Substance Info: (and synonyms)
Chickpea / Chick pea / Bengal gram / Garbanzo bean

Background Info:

Common Names: Chick pea, Chick-pea, Chickpea, Garbanzo Bean, Hummus, Bengal Gram

Chickpea is a leguminous plant which produces hazelnut-shaped, nutty flavoured seeds. Chickpea is an important source of proteins, carbohydrates, B-group vitamins, and certain minerals, particularly to the populations of developing nations. India contributes over 75% of the chickpea production in the world where it is mostly consumed as dhal, whole seeds, and several types of traditional, fermented, deep fried, sweetened, and puffed products. They are a staple food in the Middle East. Chickpeas are also used extensively in the Mediterranean, especially in Spain, and India, and their use has spread along with cuisines from these places. In contrast to many western countries, chickpea preparations are consumed in large quantities in India.

The original habitat is obscure, but may have been southwestern Asia. Chick pea is grown in tropical, sub-tropical and temperate regions. The Chick pea is valued for its nutritive seeds with their high protein content, 25.3-28.9 % after dehulling. Slightly larger than the average pea, these round, irregular-shaped, buff-colored legumes have a firm texture and mild, nutlike flavor.

The Chick pea is unknown in the wild, though there are some related wild species. Chickpeas are roasted whole, ground for cooking or milled into grain flour. They are available canned, dried and sometimes fresh. Chick pea seeds are eaten fresh as green vegetables; parched, fried, roasted, and boiled; and as a snack food, sweet and condiment. Seeds are ground and the flour can be used as soup, as dhal (which has a number of uses as an ingredient), and to make hummus and bread. Requires soaking before cooking. Sprouted seeds are eaten as a vegetable or added to salads. Young shoots and green pods are eaten like spinach (but may be toxic: see under Other reactions). A small proportion of Chick pea is used to produce fermented food. The roasted seed or root can be used as a coffee substitute. Acid exudate from the seedpod can be eaten as a type of vinegar.

The acid exudate is astringent. It has been used in the treatment of a number of ailments including diarrhea.

Parts of the plant can serve as animal feed, and can be made into adhesive, dye, and starch.

Hummus (see) is produced from this bean.


Adverse Reactions:


[ 1 / 31 ]

An infant with chickpea and egg allergy. (Dibek 2011 ref.26212 0)

Dibek ME, Ozmen S, Bostanci I. An infant with chickpea and egg allergy. Allergol Immunopathol (Madr ) 2011 May;39(3):186-187

[ 2 / 31 ]

A 17-year-old male reported suffering from pruritus, diffuse warmth, and facial erythema followed by generalized urticaria, edema of the eyelids, lips and tongue, wheezing, dyspnea, and short-term unconsciousness 30 to 60 minutes after beginning any kind of physical exertion immediately after ingestion of lentil soup. He had experienced 4 separate episodes, the latest episode occurring after a football game. He experienced no reaction to lentil soup (approx 250 mL) if consumed without subsequent physical exertion. He also described 2 episodes of pruritus and tingling of the lips and tongue followed by generalized urticaria, edema of the eyelids, lips and tongue, mild stridor, wheezing, and shortness of breath that began immediately after ingestion of chickpea. He reported no reactions following consumption of other legumes. Total serum IgE was 117u.g/L. Wheal and flare reactions in SPTs and prick-prick tests with lentil were 9/11 mm and 8/11 mm, and with chickpea they were 7/9 mm and 7/10 mm, respectively. SPTs and prick-prick tests with bean, soy, peanut, and pea were negative. Specific IgE antibodies to lentil and chickpea were 13.9 kU/L and 11.3 kU/L, respectively. Specific IgE antibodies to bean, soy, peanut, and pea were all below 0.35 kU/L. An open oral challenge test with lentil soup in progressively increasing doses (1,5, 10, 30, 75, and 125 mL) every 15 minutes was negative. Oral challenge with chickpea was not performed due to patient refusal. Specific food and exercise challenge 1 hour after lentil soup intake resulted in pruritus of the hands, forearms, shoulders, and back, urticarial lesions on the face and shoulders, mild angioedema of the lips, and mild hoarseness and cough. The authors considert this is the first case of food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis due to lentil. (Orhan 2008 ref.22799 7)

Orhan F, Karakas T. Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis to lentil and anaphylaxis to chickpea in a 17-year-old boy. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2008;18(6):465-8.

