Common Names: Pea, Garden Pea, Greenpea, Green Pea, Dry Pea. Snow Pea, Sugar Snap Pea
Pea probably originated in southwestern Asia, but it spread nearly throughout the world. Green Peas are the number-one processed vegetable in the UK and the USA. The plant is an annual, dwarf or climbing, growing as high as 2m. The Pea is a small, round, smooth or wrinkled seed, growing in pods.
There are many varieties of Pea, some grown to be eaten fresh, others to be used dried. (Dried Peas were the staple food of Europe during the Middle Ages.) Pod Peas are those that are eaten pod and all, namely the Snow Pea and Sugar Snap Pea. Dried Peas are high in carbohydrate and fibre and low in fat, an economical source of protein.
Green Peas are marketed fresh, canned, or frozen. They can be cooked alone as a vegetable or added to other dishes. They can also be sprouted and added to salads, soups, etc. The mature seed may be dried and used whole or split (in which form it is often served as dahl), or ground into a powder and then used to enrich the protein content of flour. Roasted Peas can be a coffee substitute. The leaves and young shoots are cooked as a potherb. Peas, either whole or ground and extruded, are increasingly popular snack items.
Peas are reported to be contraceptive, fungistatic and spermacidal, and are said to have several other medicinal properties. The dried and powdered seed, for example, has been used as a poultice for skin complaints, including acne.
An allergen belonging to the Isoflavone Reductase family has been detected in Pea, which has a 56-80% sequence identity with IFR homologues proteins from various plants, e.g. birch apple, pear, orange, mango, lychee, carrots, bananas, and chickpeas. (Karamloo 1999 ref.4273 3)
A protein belonging to the vicilin (7S globulin) group of seed proteins has been detected. Its allergenicity was not determined. Jug r 2, a vicilin from English Walnut kernel has been shown to be a major allergen. (Teuber 1999 ref.4562 3) (Vieths 1998 ref.4564 3)
Globulin fraction accounts for 75-80% of the total seed protein, and albumin the remainder. The amount depends on the cultivar. Globulin extracts did not produce positive skin tests, whereas albumin fractions retained their allergenicity when heated at 60 degrees celcius for 30 minutes or boiled at 100 degrees celcius for 5 minutes. However autoclaving at 120 degrees celcius for 15 minutes significantly reduced its allergenic activity. (Malley 1975 ref.271 34) (Malley 1976 ref.273 14)
IGE AND IMMUNE:
Allergic reactions, including from inhalation of steam vapour during cooking. Atopic dermatitis. Asthma. Rhinitis. Angioedema. Dermatitis. Oral pruritis. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea. Dyspnoea. Abdominal cramping.
Five patients with peanut sensitivity also with a history of adverse reactions to green pea was described in a study. (Hefle 1994 ref.111 21) Pea allergy in an individual. (Huertas 1995 ref.7385 3)
In a study of 99 children with atopic dermatitis, hen egg was the most common food allergen in children under 1 year of age. After that age, apple, carrot, pea, and soybean elicited positive reactions as often as egg (Hannuksela 1987 ref.1711 7)
In a study, more than 15 food allergens were found to result in food-induced anaphylaxis: egg (11.6%), fish (10.4%), crustaceans (10.4%), milk (6.5%), fruit-latex group (6.5%), peanut and other legumes (soy, peas, lentils, guar gum, etc.), celery, garlic, etc. The food allergen still remained unknown in 25% of cases (Moneret-Vautrin 1995 ref.2153 3)
This study reports on a 33 year old woman who developed tongue swelling and burning and mouth itching occurring minutes after eating baked beans. Similar symptoms occurred a day after ingesting pea soup, and on another occasion within 15 minutes after eating a bean burrito, and again 20 minutes after eating chilli containing kidney and pinto beans. In this instance she also developed chest tightness, wheezing, generalised erythema, urticaria, abdominal pain, feeling of impending doom and light headedness. Skin specific IgE was positive to red kidney and white beans but negative to pea, string and lima beans. Serum specific IgE was positive to red kidney, white, pinto , chick, garden and black-eyed peas. (Zacharisen 1998 ref.7310 2)
Infantile food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome (FPIES) is a severe, cell-mediated gastrointestinal food hypersensitivity typically provoked by cow's milk or soy. This study reports on other foods causing this syndrome: 14 infants with FPIES caused by grains (rice, oat, and barley), vegetables (sweet potato, squash, string beans, peas), or poultry (chicken and turkey) were identified. Symptoms of typical FPIES are delayed (median: 2 hours) and include the onset of vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy/dehydration. Eleven infants (78%) reacted to >1 food protein, including 7 (50%) that reacted to >1 grain. Nine (64%) of all patients with solid food-FPIES also had cow's milk and/or soy-FPIES. Initial presentation was severe in 79% of the patients, prompting sepsis evaluations (57%) and hospitalization (64%) for dehydration or shock. None of the patients developed FPIES to maternally ingested foods while breastfeeding unless the causal food was fed directly to the infant. (Nowak-Wegrzyn 2003 ref.7791 5)
Asthma when exposed to vapours from cooking some kinds of legumes (peas, chick-peas, beans, lentils). (Garcia 1995 ref.735 42)
Occupational asthma caused by pea flour. (Bhagat 1995 ref.7312 2)
Rice- and pea-induced food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome, a symptom complex of severe vomiting and diarrhea occurring several hours after the ingestion of particular food proteins in infants. (Sicherer 1998 ref.2389 6)
Six patients (four males, two females aged 3-12 months) were diagnosed with food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome (FPIES) triggered by foods other than cow's milk and soy: chicken in four, turkey in two, peas in one, and lentils in one (five patients reacted to more than one food type). All reactions developed within 2 h of ingestion of the allergenic food. (Levy 2003 ref.8320 1)
Information supplied from an abridged section of:
Allergy Advisor - Zing Solutions
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