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Pollen count: life-threatening risks from cross-reactions


Dangerous cross-reactions: Minister advises allergy tests in view of the pollen count
Almost a third of German adults and around one in four children suffer from an allergy. According to health experts, hay fever is the most common form of allergy. So-called cross allergies can be dangerous, especially for pollen allergy sufferers. Bavaria's Minister of Health Huml advises those affected to take an allergy test.

Hay fever should not be underestimated
Pollen, animal hair, various foods: "Over 20,000 different triggers of allergies are known today," writes the German Allergy and Asthma Association (DAAB) on its website.

The most common form of allergy is hay fever, which can be accompanied by symptoms such as a dripping nose, swollen and itchy eyes and shortness of breath.

In some cases, simple home remedies for hay fever are enough to relieve the symptoms. But sometimes medical treatment is necessary. But you shouldn't underestimate a pollen allergy, warns Bavaria's health minister Melanie Huml.

Pollen allergy can lead to asthma
"While hazel and alder pollen allergy sufferers can breathe a sigh of relief, the pollen flight of the birch is coming soon. Ash pollen is also currently flying, ”the minister said in a statement.

“If you suffer from symptoms such as itchy eyes or dripping nose, you should definitely check with the doctor whether it is a real allergy. Because an untreated pollen allergy can even lead to asthma, ”says Huml.

In general, about 40 percent of untreated allergy sufferers have chronic bronchial asthma after eight years, the report says.

No apples and cherries during the pollen season
"Cross-allergies can also occur, such as those with birch pollen allergy sufferers who also cannot tolerate pome fruit. You should avoid apples and cherries during the pollen season, ”explains Huml, who is a certified doctor.

“Because if affected people also take in allergens through their food, this can lead to severe shock conditions that can be life-threatening. Only an allergy test can provide information here. "

According to the information, up to 60 percent of food allergies in older children, adolescents and adults are associated with inhalation allergies.

Avoid stress and alcohol
Medically necessary allergy tests are offered by general practitioners, internists and pediatricians, among others. If there is a specific suspicion of an allergic disease, the examination is a service of the statutory health insurance.

Huml added: "Factors such as an unhealthy diet, too little exercise and pollution can increase the risk of allergies."

The DAAB has further tips for people with cross allergy: Since the allergic reactions can be intensified by drinking alcohol at the same time, this should be avoided.

This also applies to stress, because: "Stress situations and stress in everyday life can influence the allergic reactions", writes the DAAB on its website.

Proper preparation
The experts also explain that the right preparation can help in some cases: “Peeling or heating makes individual types of fruit and vegetables more tolerable. Try apple compote instead of raw apples or a cherry pie as an alternative to the fresh variant. ”

And: “There are differences in variety, especially with apples. Apple varieties like Altländer, Gloster and Hammerstein are well tolerated. "

The experts recommend that you contact an allergic nutritional counselor who will look at how the patient can process certain fruits or vegetables so that they can tolerate them better.

Those affected should generally only give up as much as necessary, but enjoy as much as possible. Because a varied diet is important to stay healthy. (ad)

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