[ 3 / 31 ]

The objective of this study was to describe the clinical features of a Spanish pediatric population allergic to legumes (lentils, chickpeas, peas, white beans, and peanuts), to evaluate the clinical allergy to several legumes, and to determine which legume extract is most appropriate to use in the diagnosis of legume allergy by skin tests. Fifty-four children with allergic reactions after exposure to legumes were studied. The onset of allergic reactions was at approximately the age of 2 years (median, 22 months). Skin prick test results were positive for at least 3 legumes in 38 children (70%). Positive results were more frequent to boiled extracts than to raw extracts in children with a positive oral challenge. Allergy to lentil was the most frequently diagnosed legume allergy (43 children [80%]), followed by allergy to chickpea (32 children [59%]), pea (27 children [50%]), peanut (18 children [33%]) and white bean (6 children [11%]). Oral challenges with more than 1 legume (median, 3 legumes) were positive in 37 children (69%). The most frequent induced symptoms on challenge were respiratory (rhinitis and/or asthma) and cutaneous.
Clinical Manifestations During Oral Challenges
Symptom Total Lentil Chickpea Pea White bean Peanut
(n=105) (n=37) (n=29) (n = 24) (n=6) (n=9)
Cutaneous 45 (43) 14 (38) 15 (52) 13 (54) 2(33) 3 (33)
GITl 20 (19) 4 (11) 3 (10) 3 (13) 2(33) 2 (22)
Resp 60 (57) 12 (32) 17 (59) 11 (46) 0 4 (44)
OAS 28 (27) 16 (43) 5 (17) 3 (13) 2 (33) 2 (22)
Severe react 11(10) 3 (8) 4(14) 2 (8) 0 2 (22)
(Martínez 2008 ref.22238 3)

Martínez San Ireneo M, Ibáñez MD, Sánchez JJ, Carnés J, Fernández-Caldas E. Clinical features of legume allergy in children from a Mediterranean area. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2008 Aug;101(2):179-84

[ 4 / 31 ]

Legume allergy, mainly to lentils and chickpeas, is the fifth most common cause of food allergy in Spanish children. Serological cross-reactivity among legumes is frequent, but its clinical relevance is controversial. The aim of this study was to investigate the cross-reactivity among lentils, chickpeas, peas, white beans and peanuts and its clinical relevance in pediatric patients. Fifty-four children with clinical allergy to legumes were included. Inhibition experiments demonstrated more than 80% inhibition with lentil, chickpea and pea extracts. Immunoblots performed with raw legume extracts (lentil, chickpea and pea) and individual sera revealed that more than 50% of the sera identified an allergen with approximately 50 kDa in all three legume extracts. In all three boiled extracts an intense band at approximately 50 kDa was visualized using a serum pool. The oral legume challenges demonstrated that 37 children (69%) were allergic to 2 or more legumes (median 3 legumes). The most frequent associations were allergy to lentils and chickpeas (57%), allergy to lentils and peas (54%) and allergy to lentils, chickpeas and peas (43%). Food challenges confirmed that clinical allergy to all three legumes is frequent in this cohort of Spanish children. (Martínez 2008 ref.21964 7)

Martínez San Ireneo M, Ibáñez MD, Fernández-Caldas E, Carnés J. In vitro and in vivo cross-reactivity studies of legume allergy in a Mediterranean population. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2008 Jul 2;147(3):222-230

[ 5 / 31 ]

Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis (FDEIA) is recognized as a distinct category of exercise-induced anaphylaxis (EIA) but is very likely underdiagnosed. This report describes a 41-year-old Indian woman who experienced two separate episodes of anaphylaxis while dancing after she had eaten chickpea-containing foods. The first occurred during a party in the summer of 2005; the patient ate a dish containing chickpea flour at approximately 7 pm, and within half an hour, she developed generalized urticaria with facial swelling, mostly in the periorbital region, while dancing. She did not experience any dysphagia, wheezing, or breathing difficulties. At midnight that same evening, the patient felt lightheaded and, after standing up, lost consciousness for less than 30 seconds. After regaining consciousness, she had some nausea and vomiting and felt weak. Skin prick test was positive only to chickpeas. Serum specific IgE for chickpea was 0.47 kU/L. (Wong 2007 ref.25642 3)

Wong CG, Mace SR. Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis: a case related to chickpea ingestion and review. Allergy Asthma Clin Immunol 2007 Dec 15;3(4):134-137

[ 6 / 31 ]

In a study to identify new allergens in chickpea, a pool or individual sera from 16 allergic patients, with clinical history of chickpea allergy and positive SPT to chickpea and lentil were used in IgE immunodetection of a crude chickpea protein extract. (Sánchez-Monge 2006 ref.22981 7)

Sánchez-Monge R, Valdés I, López-Torrejón G, Pascual C, Martin-Esteban M, Salcedo G. A new lectin family involved in paediatric chickpea (Cicer arietinum) allergy. EAACI Congress, Vienna-Austria. 2006 Jun; Oral Abstract 588.

[ 7 / 31 ]

In majority of allergic subjects to peanut, the presence of IgE directed against lupine usually constitutes only a laboratory sign of sensitisation. A case of 11 year old boy with cutaneous and gastrointestinal complains, first after peanut ingestion and then facial angioedema associated with lupine ingestion. SPTs with commercial extracts were positive to peanut, pistachio, walnut and chick pea and negative to common aeroallergens. Prick-prick test were positive to peel and pulp of fresh lupine. Serum specific IgE to peanut >100 KU/L, peel lupine 49.9 KU/L, pulp lupine 43 KU/L, pistachio 16.2 KU/L, walnut 0.67 KU/L, chick pea 16.4 KU/L. Immunoblotting studies revealed several molecular weight bands, including one at 66 kDa in peanut, lupine (peel and pulp), pistachio and chick pea extracts. Inhibition immunoblotting studies demonstrated cross-reactivity between peanut and lupine. (Costa 2006 ref.22979 5)

Costa A, Marco F, Santos M, Ferreira M, Pregal A, Pedro E, Pereira-Barbosa M. Clinical importance of cross-reactivity between peanut and lupin. EAACI Congress, Vienna-Austria. 2006 Jun; Oral Abstract 1555.

[ 8 / 31 ]

A report on a 16-year-old boy who has developed erythema and angioedema, conjunctivitis, and dyspnea due to inhalation of poppy seed. Although he had urticaria, angioedema, and dyspnea after ingestion of chickpea and lentil when he was 7 years old, he could eat these foods without any reaction now. Skin-prick tests were positive for poppy seed, hazelnut, and chickpea. The concentration of specific IgE for poppy seed, hazelnut, and peanut were 3.36 kU/L, 1.5 kU/L, and 6.17 kU/L, respectively. This is the first report on inhalative allergy to the poppy seed. (Keskin 2006 ref.15721 3)

Keskin O, Sekerel BE. Poppy seed allergy: a case report and review of the literature. Allergy Asthma Proc 2006 Jul;27(4):396-398

[ 9 / 31 ]

