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Can you be allergic to meat?

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
A friend's coworker has been veg for years & she says it is because she's "allergic to meat."



Now... I have never heard of such a thing - can this actually be true? I asked the woman if she just said that to avoid the spanish inquisition but she said no, she's allergic to every kind of meat out there.



I just don't see how you could be allergic to fish, shellfish, pork, fowl, beef, etc...



Anyone else ever run across this? I'm not going to say anything to her either way, I am just curious since it seems completely implausible to me - yet she insists on it.







amy
post #2 of 34
Never heard of it either. What are her symptoms when she did eat meat - who diagnosed her? Seems fishy (no pun intended)
post #3 of 34
I think some people on here are actually allergic to meat.. I've heard of being allergic to shellfish, mostly... It seems to be the most common allergy to meat out there.. But yes, it is possible to be allergic to meat, or anything else really.
post #4 of 34
I can see how you would be allergic to one thing, for example as Fafa mentioned shellfish, but can you actually be allergic to ALL meats? Is there something common in all of them that could make you allergic to them? It seems possible that you can be allergic to different kinds, but all kinds seems strange.
post #5 of 34
Yes, you can be allergic to meat. Or not have the right enzymes to digest it. ANY and ALL of it. Not sure if it's the same thing or not...



My mom's friend/boss at work, Keith, has been vegetarian for ever (I think) because he's actually allergic to meat.



I was behind a lady at an Edo Japan whatever place at a mall and she said she couldn't have any meat, cos she lacks the enzymes to break it down, and it'd do really nasty things to her.



Again, not sure if it's the same thing, or if people who lack enzymes are told they're allergic, or it's actually an allergy... But yeah. There's "allergic" and/or "unable to eat it" either way.....



Hmmm... curious if it's the same thing or not, now....
post #6 of 34
I know someone who also claims to be allergic to certain meat. He is apparently allergic to all poultry. I think there was one other meat too but I don't recall what it was.

It made me wonder if he was truely allergic to the meat or maybe allergic to something poultry is injected with or something it's cleaned with or whatever. Maybe not now that I read your posts. Maybe it really is the meat.

He and his wife told me that his reaction is that his throat swells shut. He has to carry an epi pen with him at all times. They eat out a lot (brave souls) and encounter chicken broth in things even when they are assured that it is vegetable or beef based. She has to rush him out to the nearest hospital in the middle of their dinner more often than they'd like. Obviously this makes the restaurants feel really bad so then they get free meals.
post #7 of 34
Yes, you definitely can be allergic to all meat.



I have a friend who goes into shock if she eats any kind of meat- the last time was when she was a kid and she definitely does not need a repeat of that!
post #8 of 34
I knew a man who was allergic to so many foods it was really sad...he couldn't eat most fruits, veggies, chocolate, and I think meat as well.
post #9 of 34
Thread Starter 
that's interesting, strawberry - what is it that causes the reaction, do you know? Is it an inability to digest or an allergic reaction? My friend's coworker just says that she gets hives & throws up a lot... I knew you could be allergic to one thing (like shellfish) but... all meats?



my aunt is allergic to the preservatives put in some meats (like cheap ground beef)... but not the meat itself...
post #10 of 34
It's not uncommon. Allergists include different meats in their tests and the meats are listed on the form that indicates the level of sensitivity to the food. For instance, I am dangerously allergic to a number of foods. I'm at least moderately allergic to roughly half the foods on the Food Skin Test Panel, and nearly 3/4 of the aeroallergens on the Aeroallergen Skin Test Panel. You should have seen my back during the observation period. It was freaky. My tests revealed the following:



(scale gives you an idea how strong the reaction is)



REDNESS MEASUREMENT (0 - 4)



0 = 0 - 10mm

1+ = 11 - 20mm

2+ = 21 - 30mm

3+ = 31 - 40mm

4</= 40mm



SWELLING MEASUREMENT (A - D)



A = less than 4mm

B = 5 - 10mm

C = 10-15mm

D = more than 15mm



I'm leaving off everything under 2B here:



Beef = 2B

Clam = 2B

Cod = 3D (ties sesame for biggest welts)

(Cow's Milk = 2B)

Crab = 2C

Turkey = 2B



peanuts had the largest redness, and a pretty good-sized welt to go with it (4C)



Welcome to my nightmare.
post #11 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by epski View Post

seen my back during the observation period. It was freaky. My tests revealed the following:

................................

peanuts had the largest redness, and a pretty good-sized welt to go with it



Welcome to my nightmare.



