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Key Allergens

Brazil Nuts are classified as tree nuts and are in the top 14 allergens which have to be declared on food packaging in Europe.

Brazil Nuts are in the Lecythidaceae family of plants, other plants in this family include the paradise nut which is found in Central and South America.

There are 2 allergens involved in allergy to brazil nuts. Ber e 1 is a 2S albumin seed storage protein and is considered to be the main allergen linked to allergic reactions. This is why most nuts are grouped together for the purpose of labelling as sufferers of this allergy are most often allergic to multiple types of tree nuts, peanuts and seeds.

Ber e 2 is an 11S globulin seed storage protein. These are often also referred to as legumins.

Food Intolerances

Food is low in histamine Food is low in FODMAP Food is medium in salicylates

Brazil Nuts are low in histamine, so are suitable for people following a low histamine diet.

Brazil Nuts are a low FODMAP food. FODMAP stands for Fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols. Foods high in FODMAPs can cause symptoms of food intolerance, affecting the gastro intestinal system and this can be mistaken for a true IgE food allergy.

Brazil nuts contain a moderate amount of salicylates. Salicylates have the potential to cause worsening of asthma, swelling, itching and hives as well as food intolerance symptoms in people who are sensitive to salicylates.

You can read more about Food Intolerances on the dedicated Food Intolerance Page.

Associated Syndromes

Brazil Nut allergy is not currently associated with any allergic syndromes.

Cross Reactivity

Other food containing 2S albumin seed storage proteins are cashews, peanuts, almonds, mustard seed, rapeseed, turnip, chickpeas, hazelnuts, pistachio, buckwheat, soya beans, sunflower seeds, walnuts, kiwi, castor beans and sesame seeds.

There is a lot of cross reactivity between 2S and 11S seed storage proteins, the only other food containing 11S proteins not mentioned above is pumpkin.

You can download a Tree Nut Allergy Factsheet from the Allergy Resources Ko-fi Shop for just $0.50 (£0.40 or €0.45). This has up to date information on which foods contain linked allergens and what foods to avoid if you think you have an allergy to tree nuts.

Please note that these food lists are not exhaustive, the most up to date information is on the Cross Reactivity Tool.



Allergen Encyclopedia - Brazil Nuts

What Are the Symptoms of a Nut Allergy?

Allergy UK - Quick Guide to Tree Nut Allergy

FARE - Tree Nut Allergy

AAAAI - Tree Nut Allergy

Anaphylaxis Campaign - Peanut and Tree nut allergies

Can You Be Allergic to Just One Type of Tree Nut?

Anaphylaxis Campaign - Brazil Nuts

Allergy information for: Brazil nut (Bertholletia excelsa)

Histamine Food List

ATP Science - Salicylate Foods

Healtline - FODMAP Foods

Articles and Journals

Prevalence of tree nut allergy in Europe: A systematic review and meta-analysis, 2024

TreEAT trial: Protocol for a randomized controlled trial investigating the efficacy and safety of early introduction of tree nuts for the prevention of tree nut allergy in infants with peanut allergy, 2023

Tree nut introduction in infants with peanut and/or egg allergy, 2023

Recent advances in diagnosing and managing nut allergies with focus on hazelnuts, walnuts, and cashew nuts, 2022

Tolerance induction through non-avoidance to prevent persistent food allergy (TINA) in children and adults with peanut or tree nut allergy: rationale, study design and methods of a randomized controlled trial and observational cohort study, 2022

Prevalence and early-life risk factors for tree nut sensitization and allergy in young adults, 2021

Defining challenge-proven coexistent nut and sesame seed allergy: A prospective multicenter European study, 2020

Tree nut allergens, 2018

Current perspectives on tree nut allergy: a review, 2018

2S Albumin Storage Proteins: What Makes them Food Allergens? 2008

A voluntary registry for peanut and tree nut allergy: characteristics of the first 5149 registrants, 2001

Sensitization to the major allergen of Brazil nut is correlated with the clinical expression of allergy, 1998

Let me know if you found any of these interesting or useful. If you spot an article or research that you think is interesting you can message me or tag me on Facebook or Twitter - links at the bottom of the page.

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