Buckwheat is a variety of flour that is finely ground and dark in color. This type of flour is commonly utilized in pancakes, breads and waffles as well as a substitute for individuals diagnosed with wheat allergy. Buckwheat contains large amounts of protein thus an allergic reaction is not uncommon. If the individual experiences a severe allergic reaction as well as issues with breathing, it is vital to seek immediate medical attention.
Health benefits of buckwheat
It is important to note that buckwheat can be used as a substitute for oats, rice, rye and barley. Individuals who have wheat allergy can greatly benefit from buckwheat.
Buckwheat is included in the Polygonaceae group of weeds which is a good source of fiber, minerals and vitamins. Take note that buckwheat contains eight vital amino acids including lysine, arginine, methionine, glycine, tryptophan and rutin.
Allergic reaction to buckwheat flour
The inhalation or ingestion of small amounts of buckwheat flour can result to an allergic reaction. Buckwheat contains potential allergens that trigger an allergic reaction via an IgE-mediated response.
There are a number of allergens present in buckwheat. The immune system recognizes the amino acid sequences as a threat and starts the production of IgE antibodies. The release of histamine into the bloodstream can result to signs and symptoms linked with an allergic reaction.
Signs and symptoms of buckwheat flour allergy
Inhaling or ingesting buckwheat flour can lead to severe allergic reactions among highly sensitive individuals. In case the individual ingests or inhales buckwheat flour, histamine is released which causes the following symptoms:
- Itchiness, swelling and redness of the skin
- Reddening of the lips, mouth and face
- Swelling of the throat and airways
- Abdominal pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Allergic rhinitis
- Watery and itchy eyes
- Nasal congestion
- Pink eye
- Chest tightness
- Breathing difficulty
- Difficulty speaking
- Shortness of breath
In severe cases, the individual can end up with a life-threatening allergic reaction called as anaphylaxis. Once the individual experiences lightheadedness, dizziness, swelling of the throat or airways, it is vital to seek immediate medical care.
Important considerations to bear in mind
Buckwheat flour is considered as a potent allergen. The best way to avoid an allergic reaction is to strictly avoid buckwheat and buckwheat flour. It is important to note that the allergens present in buckwheat flour are heat stable. It simply means that cooking or baking the flour will not minimize the risk for experiencing an adverse reaction.
Those who are allergic to buckwheat can safety eat wheat, rye, oat and barley. Before buying baked or bread products, the individual should carefully read the labels and ensure that the flour was milled separately from buckwheat.
In case the individual develops a mild allergic reaction, over-the-counter corticosteroids and antihistamines can help reduce the itchiness, inflammation and redness. It is vital to seek immediate medical attention if an individual experiences a severe allergic reaction.