Whoa - Epski. I don't know what to say excpet - sorry! I bet it's a real challenge.
post #12 of 34
Most allergies are allergies to proteins. (Gluten is a prime example) So I'd assume that you can be allergic to meat.
post #13 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lacykitten View Post

Yes, you can be allergic to meat. Or not have the right enzymes to digest it...



This was an argument from my stepmother about why I should be careful as a veg. She said that someone she knew stopped eating meat, and his stomach stopped producing the enzymes to digest it. So now he has to have some sort of shot on a regular basis. Hmmm.
post #14 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by christy13 View Post

This was an argument from my stepmother about why I should be careful as a veg. She said that someone she knew stopped eating meat, and his stomach stopped producing the enzymes to digest it. So now he has to have some sort of shot on a regular basis. Hmmm.



Yeah, and it's similar with dairy as well - which is why I'm always so confused about how people can be veg for YEARS and then go back to eating meat and/or dairy..



Cos the couple times I've accidentally ate meat or dairy, it was AWEFUL and painful and not very pleasant in the washroom - to say the least.



How can people put themselves through that kinda thing long enough to go back to eating meat and/or dairy? I never could.



But then, I guess some people don't develop the allergies or stop producing the enzymes, cos some people I've seen on various boards (not entirely sure which ones) say "I'm vegan but if I'm on vacation or something I might go lacto and/or ovo for ease" and stuff - and I'm like "How??? I thought I was DYING from ONE BITE...."
post #15 of 34
My fibromyalgia patients complain about quite lot of allergies, which sometimes aren´t allergies but food intolerances, but anyway I have scanned quite a lot of people for allergies and none complained about a meat allergy up to now. As Loki said, it should be possible, but why doesn´t it happen more often?
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post #16 of 34
Yes, it's possible. One can also have adverse reactions to the antibiotics that are commonly used in cattle and chicken production.
post #17 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeyandbunny View Post

Yes, it's possible. One can also have adverse reactions to the antibiotics that are commonly used in cattle and chicken production.



Hmm. Which ones are used? I know that there are many people with antibiotic allergies (penicillin, for example). Scary.
post #18 of 34
When I was first tested for my food allergies (in a method simular to Epski's), I was told that "anything can do anything". It could be the meat itself, a protien or compound within the meat, or it could be a reactions to the steriods, growth hormones, bulk enhancers or dyes that people taint the meat with before it goes to market. Anything can do anything.



I just wish the FDA would recognize meat allergies as a valid occurance and include them in the "FDA 8" (FDA's 8 recognized common food allergens). It would be nice to read a lable and have in dark print this product contains beef, milk, soy, wheat for example. For those that suffer, it would make their lives a lot easier because nothing's worse than missing something and having reactions from it later.



Epski, I feel for ya, guy. I thought I was bad off, but you... oh, man. I feel for ya, that's all I've gotta say. I truely feel for ya.
post #19 of 34
Thanks.



For the record, btw, I had those allergies before going vegan. I'd be curious what my response would be now. I've been taking shots for over a year now, and I think they may do another skin test again when my injection course is completed. If so, I'll try to remember to do a comparison here. Might be interesting for... well, a couple of us anyway.
post #20 of 34
Many people are highly allergic to shellfish. The reaction is much like a peanut allergy in which the person could experience anaphylactic shock. My grandmother was this way. What's more, there is a type of bacterial food poisoning, called scromboid, found in fish that mimics a severe allergic reaction. I was once hospitalized for this after eating a tuna burger in a restaurant. I think that meat in general invites many problems because you are eating what that animal ingested or was treated with, or bacteria it contracted. The chances are much higher than contracting something from veggies or fruit although that is entirely possible. Most of the time when people think they are suffering from some type of stomach "flu", they are actually experiencing some type of bacterial food poisoning which was directly consumed with a food they ate.
post #21 of 34
I know a fellow who is or bacame allergic to several types of meat, including beef and pork, I believe. He is also allergic to garlic, which is a shame because he is of Italian ancestry and now has to change his whole diet. It is also bad because almost all processed vegetarian foods are flavored with garlic.
post #22 of 34
**Yeah, and it's similar with dairy as well - which is why I'm always so confused about how people can be veg for YEARS and then go back to eating meat and/or dairy..**







I'm the same way, LacyKitten. Even trace amounts of dairy can get me pretty sick. On the other hand, my boyfriend went vegan with me back in the day, but then went back to eating dairy and he didn't have any problem. (Maybe he was sneaking dairy when he said he was vegan...)
post #23 of 34
I've been dairy-free for two years, and small amounts of dairy ingested accidentally don't cause me any problems.
post #24 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lacykitten View Post

Yes, you can be allergic to meat. Or not have the right enzymes to digest it. ANY and ALL of it. Not sure if it's the same thing or not...



