Sunflower oil...is it a \"nut\" derivative?

9 replies [Last post]
By Liza on Fri, 01-12-01, 16:19

My son is 2.5 years old and is allergic to walnuts and peanuts. Recently, one of his pre-school teachers called me from school asking if he can have rice cakes. She read me the ingredients, which included sunflower oil. I was not sure if this is a nut-based oil. Is sunflower or sunflower seeds considered a nut? How about mace? Is this related to nuts? I would very much appreciate it if someone who knows would please respond...Thanks.

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By California Mom on Fri, 01-12-01, 17:29

Hi Liza, my six year old daughter is also allergic to peanuts and walnuts. She has never had a problem with sunflower oil. I have heard, though, that there can be a risk of cross contamination with some sunflower seeds. Rice cakes themselves may be a high cross contamination risk, because of the prevalence of peanut and nut flavored ones. I don't know about mace...

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By on Fri, 01-12-01, 19:48

Ditto my son - he has always been fine with sunflower oil, but I read that sunflower seeds themselves are often processed along with peanuts.

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By Liza on Fri, 01-12-01, 22:34

Quote:Originally posted by California Mom:
[b]Hi Liza, my six year old daughter is also allergic to peanuts and walnuts. She has never had a problem with sunflower oil. I have heard, though, that there can be a risk of cross contamination with some sunflower seeds. Rice cakes themselves may be a high cross contamination risk, because of the prevalence of peanut and nut flavored ones. I don't know about mace...[/b]

Thanks so much for your response. Take care.

Liza

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By rebekahc on Sat, 01-13-01, 05:19

I believe sunflower seeds are indeed seeds and not nuts. My PA kids and I have never experienced problems from sunflower oil.

Mace is the outer covering of nutmeg. Nutmeg is a seed from the inside of the fruit of a family of evergreen trees and shrubs.

Rebekah

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By rilira on Sat, 01-13-01, 17:54

My daughter is allergic to tree nuts and peanuts. She tested negative to sunflower seeds. We had her tested for sunflower seeds because it is a common ingredient in bubble baths and she gets terrible hives after bubble baths. Now we only very rarely let her take bubble baths with liquid dove soap.

Linda

[This message has been edited by rilira (edited January 18, 2001).]

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By Austins mom on Thu, 01-18-01, 02:24

how many of us have let our nut allergic children eat mace or nutmeg?? I am really curious about this as we have been avoiding these 2 ingridients forever, This would be a great burden of us if it is REALLY ok. thanks!

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By Cayley's Mom on Thu, 01-18-01, 03:34

Austins mom - Cayley eats nutmeg all the time (I put a pinch in mashed potatoes, plus homemade baked goods). She is only PA and hasn't reacted to tree nuts, but we do avoid them.

I have read in other websites that there are cases of nut allergic individuals reacting to nutmeg, but the likelihood is small - a nut allergic person may react to ANY other food, if the allergic predisposition is there. I know a girl who can't eat hazelnuts and is also allergic to peaches and carrots, for example.

I will try to find the exact site for you which describes nutmeg and the possibility of a cross-reaction to it.

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By Cayley's Mom on Thu, 01-18-01, 16:36

Austins Mom - here is an excerpt on nutmeg from an anaphylaxis site in the UK, which is moderated by an allergist:

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Does nutmeg cause reactions in nut-allergic people?
Can nut-allergic children play with acorns and chestnuts?
These are questions I have been asked a few times recently.

Comment:
I found no reference to anaphylaxis attributed to nutmeg over a five year period, and have not had or heard of any patients with this problem. Mace, which is the shell of nutmeg, may have contributed to asthma in someone who used it in making sausages, and there is some evidence for eczema in food workers due to skin contact with nutmeg. However, there seems to be no reason why people with nut allergies should avoid nutmeg.
I have found no evidence that acorns or chestnuts are dangerous for nut-allergic children or adults. Edible chestnuts do cause anaphylaxis in some people, but these are not particularly the people who react to peanuts or the other common tree nuts. Rather, such reactions are linked to latex allergy, quite a separate problem, although both problems happen in people who are 'atopic' (predisposed to common allergies).

If anyone knows of dangerous reactions to nutmeg, acorns or horse chestnuts an email with details would be welcome. Meanwhile, I would not worry about eating nutmeg, or playing with acorns or chestnuts.

References: Occupational asthma due to different spices. Sastre-J; Olmo-M; Novalvos-A; Ibanez-D; Lahoz-C. Allergy. 1996 Feb; 51(2): 117-20
Spice allergy evaluated by results of patch tests. Futrell-JM; Rietschel-RL. Cutis. 1993 Nov; 52(5): 288-90.

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Hope this helps a bit. Carolyn

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By Austins mom on Fri, 01-19-01, 00:43

Thanks Cayleys Mom,
I appreciate you finding that for me, I have heard its ok before, but never from someone who really knows about our concerns for our "special" kids. Only people who think he might get "just a rash" if he has peanuts/tree nuts, or related irritating foodstuffs, (except our family and close friends, of course, as most of them know.)I will try it now and feel confident, I'll let you know when I do it and if he reacts, thanks so much.

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