system they may took the same or very similar. For example, some patients who are allergic to certain tree or weed pollens, may develop an allergic reaction to eating watermelon or apples, during the time of the year when the pollen count is high and/or their allergies are out of control. This is because your immune system "sees" certain protein elements in the watermelon or apple, as the same or very similar (cross-reactive) to the protein contained in the tree or weed pollen, which you are already allergic to. Similarly there are cross-reacting proteins among a specific type of synthetic rubber (latex) and several fruits including banana and avocado.

(http://www.doctoreli...th/health7.html)


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#7 Pan

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 05:13 PM

Thanks a lot, Mudpuppie!

#8 Squeat Mungry

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 05:18 PM

Wow, Mudpuppie, thanks!! My friends (and sometimes even I) have always thought I was insane when I swore I only sometimes have a mild allergic reaction to avocados!

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#9 Mudpuppie

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 05:22 PM

Google is my best friend.
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#10 bloviatrix

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:24 PM

What happens if you eat an apple with the peel removed? Do you still get the urge to cough?
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#11 Pan

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:25 PM

I haven't tried. I don't think it would make a difference, though.

#12 Mabelline

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:27 PM

That was indeed a cogent question.

#13 Pan

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:32 PM

Indeed a good question. But my perception is that what's bothering me is inside the peel.

#14 lamington

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:32 PM

It's good to see this info, and other people's experiences! For me it started with sugar melons of any sort: quite strong swelling of the soft palate and pharynx, with itching. It progressed to raw carrot, tomato, avocado, banana, certain types of apple, nectarine, mandarin, cherry, hazelnut... that covers most of them. Only in their raw state, and when eaten alone. Even very mild heat treatment is sufficient to prevent a reaction from occurring, which is great! Un-heated, I react probably 60-70% of the time.
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#15 jhlurie

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:35 PM

Apples... coughing and me?

Nope. Occasionally they have made me sneeze though.
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#16 Mabelline

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:38 PM

lamington, I don't reckon I'll be running into you at a raw restaurant, right? This is no joke, folks, there are people who can not tolerate not only raw foods, but the way we raise raw foods.

#17 lamington

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 09:43 PM

lamington, I don't reckon I'll be running into you at a raw restaurant, right?

lol, indeed not... though maybe a mix-n-match would dilute things! I've broken a record this week and eaten five whole raw carrots without a hint of an itch. Rare event.
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#18 Mabelline

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 10:05 PM

Oh, my, this will sound vey superficial, but when I was hospitalized, I was restricted really severely on my diet, so of course what did I crave...bingo, exactly what I could not have. Not having the ability to eat a food in it's raw state is spooky, to say the least. We are taught from the get go that raw, natural foods are healthy, but that does not always hold true. There are quite a few highly respected researchers who report that not only is raw foods a bad idea, they are actually worse than a state of bulimic behavior...

#19 cjs

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 10:12 PM

apples don't make me cough,
but they do make for one hell of a burp afterwards :biggrin:

#20 cheeseandchocolate

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 11:38 PM

While we're on the topic...

Milk chocolate makes the inside of my throat itch. It's a weird burny itch. Could it be the high level of sugar? Dark chocolate, thank goodness, goes down just fine. Actually, it goes down too easily. Mmmm. :wub:
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#21 Fat Guy

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Posted 12 January 2004 - 11:54 PM

I often have a mild hayfever-like reaction to raw apples: a little sneezing, maybe itchy eyes. Never with cooked, never with peeled. I wouldn't be surprised if it's a reaction to whatever the apples are treated with. I have the reaction to organic apples as well, but as I'm sure everybody is aware organic apples are treated with pesticides and fungicides and such -- it's just that the chemicals applied are organic.

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#22 Pan

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 12:07 AM

I wasn't aware of that, in fact.

It would be interesting to know what chemicals organic farmers use on their crops.

#23 ExtraMSG

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 12:37 AM

Bologna gives me the hiccups.

#24 Fat Guy

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 01:37 AM

I wasn't aware of that, in fact.

It would be interesting to know what chemicals organic farmers use on their crops.

Well, I know the two most commonly used pesticides in the US are both organic: oil (an insecticide) and sufur (a fungicide). A good place to do some reading, bearing in mind that this group is staunchly pro-organic, is the OTA (Organic Trade Association) Web site. From their summary of the legislation covering organic farming:

Do organic farmers use any pesticides or pest control products?

Yes. Sometimes, organic farmers find that they need to use pest control products as part of an ecological farm plan. However, they may only use products included as "acceptable" in the National List.

More here

This might make an interesting, separate thread so if anybody wants to pursue the discussion please do start one.

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#25 jsolomon

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 07:48 AM

I'm somewhat surprised that so many of you are blaming the pesticides in use on apples and other fruits and vegetables for something that acts like an allergic reaction.

Keep in mind that plants also have defense systems. A lot of these defense systems have stimulating animals immune systems as their core.

Most pesticides are much to small molecularly to stimulate an immune response. The products in the body that stimulate your immune system are sized on the order of proteins. Very very large molecules (depending on your scale as a chemist). A single pyrethrin molecule is really quite dwarfed in comparison.

However, the apple, avocado, what-have-you, is from living material and does have large proteins that can cause immune response. Especially if you have a route to blood or tissue, such as an open sore in your mouth. Also, hypersensitivity does happen.

So, when I finish medical school, and people come to me with issues like this, I will (and do even now) classify them as an allergic reaction and caution people to either monitor the reaction or avoid the food.

An apple isn't worth dying for, but a life without apples is certainly a lower quality of life.
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#26 tryska

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 08:08 AM

mangoes make my lips itchy, chapped and swollen.

i'll have to google that one.

#27 sparrowgrass

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 09:08 AM

Mangoes, cashews and poison ivy are all in the same family. I am severely allergice to PI, but cashew and mangoes don't bother me. Thank heavens.
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#28 JennyUptown

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 09:13 AM

My mother is allergic to raw celery. Has been all of her life, but she loves the stuff and finds way to build up her ability to eat it.

When I was eight or so, she went into anaphyactic shock from it - lips swollen, hands itchy and finally her throat swelled shut. Still, the crazy lady eats celery. She can't imagine having a bloody mary without it.

Most of the time, she eats a little and is fine. (I watch angrily, worrying) I wonder if this is why I have such an aversion to celery, cooked or otherwise. Ha!

#29 ExtraMSG

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 12:36 PM

You should always wash your mangoes and avoid any of the goop that sometimes forms around the stem. Mangoes can give most people a rash. Never start playing with mangoes off the tree. Most should be washed that are in the store, but it doesn't mean there isn't residue.

#30 Mudpuppie

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Posted 13 January 2004 - 01:04 PM

Mangoes are, in fact, related to poison ivy. Sensitive people can have reactions to them.
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