Quite different. The former invloves the immune system, the later doesn't. In practice, an intolerance (not abe to digest, or similar problem) can be similar in symptoms to a mild allergic reaction, but the causes and treatment are very different. Plus, the distinction is lost on many people, so the term allergic gets used to cover both bases.



You can be allergic to virtually anything. It doesn't have to be proteins - consider the nickel allergy for a (relativly) common non-protein allergy [0]. epski's given solid evidence for the existance of allergies to meat - although I will suggest that such an allergie is less common than a reaction [1] to dairy, wheat or egg - based of my experince with groups of atopic people [2], and the fact that the question was raised.



I'll note that food based allergies are notorious to diagnose - the accepted test is skin contact (like epski outlined), and not based on consumption. This makes pinning such a thing down without medical assistance tricky.



Stuey!



[0] This is common enough that it's illegal to put nickel containing alloys in contact with broken skin for extended periods. The most common example of this is in new piercings.



[1] Yup, I'm hedging here by including intolerances.



[2] atopy is a condition that results in many allergies.
post #25 of 34
some people who's peancreas qdoesnt create the proper enzynes to diagest meat often refer to themselfs as allergic to meat. accully if thats the case many prescriptions taken with meals can corect that ( such as creon)
post #26 of 34
Happened upon this chat board - just for the reason you are discussing - I have been suffering from a "meat allergy" for over a year now. Started as stomach flu symtoms that would not stop - days rolled into weeks and months of daily mornings of sever vomiting and other unmentionables, all subsidding by mid day. Doctors told me it was a number of things that as time went by did not pan out, and after test upon test, with no results other than being perfectly healthy - my husband and I started our own diagnosing and food eliminations. Already with the knowledge that I am allergic to all oral antibiotics and artifcial sweetners, we started cutting out beef, with great results, then a few weeks later symptoms returned, so we cut out all fowl, and again, better - then a few weeks later symptoms returned, then cut out all meat & meat products including dairy - no more symptoms. The entire year long struggle has finally came to me living on fruits, veggies, pastas, and seafood - go figure one of the most common food allergens and I can have it over all others - anyway - this is what we have come up with - I am allergic to "oral" antibiotics - all meats are saturated with antibotics from the "growers" - over time my body has lost the ability to digest the proteins and additives in all meats - so it could be either, or both for many people that cannot eat meat - saying "allergic" to meat is generalized because our health system does not know how to diagnose it and how to prevent it - good luck to all who suffer from this and all allergies - this has been one of the worst years of my life - but now getting better and found a whole new appreciation for food - and realizing just how bad meats and dairy really are for your body.
post #27 of 34
One of my friends is allergic to beef.
post #28 of 34
I just spotted this thread.



What are symptoms of meat allergy?
post #29 of 34
I am not allergic, but I could never digest meat properly--gave me all kinds of problems that got worse as I got older. Even as a baby I refused my baby food meats (imagine that....UGH!) Initially that is why I gave up meat 10 years ago, but as I learned more that progressed into a more complex reason for not using ANY animal products, which is where I'm at now.
post #30 of 34
Ok for those who are truly allergic and not in a humourous frame of mind, please ignore the following...



My family has been semi-vegetarian for the past year, and fully veg since January 3. Yesterday, my 11-year-old son came up to me and said, "Mom, I think my stomach is rebelling against junk food now (he had been eating a rare bag of chips); my stomach is so used to the lentils and beans and good food that when it gets some junk food, it just says 'hey wait a minute, I'm not dealing with this sh*t' and I throw up. I had the same problem at XX's birthday party, where we had pizza, and I only had two slices"

He actually said this!!!

Life-threatening anaphylactic allergies aside, maybe some intolerances are a good thing?

Can't imagine being allergic to garlic though! Man, that would be tough!
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