Yellow Dye #5 allergy
OK - Anyone else suffer from this? I have had horrible hives head to toe for 5 months now and none of the Dr's are helping me out. I am so frustrated and desperately need some relief. I have been on Prednisone, Benadryl, Claritin, and a prescription antihistamine. Some of these help a bit, but nothing releives the hives. I am trying to avoid all soaps and foods that contain yellow dye, but I still get the hives. Can anyone shed some light on my situation? Thanks in advance.
Leave a comment...
- 11 Comments
- are you positive that's your only allergy? Is it possible there is something else that you are allergic to? How did you come to the conclusion about the yellow dye, was it from allergy tests? Just some questions to get a better feel of the situation..#1; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:02:00 GMT
- Hi KLA! I sympathize with you completely. I am allergic to ALL dyes--yellow, blue, red from external and internal sources. I can't use hair dye, have to be careful of dyes even in clothing as well, and some of the things you wouldn't think of right off the bat have food dye in them. For instance, I didn't think about barbecue sauce on chicken and about a month ago, I put some on when I was cooking and BOOM! I was covered even more so with hives because good old red 40 was in it. I was tested 6 years ago--they do the testing on your back for all external allergens and it showed that I was allergic to nickel, PPD(found in hair dye), rubber, latex--you name it, they found it!! I still have a problem with hives right now, but they're finding it might have to do with my gall bladder and the junk in my system. God bless and I hope you feel well soon--Hopeto-- PS They alternate my antihistamines: Claritin, Zyrtec, Allegra. Right now I take 1 claritin in the am and two zyrtec at nite.#2; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:03:00 GMT
- I read recently that yellow dye #5 contains sulfites. Perhaps what you REALLY have is a sulfite intolerance. If that's the case, there are alot more foods (& drinks) that you need to avoid in order to get your hives under control.#3; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:04:00 GMT
- Thank you for the reponses I have received. I had no idea that yellow dye contains sulfites. I have read about allergies to them but did not know that yellow dye contained them. I will also watch for that. Do the labels on foods say "sulfites?" What do I look for? As far as all dyes, that has crossed my mind as well. I'm thinking it has to be more than just yellow. I have testing coming up in a week for foods and outdoor allergies. Apparently you cannot test for yellow dye. Not sure about the others. My Dr called Mayo Clinic and they confirmed that there isn't a test to know for sure. Because of my testing I can't take any antihistamines to ensure an accurate test. I am a mess! I look like I have small pox or something! Plus last night I woke up with night sweats 3 times. Not sure if that is related or not. I do have other sinus type allergies, but nothing has ever been this bad. The derm. figured my new yellow dye allergy was set off because I changed 2 meds I was on to their generic form and the pills were yellow. I have since changed back, but I'm not getting better. Thanks again and I'll let you know what happens!
-KLA;)#4; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:05:00 GMT
- It took me over 15 years to discover a yellow dye allergy.
I am allergic to aspirin and nsaids...the yellow dye allergy sometimes goes hand in hand with that.
I have problems with many preservatives, yeast extracts, MSG. I read ingredient labels religiously and am surprised at how many foods have artificial dye in them.
Baked goods, ice cream, pudding mixes, any colored candy, most cheesey snackfoods, drink mixes, etc,etc,etc
I had to go on a very strict home cooked diet, no prepared food, convenience food, cold cuts etc for a while to calm my system down. I did an elimination diet twice to narrow down the causes of my itching, swelling and hives.
It is difficult and frustrating work but worth it if you can control the problem without meds which seem to do little for the hives anyway.#5; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:06:00 GMT
- Wow! Here I thought I was in misery for my 5-6 months of swollen hives. I need to remember that things can always be worse! I like the idea of going on an elimination diet, but I'm not sure where to start. I THINK I have eliminated yellow dye from my diet and soaps etc. but eating out is hard. I suppose I should just not do that for a while. I don't know what else to eliminate. Any ideas? Thanks for your insight!
KLA#6; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:07:00 GMT
- Look up Elimination Diet in an internet search. No processed food, usually eliminate the most frequently allergenic foods such as milk, wheat, citrus etc.
I went on a very clean diet; no sugar, only filtered water, meat with no hormones, lots of veggies, rice, greens, beans.
You slowly add food groups back, one at a time for usually 4-5 days and note any reactions, if none add another food group back. Tedious , difficult, but it works.
You are supposed to try to eat foods on a rotation basis and foods that you didn't eat much before, that is how I found my sunflower seed allergy, started adding them to my diet and reacted!
