Do You Have a Tomato Intolerance or Tomato Allergy?

Updated on January 9, 2018
Living with a Tomato Intolerance or Tomato Allergy. Tomato Allergy and Intolerance Symptoms.
Living with a Tomato Intolerance or Tomato Allergy. Tomato Allergy and Intolerance Symptoms. | Source

Tomatoes make me sick! Funny thing, sometimes the foods you love make you ill. I have been living with a tomato intolerance my entire life.

This means eating pizza, spaghetti and meatballs, and lasagna their traditional way is near impossible for me. If you suffer from a tomato allergy or intolerance, you no doubt have the same issues and have experienced a number of symptoms related to it.

The easiest way to handle such a condition is to use tomato substitutes in the recipes you love. I was delighted to know that there are ways to eat foods with a tomato taste without all the nasty side effects. Ajvar is the best substitute I have found, and I've become almost addicted to it. So I can get my Italian food fix without missing too much flavor.

But do you know which you have: an allergy to tomatoes or an intolerance? In some cases, you can have both.

Recommended Tomato Sauce Substitute

The Difference Between an Intolerance And an Allergy:

  • Allergy: Symptoms usually have a quick onset after eating the trigger food, in any amount. Affects of eating the trigger food can be dangerous and occasionally life-threatening.
  • Intolerance: The severity of illness is usually in direct proportion to the amount of the trigger food eaten. For example, a tablespoon of tomato sauce might not make you feel sick, but a full spaghetti dinner will. The more of the trigger food you eat, the more likely you are to become ill.

Patient Suffering from a Sore Throat
Patient Suffering from a Sore Throat | Source

Tomato Poll

Do you or someone you love have a tomato intolerance or allergy?

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Tomato Intolerance Symptoms

Usually takes many hours to many days after eating the trigger food to experience any of the following:

  • Sore throat
  • Losing one's voice temporarily
  • Night sweats
  • Fever
  • Sinus congestion
  • Illness similar to the common cold, yet not contagious
  • Permanent tonsil swelling (especially in cases where trigger food has been eaten intermittently over the course of one's lifetime)
  • GERD (because of acidity)
  • Leg cramps/charlie horse

Tomato Allergy Symptoms

In most cases, immediately after eating trigger food, onset of one or more of the following can happen:

  • Rashes
  • Swelling: often tongue, roof of mouth, lips, or one side of face
  • Hyperventilation
  • Puffiness under the eyes
  • Acid reflux

Mashed Avocado Dip
Mashed Avocado Dip | Source

Tomato Avoidance Tips:

  • Don't eat most soups from cans, in restaurants, or those that others prepare without being aware of your allergy or intolerance. Tomato products are often added for flavor or consistency to a bevy of common soup recipes. Soups like chicken noodle, New England clam chowder, or split pea and ham are safe bets.

  • Practice extreme care when ordering beef dishes. Tomato or tomato products are often used to heighten the flavor of sauces or gravies in these meals.

  • In Italian restaurants, order garlic and white wine sauce or Alfredo on any dishes that normally have tomato sauce on them. To eat pasta sauce at home that tastes like tomato sauce, try this versatile mild pepper sauce. I especially like to use it when making cabbage roll-ups with ground beef. I just dilute the sauce with a little bit of water to slightly thin it.

  • In place of salsa, mash up avocado and add a bit of salt to use as a tortilla chip dip.

  • Be careful in eating anything red that you didn't prepare yourself!

© 2013 Stove And Home


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  • Stove And Home profile image

    Stove And Home 4 years ago

    Me too! Be careful and Bon Appetit :)

  • annajazz profile image

    Anna Marie 4 years ago from New Mexico

    I'm not alone!lol....

    I have a really bad reaction to tomatoes.

    And It can be hard to stay away from them, since they are everywhere.

    -Great Hub :)

  • Stove And Home profile image

    Stove And Home 4 years ago

    Thanks Anatomy!

  • anatomynotes profile image

    Edmund Custers 5 years ago

    Tomato is one of the most commonly used vegetables. So, these are very useful tips for people with tomato intolerance and/or allergies.

    Thank you for sharing.