An 8-year-old asthmatic child, who was allergic to peanut, suffered an asthma attack while playing with his brother, who had been eating lupine seed as snack. The skin tests were positive to Lupinus albus extract, peanut, garbanzo bean, navy bean, pea, green bean, lentil, soy, Olea europea pollen, grass pollen and Plantago lanceolata pollen. The prick-by-prick tests both from dried seeds and those preserved in salt and water were strongly positive. Serum specific IgE antibodies were positive to Lupine albus (1.43 kU/l), peanut (4.32 kU/l), soy (2.15 kU/l), lentil (3.12 kU/l) and garbanzo (0.7 kU/l). The patient had asthma in 5 min of manipulation of the lupine seeds. Reactivity with other legumes was also demonstrated, but only peanut allergy was relevant because boiled legumes were tolerated. (Moreno-Ancillo 2005 ref.12564 7)

Moreno-Ancillo A, Gil-Adrados AC, Dominguez-Noche C, Cosmes PM. Lupine inhalation induced asthma in a child. Pediatr Allergy Immunol 2005 Sep;16(6):6-544

[ 10 / 31 ]

Cross-reactivity between allergens from latex and chickpea is described in a 13-year-old boy wtih spina bifida boy with a allergy to chickpea, developing after the appearance of latex allergy symptoms. Latex allergy was suspected at the age of 6 when he suffered from angioedema of the lips when blowing rubber balloons. Allergologic evaluation at that time was negative. Recently he developed dysphonia and pruritus of the perioral region, lips and tongue, appearing immediately after eating chickpeas or chickpea soup. Reintroduction of chickpea soup (approximately 50 ml) immediately induced pruritus of the lips and tongue. Specific IgE to latex and chickpea was demonstrated by skin prick tests (14mm) and serum specific IgE (2.62 kU/l). Pruritus of the lips and tongue and a mild perioral erythema appeared 10 minutes after administration of the second dose of 10 ml of undiluted chickpea solution. The challenge was stopped and symptoms disappeared spontaneously after 30 minutes. (Branco 2004 ref.11087 5)

Branco Ferreira M, Pedro E, Meneses Santos J, Pereira dos Santos MC, Palma Carlos ML, Bartolome B, Palma Carlos AG. Latex and chickpea (Cicer arietinum) allergy: first description of a new association. Allergie et immunologie 2004;36(10):366-71.

[ 11 / 31 ]

12 children with an IgE-mediated food allergy who developed asthma on inhalational exposure to food were identified. The implicated foods were fish, chickpea, milk, egg or buckwheat. Nine out of the 12 children consented to undergo a bronchial food challenge. Five challenges were positive with objective clinical features of asthma. Additionally, two children developed late-phase symptoms with a decrease in lung function. Positive reactions were seen with fish, chickpea and buckwheat.

Age Food Oral Air SPT sIgE lU/ml (class)
5 Fish (frying) U C.W ND 8.29 (3)
7 Fish (steaming) W U.A.W ND 5.90 (3)
8 Fish (baking or steaming) U,W U,W 10 ND
11 Fish (steaming or frying) U,W C ND 7.29 (3)
13 Fish (steaming or frying) U,A C,W ND >100(6)
13 Fish (steaming or frying) U,S W,T 20 >100(6)
2 Chickpea (baking) U,W R.C ND 6.07 (3)
6 Chickpea (baking) U.R U,W 4 0.00 (0)
4 Milk (boiling) V.L C.W 10 18.10 (4)
5 Milk (boiling) A,U C ND 85.70 (5)
4 Egg (boiling) V.W W 6 53.40 (5)
7 Buckwheat (baking) U.W W 16 ND
U, urticaria: W, wheeze; V, vomiting: A, angiedema; S, stridor; R, rhinoconjunctivitis; L, lethargy; C, cough; T, chest tightness: ND: not done.

