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Saudi German Hospital Cairo  >  press releases   >  Wheat Allergy

Wheat Allergy

What is Wheat Allergy?
The Causes of Wheat Allergy
Diagnosis of Wheat Allergy
Symptoms of Wheat Allergy
Anaphylaxis and Wheat Allergy
Types of food that might cause wheat allergy
Treatments of Wheat Allergy

 

What is Wheat Allergy?

Wheat allergy is a type of the reactions of the body against kinds of food that contains wheat. It is astonishing to know that wheat is among the most types prevalent kinds of food that cause allergy all over the world.

It is simply an irregular reaction of the body of the individual who suffers from wheat allergy against one of the proteins present in wheat. This response usually begins in a few moments after consuming wheat or being exposed to wheat flour.
In most cases, the symptoms of wheat allergy occur when the patient consume wheat. However, in some cases, it may happen due to the inhalation of wheat flour. Wheat actually can be found in many kinds of food while patients don’t suspect its presence like soya sauce and ketchup.
The prevention of the consumption of wheat is considered the major cure for wheat allergy. In the cases of some patients, doctors might prescribe medications to deal with the symptoms of allergy, if the patients eat any sort of food that contains wheat unintentionally.
People sometimes get confused thinking that the symptoms of wheat allergy are that of gastrointestinal disorders. However, in the cases of wheat allergy, anti-proteins’ bodies appear in the body and cause allergy, while in several other disorders and illnesses, certain types of proteins in wheat cause abnormal responses of the immunity system.
Medical studies have proved that wheat allergy tends to be more common among children. Most people who suffer from wheat allergy get rid of it before growing into adults.

The Causes of Wheat Allergy
Any allergy in the world is an abnormal or unexpected reaction of the immunity of a person towards a substance that cause no harm to others. The immune system sometimes carries out mistakes to defend the body against harmless substances. This is the main function of the immune system; to protect the body against any strange or unrecognized bodies or threats.
In the case of wheat allergy, the immune system begins responding to the proteins inside the wheat. Immunity starts to defend the body and cause all these symptoms and problems. Whenever wheat contains, albumin, globulin, gliadin, glutenin, or gluten, or at least one of them, the immunoglobulin antibodies begin to react causing allergy.
Some patients are usually allergic to one of these proteins. However, in several cases, people tend to have allergy to two or three types of proteins available in wheat.

Diagnosis of Wheat Allergy
There are several tests and methods to identify if a person has wheat allergy or not. Some of these tests are medical, while others mainly depend on monitoring the food consumed by the patient.
Having a food diary where the person writes down everything he or she eats is one of the most successful approaches to recognize the presence of wheat allergy and its symptoms.
The most important factor in the treatment of wheat allergy is to classify the main reason behind the allergy. This is why doctors ask patients, after they record what they eat for a certain period of time, to begin eliminating all types food that contain wheat.
The second step is to begin having certain amounts of wheat products while recording everything in the food dairy. This is to recognize the food that causes the allergy. These foods are then replaced by others that don’t contain the type wheat the patient is allergic to.
Another method to know the type of food that causes wheat allergy is to carry out a food test in a hospital or specialized clinics. Patients are asked to consume certain capsules that contain suspected ingredients of food that causes allergy. The medical team at the hospital would be then monitoring the patient to view and record any symptoms or signs after consuming certain amounts of this food.
There is also the skin test when drops of watered food are positioned on the skin of the patient. This is monitor if there are any changes takin-g place on the skin like itching or swelling. Nevertheless, doctors commonly don’t depend on skin tests in the classification of wheat allergy. There are also some blood tests to be carried out in this regard.

 

Symptoms of Wheat Allergy
The symptoms of wheat allergy usually occur within minutes when patients are exposed to wheat. These symptoms are quite several and differ in their severity from one person to the other. The symptoms include: –

•    Itching and swelling in the mouth or throat
•    Skin rashes, itching, or swelling
•    Nasal congestion
•    Headache
•    Itching or tears in the eyes
•    Problems with breathing
•    Nausea, vomiting, or spasm
•    Diarrhea

Anaphylaxis and Wheat Allergy
In the cases of some patients, wheat allergy might result in a life-threating condition that is called Anaphylaxis which requires the immediate medical intervention. In addition to the normal symptoms of wheat allergy, mentioned above, Anaphylaxis would also result in the following: –
•    Severe swelling and narrowing in the throat
•    Pain in the chest
•    Severe breathing problems
•    Problems in swallowing
•    Pale skin color that might turn into blue
•    Dizziness or fainting
•    Rapid heart palpitations

 

Types of food that might cause wheat allergy
Wheat allergy mainly occurs due to the reaction of the body towards certain types of protein in the wheat. These proteins, especially gluten, might be found, in many canned food, pastries, bread, and even cosmetics.

Types of food that include wheat proteins are: –

•    Bread and rusk
•    Various types of cakes
•    Cookies
•    Cereals
•    Pasta and macaroni
•    Flour
•    Different kinds of crackers
•    Beer
•    Soya sauce
•    Some sauces like ketchup
•    Some kinds of processed meat like hotdogs and cold cuts
•    Some dairy products like ice cream
•    Natural flavors
•    Modified starch
•    Jelly beans

 

Treatments of Wheat Allergy
The most perfect solution for wheat allergy is to avoid eating types of food that include proteins contained in wheat. However, due to the presence of wheat proteins in many kinds of foods, it is highly recommended to carefully read the ingredients of various food products.

Otherwise, there are some medicines that would relief the symptoms of wheat allergy like Antihistamines. When patients eat any type of food that contains wheat proteins, they may resort to these medications as prescribed by the doctor.  It is highly advised as well not to eat fast food and processed meat as they usually contain proteins available in wheat
In the case of Anaphylaxis, Epinephrine is among the most recommended medications. Therefore, it is highly advisable for patients who would be exposed to severe symptoms of wheat allergy to have Epinephrine injections with them all the time. This is in addition to resorting to a hospital or a medical center as soon as possible.
Wheat allergy is like any other allergies. It is an irregular reaction of the immune system towards an unartful substance. The most important factor is to recognize the substance that causes the allergy. The first step towards treatment is to stop eating this substance regardless of what it is. If the problem continues or the symptoms increase, some medications would perfectly work to reduce the harms of wheat allergy.

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