Maybe It's Bromelain!

Spent this morning at the doctor's office, getting a referral to an allergist, to figure out what I've eaten twice within the past week to cause my tongue, mouth (and, more frighteningly, my throat) to swell up.  The kicker is that the most recent occurrence (at last night's party) was, well, at a freaking party, where I'd eaten small amounts of approximately twenty different things, in addition drinking at least three different beverages.  This did not make narrowing things down any easier, especially since some of those things I ate were things-made-of-many-things.

That being said, I told the doctor that I figured it was either something in a ground sausage type thing, or tree nuts.  Or, I added as an afterthought, pineapple, which had been present in the ground sausage type things.

"Ah," his face relaxed.  "I'm still sending you to a specialist, but I'd lay my money, as it were, on the pineapple."*

And then he prescribed me some steroids.  Woo!

The allergist's office won't call until the actual business week, obviously, but in the meantime I've busied myself like the good little 21st century patient I am by reading allllll about pineapple allergies.

Which led me to discover that pineapples (which I love, by the way) essentially are doing their best to digest you while you're eating them.  Say what?  It's true.  They have a little enzyme called bromelain that breaks down proteins.  You know, like the muscle that is your tongue.  It's used commercially as a meat tenderizer, if that tells you anything.  So lots of people tend to feel a bit of a tingling when they eat pineapple (I have myself, in the past) but I guess the bodies of some lucky so-and-so's get all suuuuuper sensitive about it.  Like giant jerks.

It was actually kind of a relief to find out about that, because one of the things bothering me about my "allergic reaction" was that I wasn't just swelling: I felt like I'd burned everything- tongue, mouth, tonsils, throat.  Burned to the point where I currently have no sense of taste, even.  It got me wondering if I'd somehow chemically burned myself on some spices in the sausage, but the whole pineapple-attempting-to-digest-me thing makes a lot more sense.

Of course, we'll wait and see what the specialist says, but in the meantime I'll be over here, not eating pineapples.

*all hail a doctor who actually listened to me, by the way.

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