Moderators: chrissy1988, sun123

I'm a college student and my main lunch staple is the to-go prepackaged sandwiches, salads, wraps, etc. from our campus dining.  I've noticed that lately some of the products have been making me sick to my stomach.  I started watching, and these are the things that have iceberg lettuce (shredded, not the big leafy romaine-like lettuce).  Can you be allergic to lettuce?  Thoughts?

Edited Dec 12 2013 23:54 by coach_k
Reason: locked to prevent unnecessary zombie bumps. OP last on site in 2009
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it would be rare to be allergic to iceberg lettuce, but probably not impossible.  It could be possible for e.coli to have made it's way into the sandwiches, however, it doesn't have to come from the lettuce but from employees hands (sorry).  Also, make sure you check the dates on the sandwiches.
I don't know if you can be allergic to lettuce or not, but I am kind of curious as to what other think.  I also get sick from things like lettuce as well as bananas, eggs, and sometimes yogurt makes me sick if I eat it too often.  I find it very frustrating since I love those foods, but find it difficult to eat them sometimes.  I can have the items on rare occasions, but I certainly can't make them a staple in my diet.

I have never posted here before but I will today..

you can be allergic to lettuce.  I have a friend who is VERY allergic to it, along with eggs and milk products..

It's possible that you have IBS; green leafies usually affect people who have this problem. I'd recommend talking to an allergist or a gastroenterologist.
There's also a preservative that restaurants use on prepacked salads, sandwiches, and salad bars that they spray on the lettuce to make it stay nice and green and fresh looking, particularly iceberg.  I know someone who can't eat salads from salad bars because she gets the same issues you are probably experiencing.  You might experiment a bit and see if you get the same ickiness from iceberg someplace else.  Chances are you are probably not allergic to it, but you may have an intolerance to it (as someone with a lot of food allergies, I know that the ones I'm allergic to make me itch A LOT, while intolerance usually produces tummy problems).  If your mouth or face itches when you eat it or you feel your throat swelling, that's an allergy.  It could also be IBS or some other gastro issue.
What mlbtracy said is right mom is this way. If she eats lettuce off a salad bar or on a sandwich in a restaurant it makes her ill. There is a preservative spray they use to keep things looking fresher longer. I'd try the lettuce at a grocery store and see if it affects you in the same way.

I'm not sure allergy is the right term but some things just don't agree with some tummies! I used to live with a girl who, erm, made a very bad smell all of the next day if she ate lettuce! And it could be specific to iceberg lettuce- some kinds of onions give me a really bad tummy ache and others are fine.

If it gives you problems, cut it out but if you really enjoy it try going for an organic lettuce or one yuo have washed and prepared yourself as you neevr know how your food has been treated when prepared by someone else.

on the news, last yr, were statements about the FDA approving sliced lunch meat to be sprayed with a virus which eats the bacteria on cold lunch meat.  Meat that is cooked doesn't have this problem, just the cold.  I think it was something like "listerine".

I have a relative who can't eat subway as they upset her stomach. 

I have also heard that the precleaned baby carrots are sprayed with something to keep them from getting slimey in packages.  I notice my bagged and sealed lettuce, etc, usually warns to rinse before eating.
Alright.  Thanks for all your input!  I wasn't sure if it was an allergy or not, I'm allergic to cashews and my toungue swells up and I get a rash, so it sounds like it's just intolerance.  I'll look out for some of these over-preserved things... I didn't know about all this stuff that can be added to food, it's kinda creepy. 

I think I'm also allergic to lettuce. About 10 yrs ago. About once or twice a month i d get sick. Were my burps smell and taste like rotten eggs, and a rotten egg gas bubbles out of my stomach. I puke and get diarria and my stomach hurts bad. It's like everything I eat during this time just rotts in my belly. I'm sick a few days and then it goes away. (if I fast till it does) is this kinda what ur going throu. Dr's can't figure out what's wrong w me, and I'm tired of waiting for them to figure it out. The last cpl of months I've noticed (i think) it happens after I eat lettuce!

Iceberg lettuce gives me major tummy problems! It's not really an allergy as much as a food intolerance according to my doctor. But yes, it is very possible.

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Yes, you can be allergic to lettuce! I know how ridiculous it sounds, but I'm allergic to lettuce. If you have a number of other allergies, you could also have latex allergy. DO NOT believe a physician that tells you a latex allergy- or any allergy- is not a big deal. I've learned that the hard way and can no longer leave my house without a gas mask on. Also, allergy tests are not 100% accurate, nor are allergy blood tests, which very few physicians will admit. Educate yourself and trust your body- if it doesn't like lettuce, then avoid it!

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@thecarlsons2008, what you describe sounds like giardia...I was in the Peace Corps and many people had it there and it's exactly what you describe.

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