Food sensitivity reported by patients with asthma and hay fever. A relationship between food sensitivity and birch pollen-allergy and between food sensitivity and acetylsalicylic acid intolerance

Allergy. 1978 Aug;33(4):189-96. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.1978.tb01533.x.


Among adult patients with bronchial asthma and/or allergic rhinitis undergoing allergological investigation with skin test, nasal provocation test and RAST, 1129 answered a questionaire regarding food sensitivity (FS). 276 (24%) of the patients reported some kind of allergic symptoms on eating or handling various foods, of which hazel nut, apple and shell fish were the most often named. Females reported FS more often than males. A correlation was found between birch pollen allergy and FS with nuts, apple, peach, cherry, pear, plum, carrot and new potato. The higher the degree of birch pollen allergy, according to skin test, RAST or provocation test, the higher the frequency of FS. A correlation was found too between acetylsalicylic acid intolerance and FS with some foods, e.g. nuts, strawberry, almond, green pepper, hip, chocolate, egg, cabbage, milk and wine. The connection between birch pollen allergy and FS is probably explained by the structural relationship between birch pollen allergen and some allergens of the foodstuffs, whereas the high incidence of FS in acetylsalicylic acid-intolerant patients is probably explained by additives in foods as well as salicylates or benzoates naturally occurring in some food.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Allergens
  • Aspirin / adverse effects
  • Asthma / complications*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Food Hypersensitivity / complications*
  • Food Hypersensitivity / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pollen
  • Radioallergosorbent Test
  • Rhinitis, Allergic, Seasonal / complications*
  • Skin Tests


  • Allergens
  • Aspirin