Age Food Challenge Early phase Late phase
5 Fish Moved away ND ND
7 Fish DBPCBFC Wheeze, cough, Cough, FEV1 fall
FEV1 fall
8 Fish Refused challenge ND ND
11 Fish DBPCBFC No symptoms or signs No symptoms or signs
13 Fish DBPCBFC Rhinitis, tight chest, No symptoms or signs
FEV1 fall
13 Fish Open Wheeze, cough No symptoms or signs
(steamed fish) FEV1 fall
2 Chickpea Refused challenge ND ND
6 Chickpea SBPCBFC Rhinitis, urticaria, Wheeze
wheeze, FEV1 fall FEV1 fall
4 Milk DBPCBFC No symptoms or signs No symptoms or signs
5 Milk DBPCBFC No symptoms or signs No symptoms or signs
4 Egg DBPCBFC No symptoms or signs No symptoms or signs
7 Buckwheat Open Urticaria, angiedema, No symptoms or signs
(Roberts 2002 ref.6660 1)

Roberts G, Golder N, Lack G. Bronchial challenges with aerosolized food in asthmatic, food-allergic children. Allergy 2002;57(8):713-7

[ 12 / 31 ]

Serum samples were obtained from 22 patients with histories of adverse reactions to lentils, 14 had also immediate allergic reactions with chickpeas and 10 with peanuts; no one referred symptoms with soy or soy- derived products. All of them had positive specific IgE antibodies to the four legumes. (Belver 2002 ref.13778 5)

Belver MT, Pascual CY, Pereira MJ, Valls A, Garcia Ara MC, Boyano T, Martin Esteban M. Cross-reactivity between lentils and chickpeas towards peanuts and soy, in a Spanish children population. [Poster: XXI Congress of EAACI] Allergy 2002;57 Suppl 73:79-84.

[ 13 / 31 ]

In the Mediterranean area and Middle East, the most commonly consumed legumes are lentils and chickpea. In the United States, United Kingdom and south-east Asia, the major legumes involved in food allergy are considered to be peanut and soy bean, respectively. The clinical manifestations of the allergy to legumes are similar for all legumes and range from oral allergy syndrome, urticaria, angioedema, rhinitis and asthmatic crises to anaphylaxis and even death. Legumes have a high degree of immunological cross-reactivity. The allergenicity of legumes is mainly is mainly related to allergens from the storage proteins of seeds. Vicilins from this group of proteins could be an important common allergen in clinical allergy to legumes. Other panallergens of increasing importance are lipid transfer proteins. (Pereira 2002 ref.7746 2)

Pereira MJ, Belver MT, Pascual CY, Martin Esteban M. The allergenic significance of legumes. [Spanish] Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 2002;30(6):346-53

[ 14 / 31 ]

This study from India reports that chickpea is an important source of allergen that can cause IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reactions ranging from rhinitis to anaphylaxis. Of 1400 patients visiting allergy clinics randomly selected for the study, 142 patients were history-positive to some food and 59 of these implicated chickpeas (4.21% of total patients). Of these, 41 were skin test-positive and 31 were DBPCFC-positive for chickpea. The ELISA results did not correlate well with the DBPCFC results; however, the skin test results correlated with DBPCFC in 75% of patients. (Patil 2001 ref.4484 0)

Patil SP, Niphadkar PV, Bapat MM. Chickpea: a major food allergen in the Indian subcontinent and its clinical and immunochemical correlation. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2001;87(2):140-5

[ 15 / 31 ]

Sera of 29 children with a history of allergic reactions after ingestion of chick pea, and positive skin tests to this legume, were used to study the allergenic composition of raw and boiled chick pea extracts. The patient population was divided into 2 groups: group 1 consisted of 19 patients with clinical sensitivity confirmed by either positive oral challenges or a convincing recent history of anaphylaxis after eating chick peas, and group 2 consisted of 10 patients with clinical sensitivity in the past, but tolerant at the time of blood extraction. There were no significant differences between specific IgE levels to the raw and boiled extracts. The mean levels in group 1 were significantly higher than in group 2 and controls, i.e., patients with a current clinical allergy to chick pea were shown to have statistically higher specific IgE levels than tolerant patients and controls (Mean total IgE, kU/L 473 (25-1,878) vs 685 (104-1,868)).

