Why do I have tongue soreness after eating fruits?

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In some cases, a strange phenomenon can occur after consuming raw fruit. In such cases, the lips will swell while the mouth starts to tingle or the tongue feels itchy and sore. Even though you might suspect an allergy, the individual is likely to experience a common syndrome linked to pollen allergies.

If the individual has pollen allergies, the eyes will start to water along with runny nose and itchy throat upon inhalation of pollen during the spring and summer season. If the individual has a recognized pollen allergy, he/she can develop tongue soreness along with other symptoms right after consuming certain fruits. If a family member experiences this symptom after eating certain fruits, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible for proper assessment. If you want to learn how to manage this symptom, read here.

Tongue soreness
The reason why an individual experiences tongue soreness after eating certain fruits is due to cross reactivity.

Pollen allergy

It is a known fact that pollen is an airborne particle that is produced and released when the life of the plant is at its bloom. The pollen is lightweight and can be easily carried away by the wind to long distances. If an individual has pollen allergy during the peak season, he/she will inhale the particles and the immune system malfunctions. This will cause various chemicals to increase in the body especially histamine. The histamine is released all over the respiratory system, thus leading to the manifestation of symptoms such as asthma, throat irritation, sneezing and skin inflammation.

Cross reaction

The reason why an individual experiences tongue soreness after eating certain fruits is due to cross reactivity. The cross-reactivity is the process in the body in which the immune system erroneously perceives the proteins in fruit for a certain type of pollen. The soft tissue is the local area where the proteins get in contact to eventually release histamine causing itchiness, irritation, stinging and tingling. The indications of this type of reaction are usually minor and typically last for a few minutes. If the tongue soreness persists, a doctor should be consulted.

What are the types of fruit causing tongue soreness?

Honeydew, watermelon, bananas and cantaloupe can instigate this form of reaction if the individual suffers from ragweed pollen allergies. The birch pollen can be cross-reactive with kiwi, cherries, prunes, apples, pears, peaches, apricots and nectarines. If an individual is allergic to certain grass pollens, certain fruits such as tomatoes, melons, oranges and peaches can cause the tongue to feel itchy and sore. The individual can experience this similar reaction with certain nuts and raw vegetables.


If you will notice that there is tongue soreness every time fruits are eaten, he/she can try to cook the fruit before eating. This will change the protein structure and might not cause this type of reaction. In severe cases, allergy shots or immunotherapy can help reduce the symptoms over a long-term period.

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