Q. Earlier this week I ate a large quantity of Brazil nuts (about 20) and suddenly began to feel a constriction in my lungs. My skin then felt very hot, and I saw in the mirror that I had turned a bright shade of red all over.
The symptoms began to recede after about ten minutes, while my husband and I were deciding whether to call a doctor, and disappeared within about 30 minutes. Apart from feeling a bit sick and shaky for a while, I have had no subsequent ill effects. Does this mean I am allergic to Brazil nuts or could I still eat them in moderation?
A. Brazil nut allergy is surprisingly common and can be just as dangerous as peanut allergy. It would be worthwhile to be tested by an allergist to determine if you are indeed allergic to Brazil nuts. If so, you will have to avoid them from here on out. Even if you weren’t allergic to Brazil nuts, eating more than a few on a regular basis could lead to a toxic dose of selenium.