Group 1 (n=19) Group 2 (n=10)
Skin 9/14(64) 7/10(70)
Respiratory 8/14(57) 3/10(30)
Gastrointestinal 2/14(14.3) 2/10(20)

Clinical allergy to other legumes
Group 1 (n=19) Group 2 (n=10)
Lentils 16/19(84) 5/10(50)
Peas 13/19(68) 1/10(10)
Peanuts 2/19(10) 1/10(10)

Positive skin prick tests to other legumes
Group 1 (n=19) Group 2 (n=10)
Lentils 19/19(100) 8/10(80)
Peas 18/19(95) 4/10(40)
Peanuts 13/19(68) 4/10 (40)
(numbers and percentage (in parentheses) where not indicated otherwise.)
Symptoms: as confirmed by oral challenges; 5 patients of group 1 were not challenged because they had a convincing recent history of anaphylaxis to chick pea (2 systemic anaphylaxis; 2, asthma after exposure to steam from cooked chick peas; 1 several episodes of generalized urticaria). All patients of group 2 were challenged; results at the time of the study were negative. Symptoms: skin: urticaria and/or angioedema; respiratory: cough, wheezing, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and/ or laryngeal edema; gastrointestinal: vomiting.
(Martinez 2000 ref.3715 2)

Martinez San Ireneo M, Ibanez Sandin MD, et al. Specific IgE levels to Cicer arietinum (Chick pea) in tolerant and nontolerant children: evaluation of boiled and raw extracts. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2000;121(2):137-43

[ 16 / 31 ]

This study investigated the cross-reactivity to non-Rosaceae LTPs. IgE antibodies to Rosaceae LTPs reacted to a broad range of vegetable foods were evaluated in 498 subjects (age > 12 years) with Rosaccae allergy as judged by skin prick test with fresh fruits and (in most cases) clinical history. The majority had OAS (>97%), and only a minority (approximately 10%) showed urticaria/angioedema, gastrointestinal symptoms, food-induced rhinitis, asthma, or anaphylaxis. Sera from 37 patients were available for follow-up studies. Peach was identified most frequently as an offending Rosaceae food (in 30/37 patients), followed by apple (16/37), apricot (11/37), cherry (9/37), plum (8/37), almond (7/37) and pear (6/37). Four patients did not have any clinical symptoms related to Rosaccae fruits, despite a positive SPT with commercial plum extract and peach peel extract. All 37 patients were interviewed for allergies to other foods. Walnut and hazelnut were most frequently reported as offending foods (19/37 and 15/37, respectively), closely followed by peanut (9/37). For the other 33 different foods, the number of patients reporting symptoms ranged from 1 to 5. These foods were found among all major groups of vegetable foods, including cereals (corn, wheat), legumes (soybean, string bean, white bean, chick pea, lentils, lupine), Solanaceae (potato, tomato, eggplant) Brassicaceae (cabbage, mustard), Umbelliferae (celery, fennel), Rutaceae (lemon, orange), and several other plant families. This article contains a table of the 37 patients and the effecting foods and symptoms of each patient.
(Asero 2000 ref.3711 7)

Asero R, Mistrello G, Roncarolo D, de Vries SC, Gautier MF, Ciurana CL, Verbeek E, Mohammadi T, Knul-Brettlova V, Akkerdaas JH, Bulder I, Aalberse RC, van Ree R. Lipid transfer protein: a pan-allergen in plant-derived foods that is highly resistant to pepsin digestion. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2000;122(1):20-32

[ 17 / 31 ]

This study demonstrated a 20% reduction in lung function to inhalation of aerosolised fish, buckwheat and chick pea. (Golder 2000 ref.3544 3)

Golder N, Roberts G, Lack G Aerosolised food can provoke asthma in childhood AAAAI 56th Annual Meeting 2000;March 3–8

[ 18 / 31 ]

