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Could My Child With Food Allergies React To Pollen or Leaves?

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My child has food allergies to tree nuts and wheat. Are there any precautions to take when hiking or going to the park? Is there a possibility that they could react to wheat pollen or leaves from a nut-bearing tree?

The leaves from nut-bearing trees do not contain relevant tree nut allergens. The food allergen is found in the actual nut. Typically, the nut protein would have to be eaten for an allergic reaction to occur. Touching these leaves would not cause an allergic reaction.

Wheat protein would also have to be eaten to trigger an allergic reaction in an individual allergic to wheat. It is possible that direct contact with wheat grain could cause local skin reactions. This includes redness, skin irritation; less likely hives at the contact site. However, it would not cause a typical food allergy reaction. This is seen after eating the food.

Food Allergy, Tree Nut Allergy, Wheat Allergy
Answered by

John M. James, MD, is a board-certified allergist. He is also President of Food Allergy Consulting and Education Services, LLC. He has worked as a medical specialist in the field of allergy, asthma, and immunology for over 30 years. Dr. James received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Tennessee. He is board certified by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology.

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