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Allergic to shellfish

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 25, 2011 at 2:25 AM

Hi Everyone -

I'm allergic to shellfish, but the worst one is shrimp. Perhaps asking a naive question, is there anything I can do to eat them? I would love to be able to eat Shrimp and Lobster, not only for the taste, but the protein and variety.

Thanks.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on August 04, 2012
at 05:36 AM

My BF did a similar thing- started off rubbing prawns in his lips, letting it swell then go down, then moved on to putting it in his mouth and spitting it out etc. He is no longer allergic and did this when he was pretty young but I would NEVER recommend this because it is so high risk. Could have gone wrong at any time.

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on July 25, 2011
at 01:08 PM

FWIW, I've spoken to a couple people who have shellfish allergies whose allergists have told them that there _are_ treatment options in the form of shots, though they're not typically recommended.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on July 25, 2011
at 03:42 AM

Yes, each can be worse than the last, but also allergies can and do tend to go away and come back on their own. I have a friend who was allergic to eggs for years, then suddenly wasn't. On the flip side, I recently went to Mexico with a girlfriend who had zero allergies and almost died after dinner (the day we arrived) with a severe anaphalactic (sp?) shock reaction, hives and vomiting. 24 hours in the hospital and a $1600 hospital bill later, she spent the rest of the trip scared of eating seafood period, since they couldn't pinpoint exactly what it was at the time.

6b72eeb3f0c98b487f712efcb5092c90

(293)

on July 25, 2011
at 03:04 AM

+1 for the reminder that each allergic reaction is potentially worse than the previous one.

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9 Answers

5
6670b38baf0aae7f4d8ac2463ddc37c0

(3946)

on July 25, 2011
at 02:38 AM

Hi Jason, in discussing food allergies with my doctor, there does not seem to be a remedy. There are no shots for food allergies. It is best to completely avoid shellfish if you are allergic, as a reaction can have extreme to deadly consequences, and each reaction can be worse than the last.

016de26fe61daf799662d3b7b2468324

(688)

on July 25, 2011
at 03:42 AM

Yes, each can be worse than the last, but also allergies can and do tend to go away and come back on their own. I have a friend who was allergic to eggs for years, then suddenly wasn't. On the flip side, I recently went to Mexico with a girlfriend who had zero allergies and almost died after dinner (the day we arrived) with a severe anaphalactic (sp?) shock reaction, hives and vomiting. 24 hours in the hospital and a $1600 hospital bill later, she spent the rest of the trip scared of eating seafood period, since they couldn't pinpoint exactly what it was at the time.

6b72eeb3f0c98b487f712efcb5092c90

(293)

on July 25, 2011
at 03:04 AM

+1 for the reminder that each allergic reaction is potentially worse than the previous one.

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on July 25, 2011
at 01:08 PM

FWIW, I've spoken to a couple people who have shellfish allergies whose allergists have told them that there _are_ treatment options in the form of shots, though they're not typically recommended.

1
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on July 25, 2011
at 02:04 PM

Have tried had crawfish or langoustines without a problem? I only suggest these as I'm allergic to crab and not shrimp which apparently is a bit unusual as they go hand-in-hand as an allergy.

Be careful if you do try these. I'm not sure if there is any food tasty enough to get sick and/or die for. Good luck!

1
25329057c9d5f6364a74787c8c2302e7

on July 25, 2011
at 05:28 AM

Depending on how severe the reactions are, you could always try slowly stepping up the dosage. Start with 1/25th of a shrimp and incrementally increase. I've heard of clinical trials 'curing' peanut allergies this way, starting with as little as 1/10,000 of a peanut or something equally insane.

Don't blame me if you die though :/

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on August 04, 2012
at 05:36 AM

My BF did a similar thing- started off rubbing prawns in his lips, letting it swell then go down, then moved on to putting it in his mouth and spitting it out etc. He is no longer allergic and did this when he was pretty young but I would NEVER recommend this because it is so high risk. Could have gone wrong at any time.

0
7b54d0798a8f7af2ad5663ce8ea42f01

on August 04, 2012
at 02:02 AM

Muscles and oysters are not shellfish, they are mullusks

0
Dfba14aa4980f091ebc9e99719efd2ef

(123)

on July 26, 2011
at 12:57 AM

My wife has had a reaction to shellfish since she was 15, but through paleo eating building gut flora, she can now consume very small amounts with little to no reaction. So at worst, she can still be around and touch other peaple who are eating it at the time.

We did this by initially just following a strict paleo diet for a time being to reduce inflammation, plus vit d, and fish oil. From there building up gut flora through fresh garden veges, and some fermented dairy. Then bringing in exposure to shellfish, so having different types of seafoods and seaweed, I would have some shellfish and she would just touch the shells. Played with that for a few months, noticed no reaction, so dosed her up on some Vit C (for antihistamine action) and she tried a tiny amount, all good, slight tingling on the lips. waited a while a week and tried the same thing, whole prawn (shrimp) this time, similar reaction. Almost no reaction to eating muscles and oysters if they are fresh.

So we are now at the point that she can eat some shell fish such as muscles and oysters, and can be around others eating shrimp, lobster etc. with out a problem.

0
1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

on July 25, 2011
at 03:25 PM

Have you considered trying the GAPS protocol for a year or two and then trying the minute increments method that some others above mentioned? Some allergies are a leaky gut issue, so I hear. In either event, it's nothing to be playing around with casually. http://gapsdiet.com/

0
345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on July 25, 2011
at 01:40 PM

I had an natural allergist in Costa Rica who made these drops for me of the things I was highly allergic to, its to slowly building up a tolerance.

Obviously it contained the very thing you are allergic to, you start with a tiny amount and gradually work up over time. I was deathly allergic to corn but now can tolerate it in small amounts without the anaphalictic issues.

I'm still deathly allergic to bees, we reduced my intolerance to them slightly, but he said it was something that would always be an issue for me.

So I guess there are some things they can reduce your intolerance to and others not.

0
6b72eeb3f0c98b487f712efcb5092c90

on July 25, 2011
at 03:03 AM

The only thing that would probably help is loading yourself up with antihistamines or possibly epinephrine depending on the severity of your allergy. But even taking that route, you're risking a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction, and it's unlikely your doctor would prescribe the necessary medications if you told him what you planned. Adding shellfish to your diet isn't worth the risk. There are plenty of other foods you can choose from.

0
Ab19df3ededa28f7bf7daeba8435b205

on July 25, 2011
at 02:47 AM

Question for u. Is this any type of preparation or only fried?

I only ask because as a child I was only allergic to fried shrimp. I am not sure if this is true but I heArd that frying did something different to the shrimp that plain steaming didn't (and no I wasn't allergic to the batter)

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