The tomato (Solanum Lycopersicum) is a fruit of South American origin from the nightshade family now grown throughout most of the world. Despite botanically being a fruit, it is usually prepared and eaten as a vegetable.
A tomato is made up of approximately 95% water, 4% carbohydrates and less than 1% of fat and protein. Tomatoes are considered low in calories and a moderate source of vitamin C.
Tomatoes give an umami flavour to cooking and are consumed in many ways including raw in salads or cooked dishes, sauces, salads and even drinks. Tomatoes and tomato products can be found in a large number of processed foods.
However, some people are sensitive to this food, from being intolerant to tomatoes, to being allergic to them. Continue reading to find out more!
Tomato intolerance is where a person presents various digestive symptoms after the consumption of tomato products. A less severe condition than an allergy, this condition can still be uncomfortable and embarrassing for the individual.
Tomato Intolerance Symptoms
Common symptoms of tomato intolerance include:
These symptoms are also synonymous with a tomato sensitivity, and the key difference here is that an intolerance means your body lacks a key enzyme needed to digest this fruit. If you’ve identified tomatoes as a problem food, it could be worth getting an intolerance test.
Tomato allergies are extremely rare despite the increase in tomatoes and tomato-based products throughout the world. This allergy is likely to occur when a person comes in touch with the food. People with a tomato allergy are also likely to experience allergic reactions with other items from the nightshade family, including potatoes, tobacco, and aubergine. Those with a tomato allergy will sometimes also have a cross-reaction to latex and latex products (latex-fruit syndrome).
Tomato Allergy Symptoms
Common symptoms of tomato allergy include:
- Rash or hives
- Abdominal cramps
- Nausea or vomiting
- Narrowing of the throat
- Swelling of the face or lips
- Anaphylaxis (very rarely)
Tomato Allergy Eczema
Tomatoes are considered as an irritant for those with eczema. Although this only occurs to 10% of people with food allergies – common symptoms to look out for immediately after being exposed to tomatoes are rashes, itching, swelling and redness.
Tomato Allergy or Intolerance Diagnosis
It can be difficult to diagnose the root cause for symptoms that occur for several reasons. The easiest way to find out whether you have a tomato allergy or tomato intolerance is through a blood test. Here at Test My Intolerance, we offer blood tests for both allergy and intolerances that detect up to 80 items. Whether you want to take two separate tests or one combined test, we have you covered.
Tomatoes are a major source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to various health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also considered a good source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K and represent a key contributor to the modern diet.
Replacing key nutrients when eliminating tomatoes
It is important to use alternative items in your diet when undertaking either a short- or long-term elimination diet to maintain nutrient balance.
Below are good examples of tomato alternatives:
Sweet potato, carrots, kale, spinach, collards, Swiss chard, pak choi, butternut squash, pumpkin, cos lettuce, romaine lettuce, mango, dried apricots, prunes, peaches, melon, red peppers, tuna fish, mackerel, butter.
Orange, grapefruit, kiwi fruit, mango, papaya, pineapple, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, peppers, spinach, cabbage, turnip greens, leafy greens.
Dried apricots, salmon, mackerel, tuna, monkfish, white beans, lentils, kidney beans, avocado, butternut squash, spinach, mushrooms, bananas, potatoes.
Kale, spinach, turnip greens, collards, swiss chard, parsley, romaine, green leaf lettuce, brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage.
Folate (Vitamin B9)
Lemons, bananas, melons, spinach, broccoli, lettuce, beans, peas, lentils.
We hope our blog has been useful in explaining what tomato allergy and intolerances are, their symptoms and how to deal with them. If you’re unsure about the type of test should you take, check out our Which Test? page that will help you guide through the best test for your symptoms.
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