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How Common Is a Chocolate Allergy?

Cocoa Crisis: Allergic to Chocolate?

Last week, a friend invited me over for dinner to meet her new guy, and I brought some of my refreshing chocolate sorbet. When I arrived all smiles and ready to ask a million questions as any good friend would, I couldn't believe what I found out — this new beau could not have cocoa. That's right — allergic to chocolate! After hearing that, I was the one asking him a million questions.

Apparently, chocolate allergies are pretty rare. Since chocolate is made up of several ingredients including cocoa, milk, nuts, and soy lecithin, allergies can be triggered not only by cocoa, but also by one of these other ingredients. So if you do meet someone who has an allergy to chocolate, they're most likely allergic to one of these foods as well.

Symptoms of a chocolate allergy include headaches, heartburn, hives, or difficulty breathing. In severe cases, a person can go into anaphylactic shock from eating this sweet treat. It's pretty serious, and the only way to avoid issues is to pass on the triple chocolate mousse, Hershey's Kisses, and cocoa gelato.

This is so sad to me, since I am such a lover of all things chocolate. Tell me, do you know anyone with a chocolate allergy?

Join The Conversation
15196628 15196628 3 years
I am also allergic to chocolate (milk and plain), but I can eat white chocolate. I suffer from migraines, and I had been told to cut down on the amount of chocolate that I ate. This worked for a while, but during a blind tasting game at a Christmas Party, I had some cocoa powder, which made my throat close up and I couldn't breath. Luckily, I am also allergic to wasps, so I had some medication with me, and a member of staff recognised the signs and gave me some of my medication to prevent the reaction from getting worse, so I didn't need to go to hospital.
Thundergut Thundergut 3 years
As 23yo Japanese male, I have discovered that I am part of rare crowd that cannot tolerate chocolate! I LOVE the stuff and as I am such cacao addict I have put up with resulting symptoms: Stomach cramps and diarrhoea. (No hives, no respiratory issues, no aphyxilasis or whatever hell that word is!) ONLY gastro upsets such as intestinal noise, painful cramping, followed by this 'chocolate factory' (appearance of chocolate syrup, melted ice cream or pudding, etc.) like diarrhoea stools. May LOOK like delicious chocolate, but definitely does NOT SMELL like such! In fact I must say that it is quite awful.! Now, not necessarily always (thank goodness!) but there has been couple of times of me experiencing URGENT diarrhoea thus leading to some rather very embarrassing and disgusting public diarrhoea bowel accidents! (...and NO! I definitely am NOT considered to be incontinent! No way!)! Stupid me, I went out and bought pair of WHITE running pants never expecting what was to happen next. Well, one of my accidents was in these, and total waste of money and to my chagrin, wound up having to toss these new pants out! (I simply cannot afford that sort of loss)! I never in my young life ever expected to think that I would ever have diarrhoea from eating commonly available chocolate products! We here in Japan have chocolate products quite popular (ever since Meiji Restoration during mid 19th century). No! We don't ONLY live off of fish, though I am generally pescetarian. Especially this urgent unannounced diarrhoea attacks that has been so embarrassing -- especially here in clean Japanese society! Must I really give up my love for chocolate or what? So sad.
AliceGoodnight AliceGoodnight 3 years
I have been diagnosed with multiple food and other non food allergies, since I was about 4yrs old. Chocolate being one of them. I do not get hives, anaphylatic shock, or the other read about symptoms. I get itchy-like ants are crawling all over me, ( it sucks)! irratated, not being able to focus, hyper, sore throat, stuffy nose, severe watery eyes, especially when the pollen is strong through the air. My immune system starts weakening. Some of my symptoms are a match to ADD. However, I was clinically tested for all my allergies. I am not ADD and I believe if someone is diagnosed with ADD they should get double checked with an Allergist Doctor for extra measure.
ericksons ericksons 5 years
I did my own test and sad to say, I am allergic to chocolate. I was taken off chocolate about 20 years ago because it created HORRIBLE PMS symptoms for me. Once I stopped eating it, PMS was a breeze (sort of). Anyway, I gradually reintroduced chocolate into my diet over the last few yrs, and just lately I have decided it is a demon for me. I itch, have headaches and just don't feel well. So, starting today, once again, NO MORE CHOCOLATE.
Meggieboo Meggieboo 6 years
I'm deathly allergic to chocolate. The doctors told me that next time I eat it I could most likely die. When I do eat chocolate I go into a upper respiratory infection which cause me not to be able to breath. I never had a test done for this allergie but I know for sure this is real. I'm 15 and have known for 10-11 years now. But it gets harder as life goes on because Im allergic to the cocoa bean and just recently found out that taco bells meat has cocoa in it. So many things these days have cocoa in them and it gets harder to watch what in eating.
MsChoo MsChoo 7 years
My friend used to be allergic to chocolate, luckily she isnt anymore, but now she cant eat soy.
lilegwene lilegwene 7 years
leb - nope. Just because you are allergic to something doesn't mean you automatically hate the taste.
leb357 leb357 7 years
lilegwene--I doubt your brother "convinced" himself he doesn't like chocolate. I'm allergic to beef, pork and eggs, and my sister is allergic to nuts. We both hate those respective foods and have refused to eat them since we were kids. I don't remember the last time I ate steak, hamburger or meatball, nor do I have the desire to. I don't feel like I'm "missing out" and I'm sure most people with (severe) chocolate allergies feel the same!
Spectra Spectra 7 years
I've never known anyone who was allergic to chocolate, but that would really suck! I would think that you could eat carob instead of chocolate, but it probably wouldn't be the same.
lilegwene lilegwene 7 years
One of my brothers is allergic to chocolate, nuts, wheat, eggs, seafood, and cats. It is a mystery why - 7 children and he's the only one with food allergies. Halloween we would always trade Skittles and Starburst for his chocolates. He has convinced himself he doesn't like it and therefore doesn't feel like he's missing out on anything.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
my friend was allergic to chocolate. she would get migraines so bad she'd be down and out for days. then she moved to Hungary, had some chocolate and never got a migraine. she now has turned into a chocolate fiend. we think it had something to do with an ingredient American chocolate has, but we're not quite sure what differs from the ingredients in Hungarian candy,.
Lo-Lo291303 Lo-Lo291303 7 years
My friend's allergic to chocolate. I feel sooooo badly for her!
opentypeA opentypeA 7 years
My dad and uncle both developed intolerances for chocolate later in life...which means I might be destined to that fate as well. Trying to cut back on the sweets tho anyway, so it's probably not too much of a bad thing :-P
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 7 years
I'm glad that's a rare allergy. That's one of the food allergies I'd really hate to have along with blueberries and raspberries.
sherina sherina 7 years
My cousin gets horrible migraines if she eats any kind of chocolate. At Easter she used to get all the white chocolate bunnies since it's not actually chocolate. I always felt so sorry for her.
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