I Love 'Em, But Can't Eat 'Em!

by Melissa Webster
(Walla Walla, WA)

I've discovered that I'm very allergic to morels after eating them 3 times years apart and every time having more of a reaction. The last time I only ate a tiny bit in a sauce and experienced severe intestinal distress within just a couple hours, lasting for about 12 hours. I did not pick them myself, but used some I bought in a store the first two times. The last time I ate the tiny bit in a restaurant, and my family ate the same dish and had no trouble.

Now I envy those people who can eat morels with abandon! But wonder if I should eat ANY wild mushrooms. I've been avoiding any dishes that state wild mushrooms are included. What do you think?

Comments for I Love 'Em, But Can't Eat 'Em!

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All mushrooms
by: Anonymous

I have never had a morel before, but I cannot eat anything that has touched a mushroom without getting violently ill. It gets worse each time I eat something with mushrooms in it. I even got sick when a friend had mushrooms on her pizza and they cut her pizza first. The stomach pain is the worst I've ever experienced and it comes along with sweating, vomitting, intestinal pain, diarrhea, and fainting. I had never fainted before developing a mushroom sensitivity.

addendum
by: Iowa Mushroom

Also, the undigested sugars pull fluids into small intestine through oncotic pressure. This happens quickly and cause many of the immediate symptoms

stomach ache and Morels
by: Iowa Mushroom

The GI symptoms are not really an allergy. Some people lack an enzyme needed to break down certain sugars that Morels are high in. The sugars are then available to intestinal flora (good bacteria) that eat them with abandon and cause those oh so unpleasant sx. Cooking them thoroughly, limiting amount consumed will help. Maybe beano but I have not tried that

I developed an allergy to them😪
by: Carole

I too had grown up hunting and eating morels, now I just hunt them and cook them for others. I still enjoy finding them, but I definitely miss their wonderful taste. My reaction was different though - my tongue swelled all up and was very painful. I had no idea what was wrong, but my dr asked if I had been eating morels. Apparently you can develop an allergic reaction over time. Not believing this was the cause (HOPING and still in denial) I decided to throw some in a pot of veggie soup. Unfortunately the same thing happened.
My dr did say that if I went several years without eating them, I might be able to enjoy a few without any problem but I'm too afraid now. It was really painful and scary!

Allergy without Eating
by: Anonymous

I am pretty sure that I am allergic to these things, but have never even eaten one. The closest I got was being in the same kitchen where they were being prepared. Just the smell made me so sick I started to vomit. I can detect this smell anytime they are being cooked and have to get to fresh air now. Sounds strange, but its something they give off.

Love them, they hate me!
by: Gerie

I have eaten Morel mushrooms since I was a child. I am 67 years old. Last year I thought that I had intestional flu after eating morels. I was ill with N & V for 2 days. This year I fixed morels in butter and white wine. Yummy! Grandson and husband also ate them. I ate only maybe one sliced and well cooked. Well 2 hours later, my husband found me on the bathroom floor saying "take me to the ER" Terrible cramps I can only think of as labor pains. Diarrhea and vomiting. When we got to the ER 20 minutes later, I could not even stand, needing a wheelchair. MD said I was dehydrated and after what I believe to be morphine drip, 1 hr later I seemed to be almost myself. He gave me anti-nausea med to take home. $1500 bill that insurance paid. I think I am like the smoker who quits. I want a morel...

Similar Mushroom reaction
by: Anonymous

I too can no longer eat morel mushrooms. I had the same experience, it got worse each time I ate them, and the last time I thought I had a case of food poisoning. I never had problems in the past, but suddenly I started to become sick in my late 20's. It wasn't until after the 3rd time in the same year, when I was violently sick my husband realized it was the mushrooms causing it.

I can eat button mushrooms without issues. Morels put me over the top. I even tested the theory by eating just one bite of a cooked morel and can safely say I can never eat them again. :-(

I also can no longer eat the large mushrooms they grill and make into a "burger". Are they portobello? They are not as severe as the morel, but still cause gastrointestinal distress. And if I eat any buttons within a week or two of the portobello they will give me gastrointestinal distress as well. Seems the occasional exposures can only be button mushrooms. All others are off my list now.

Morels
by: Morel lover

Several years ago I had a terrible episode hours after eating morels. I have eaten morels my entire life, 50 years. The episode included extreme vomiting, sweating, fever, the feeling of knife through my back...I wanted to go the the ER, but living an hour from a hospital, I would never have made it. My husband called my mom and she came to check on my. I was almost delirious. I can eat other mushrooms with no problem. I am petrified to try a morel. My husband is cooking wild morels from our woods right now. I am afraid to to try them.

allergic to morels
by: Jane Perinacci

What a pity. As a retired medical assistant, I would suggest getting an allergy test. I can't imagine a steak without mushrooms! My heart goes out to you!

Bummer!
by: Amy

Sorry to hear about your problem, Melissa. Unfortunately an allergy to mushrooms is not uncommon. If you do a Google search on "mushroom allergy" you'll see what I mean.

It sounds like you've covered everything I would have questioned. I'd ask you if you were sure they were morels, but it sounds like you got them in a few different places including a store. I'd ask you if they were cooked, but it sounds like they were. I'd ask you if you only ate a little, but you did.

It's also not great that your reaction worsened every time. Escalating allergies aren't something you want to mess around with. I always err on the side of caution when it comes to stomach stuff, so if I were you I would probably avoid mushrooms in general!

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