There is also a belief that our american diets cause too much acidity which makes allergies worse. Not sure about that but I do note when I eat well I feel much better all the way around.#7; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:08:00 GMT
- Maybe you are allergic to something else in addition to yellow dye. My best friend suffered with hives breakouts for several years from an undetermined cause. She was hospitalized twice because her throat swelled up. She went through a battery of medical tests and she tested negative for everything. She finally found a good allergist who determined she is allergic to methylchloroisothiazolinone which is a preservative in soaps (Aveeno), creams, shampoo, etc.
Once after eating at a Chinese restaurant she needed to be hospitalized for a swollen throat, and I would bet anything that the methyl. somehow got into the Chinese food. China manufactures methyl. and there are warnings not to contaminate food products with methyl. that are made in the same factory as cosmetics, so I guess it's entirely possible that methyl. can get into the food supply!
I have been upset about all the genetically modified food products on the supermarket shelf, it's estimated that 70% of our food products are GMO's, with soy, corn, canola oil, and cottonseed oil having the highest percentage of modification. One article I read stated that even if you stop eating the offending food, the modified protein can stay in your intestines for years causing health problems! GMO's are big causes of allergic reaction, especially in children, and the products aren't labeled! Our food supply is a disgrace, and from now on, I refuse to purchase GMO's. I am only going to shop at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods.
I hope you find the cause of your hives, I sort of know how you feel because I went through it with my friend. Since she has stayed away from methyl. she has not had even one breakout with hives.
One more thing, Mom's boyfriend gets hives and has been hospitalized for it, but we determined he is allergic to cilantro, and he has not had another attack since he stopped eating it. I have complained to several stores who do food demonstrations that they should make customers aware of any allergens present in the food.
Good luck to you.#8; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:09:00 GMT
- Hi KLA! Just my two cents--Had my gall bladder out last week and began to have hives again from what I believe is the acid in my system. I took a loratadine(Claritin) and a famotidine (acid reducer--Pepcid) and feel much better. Together they took the hives away faster than just the antihistamine alone. I though of you the other day when I had something with that wonderful Yellow #5 and broke out! Take care--Hopeto#9; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:10:00 GMT
- Hi Hopetofeelwell:
I was wondering if you are on statin drugs for cholesterol, like Lipitor, since that class of drug can cause gall bladder problems.
Wishing you a speedy recovery.#10; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:11:00 GMT
- I too followed an elimination diet as suggested in a handbook I purchased from a medical bookstore at the suggestion of my doctor. I had completed 6 weeks with little or no wheat and was starting dairy elimination when my symptoms cleared up. In the end I narrowed the problem to Yellow Dye No. 5 (coal tar) used to color snack foods, cheese and cheese flavored products, candy, ice cream, cake, etc. I've read that some green products like peas are a mix of Yellow Dye No. 5 and Blue Dye. Yellow Dye No. 5 is often found in detergent, soap, shampoo, as coloring on oranges and lemons, in fruit drinks, etc.
To me it is not so much an allergy as it is a chemical burn. My fingertips look like I have athlete's foot. My fingertips can become dried, cracked, have tiny blisters, and will eventually crack open like a paper cut and bleed. I know two woman who lost fingernails when the condition became bad enough. Somehow Tinactin spray for athlete's foot seems to help control the blistering and bleeding.
The next worst side effect is mouth sores. Sometimes I have as many as 7 or 8 tiny open sores in my mouth, on my tongue, and in my throat. It's from contact with the Yellow Dye. It shows up within a day or so of eating the yellow dyed product. This time it was a pumpkin flavored doughnut (orange).
Another side effect is that I become sluggish, tired, and cranky. Sometimes I get headaches. I suspect there's some blurring of my vision although it's subtle. These side effects can linger for several days.
I find it easier to simply buy fresh fruits and vegetables, eat wholesome meats, whole grain breads, and "real" cheeses. The snack foods and candy are probably of no genuine benefit anyway and I don't miss them. Sadly I cannot peel and orange and I remove lemon wedges from my iced tea with a fork when I eat out. I think it's odd that restaurants stick lemon wedges on my tea that has poison (to me) on it.
My research suggests that large vats (perhaps entire cargo ships) of coal tar are shipped from India to the USA for food coloring. A little bit goes a long way. My theory is that sometime in the past 20 years the source of coal tar into this country changed. I did not have a problem with Yellow Dye No 5 twenty years ago. Of course I know lots of people who developed allergies to things they'd eaten without incident for years.
God help you if you're trying to read the labels for dyes. The FDA apparently believes that if it only bothers 1 in 10,000 then it's not a problem. I guess we could say the same for murder and arson? Well, if you're the ONE then IT'S A PROBLEM! Like I said, it's easier to eat healthy and the folks who mismark their packages can go bankrupt for all I care.
Hope this little bit of info helps one of you identify your protagonist.
:blob_fire:#11; Tue, 18 Dec 2007 22:12:00 GMT