Sometimes if you have a latex allergy, you can start itching and get hives even if you haven't touched latex. That’s because when you're allergic to latex, you may also be allergic to certain foods -- and vice versa.
It’s called a cross-reaction, and it only happens to some people. If you're sensitive to latex, your body reacts to certain proteins. Some of these same proteins are found in foods. Then you get allergic symptoms like you would with latex.
Nearly a third of people living in the U.S. believe they have a food allergy, according to a recent study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association . But only 5% of children and 4% of teens and adults have true food allergies.
Why do many people think they have a food allergy when they don't?
Experts say it’s because people don’t understand what really constitutes a food allergy and they often misuse the term.
“Unfortunately, the term ‘allergy’ is sometimes used by the public...
Most people don’t have cross-reactions. But if you’re allergic to latex, you may want to be careful around these foods. And if you have allergies to any of these foods, you should tell your doctor and dentist. They can make sure you’re not exposed to latex at their offices or in the hospital.