Celery Allergy?!?

Day 76, Feast Day #41

I obviously have been trying to eat more vegetables while alternate day fasting so I consume enough essential nutrients and stay full on the fiber and water on my fast days. I normally eat these veggies in a soup, salad, or sauteed. I found myself snacking on a couple plain stalks of celery, since I managed to forget to take salad dressing to work a couple days ago, when I noticed my mouth was going numb and my throat started to swell. Uh, do I have my first known food allergy?

This was not my first time eating celery or eating celery raw. In fact, I have eaten celery regularly since I started eating peanut butter on celery in elementary school. I have also eaten celery many times since I started ADF. Celery is even in my low-calorie tuna salad recipe.That is why I find this development/sudden realization really strange.

I didn't find any peer-reviewed research on why celery is giving me an oral analgesic effect. However, a Google search for this phenomenon assures me I am not the only person to experience this. There are many theories floating around on the Internet, mostly on online forums and on Yahoo! Answers (not reliable in the search for the truth), about why this happens. I have seen the eugenol in celery as a theory (I cannot verify that celery does contain this or in what amount) and other chemical reasonings. I don't believe this theory because the website most people cite as proof that celery contains the anesthetic eugenol, does not actually list celery as a notable source of the chemical in the section on eugenol. There is a reason dentists use clove oil for its eugenol. I have had eugenol used on me for a temporary filling, and the dental mixture smells and tastes like cloves. So, basically a lot of the information on the Internet about celery and this numbing sensation is less useful and less entertaining than the celery song:

My theory is that I experienced oral allergy syndrome (OAS) or Pollen-Food Allergy. OAS is a common allergic reaction caused by certain uncooked produce and nuts that develops in adults that also suffer tree and weed allergic adults (I belong to this category of adults). A cross-reaction between pollen allergens and certain foods can cause allergic reactions. Celery is known to react with alder, birch, and mugwort pollens. Not only are red alders a common tree in the Pacific Northwest, there is one on my normal route to my bus stop. I also have had terrible allergies this year, which I have complained about previously on this blog. I haven't had this problem with celery before, but I also try to take an allergy medication daily. I might have forgot to take my allergy medication that day, but I honestly don't remember. 

So, I am pretty sure I have developed a new food allergy as an adult in addition to becoming lactose intolerant. My mother, the doctor, also thinks I had the symptoms of an allergic reaction, not a run in with eugenol. Getting old sucks.

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