It is not common to be allergic or highly sensitive to oats, but it is known to occur in some individuals. Oats are not always the issue though. Oftentimes, other components or ingredients might be the actual sources of an allergic reaction. If an individual experiences detrimental side effects after consuming oatmeal, it is best to schedule an appointment with a doctor. Remember that the symptoms can be life-threatening in some circumstances.
One of the initial reactions that an individual will notice if he/she is allergic to oatmeal are the red-colored, blotchy spots on the skin. These can manifest on the hands after handling oats, around the mouth after consuming oats or on any part of the body that came in contact with the allergen.
The red-colored patches can develop in other areas as well such as around the eyes as the oatmeal works its way through the digestive tract. Remember that these skin irritations can be itchy and crusty as well as linked with hives.
Cold and flu-like symptoms
Oftentimes, an allergy can make an individual feel as if having the common cold or flu. Right after consuming a steamy bowl of oatmeal, the nose will start to run. Sneezing, dry cough and nasal congestion will soon follow. The individual might also end up with itchy, dry mouth as well as itchy ears. It is important to note that an oatmeal allergy might also cause stomach pain and affect the digestive tract, thus making the individual feel nauseated.
Severe issues to bear in mind
In case the lips, throat or tongues start to inflame, the oat allergy of the individual might be more severe. The swelling simply indicates that the immune system is in a state of overdrive, thus resulting to the attack on the proteins present in oatmeal as if it is a threat.
Once the individual starts to experience wheezing, turns bluish in color, chest pain or has difficulty in breathing, it is best to seek immediate medical attention. The individual might be going into anaphylactic shock which can lead to loss of consciousness, weakened pulse rate and even death.
The ingredients or components in prepared oatmeal other than the oats might be the actual culprits. An example is dairy products since some restaurants prepare oatmeal by adding milk to provide it with a velvety texture. The potential side effects experienced by the individual might be due to dairy.
Oftentimes, gluten intolerance can cause digestive issues that are strikingly similar to an allergic reaction if the oats were tainted with gluten. In case the oats were not labeled as “gluten-free” and the individual has celiac disease, he/she might experience some intestinal issues. With this in mind, the individual should carefully read all labels or ask about the ingredients when eating out. A doctor should be consulted so that the ideal treatment plan can be started.