Typical symptoms occurring minutes to an hour or two after a food is eaten. Typical symptoms include: ones affecting the skin with hives that look like mosquito bites, swelling and itching of the skin often including lip swelling, and skin rashes; gut symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea; breathing symptoms such as throat tightness, repetitive cough, wheeze and symptoms could be severe including trouble breathing; and potentially blood circulation can be compromised leading to paleness, blue color, dizziness, confusion or fainting. In its most severe form, anaphylaxis, severe allergic reactions can be fatal.
In addition to these immediate reactions, there are a variety of symptoms and illnesses that might signal a food allergy. These are primarily persistent and chronic symptoms affecting the skin or gut. Some typical symptoms that may raise suspicion are rashes of atopic dermatitis, blood in infant stool, having poor growth and chronic vomiting, diarrhea or reflux. It is rare for food to be the sole trigger of asthma or hay fever. There is no clear evidence that food allergy causes behavioral problems, bed wetting, headaches, joint pains, fevers, infections, fatigue, or acne. There are many causes and triggers of chronic symptoms that might be attributed to food so it is important to work with your doctor, and often a Board-certified allergist, to determine a cause, whether a food or alternative explanation.