Elicitation of asthma by the steam of cooking vegetables such as chick peas and lentils (Martin 1992 ref.543 95) (Pascual 1999 ref.7341 8), and fish, is also possible. (Crespo 1995 ref.15426 0)

Pascual CY, Fernandez-Crespo J, Sanchez-Pastor S, Padial MA, Diaz-Pena JM, Martin-Munoz F, Martin-Esteban M. Allergy to lentils in Mediterranean pediatric patients. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1999;103(1 Pt 1):154-8

[ 19 / 31 ]

In a Spanish study, in 20 of 22 subjects who experienced allergy symptoms following exposure to lentils, the most frequent symptoms were oropharyngeal symptoms (40%) and acute urticaria (30%); 3 patients also reported symptoms when they were exposed to steam from cooked lentils. Onset of sensitisation occurred less than 4 years of age and 9 patients had allergic reactions to other legumes: chick peas (6 patients), peas (2 patients), and green beans (1 patient). The heating process caused a significant decrease in specific-IgE-binding.
Age-onset Symptoms Lentil-slgE Other food allergies
2.5* U 6.64 Chick peas
3 U 4.75 Chick peas
4 OAS 18.2
5 NS 44.9 Fish
12 U,C,W 13.1
3* OAS/R 17.5 Green beans
3 U,V,LE 5.61 Chick peas, peaches, fish
3 V,AP,D 8.7 Fish, milk
2 AD 54.6
2 U/A 7.16 Peas
3 U/A 16.7 Peas, fish
3* OAS/R 4.72 Chick peas
3 OAS 4.86
12 U/A,C,W 20.3 Peaches
6 NS 8.9 Chestnut
1.5 U,C,W >100
1.5 OAS 25.9 Fish
1.5 OAS 13.4 Chick peas
1.7 U/A 5.43
2.1 OAS 43.6
1.8 OAS 5.87 Chick peas
1.2 U/A 44.4
U, generalized urticaria; OAS, oral allergy syndrome; NS, no symptoms; C. cough; W, wheezing; R, rhinitis; V, vomiting; LE, laryngeal edema; AP, abdominal pain; D, diarrhea; AD, atopic dermatitis; A, facial angioedema.
*Also, symptoms after exposure to steam from cooked lentils.
(Pascual 1999 ref.7341 3)

Pascual CY, Fernandez-Crespo J, Sanchez-Pastor S, Padial MA, Diaz-Pena JM, Martin-Munoz F, Martin-Esteban M. Allergy to lentils in Mediterranean pediatric patients. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1999;103(1 Pt 1):154-8

[ 20 / 31 ]

Immediate allergy following ingestion, inhalation, and external application of fenugreek seed powder. In the first case, inhalation of the fenugreek seed powder resulted in rhinorrhea, persistant coughing, wheezing, and fainting in a 36-year old housewife, followed by shock. Past history showed allergy to chickpea. The second case, a 45-year old woman with chronic asthma who developed within minutes, nasal congestion and hoarseness after application of fenugreek paste to her scalp as a treatment for dandruff. This progressed to numbness of head, facial angioedema, and wheezing. She had a previous history of wheezing after eating feugreek seeds. Skin scratch tests for the patients revealed strong sensitivity to fenugreek and chickpeas. During DBPCFC, both patients showed > 20% drop in peak flow rate after consumption of fenugreek and chickpea. In patient 1, 0.5g fenugreek powder resulted in a 40% fall within 45min after DBPCFC while itching and urticaria occurred within 2.5 hours after ingestion of 2g chickpea powder. In patient 2, a 32% drop in FEV1 occurred 3hrs after ingestion of fenugreek. 15-16g of chickpea resulted in a 20% drop within 5 hours of ingestion.
(Patil 1997 ref.607 32)

Patil SP, Niphadkar PV, Bapat MM. Allergy to fenugreek (Trigonella foenum graecum). Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 1997;78(3):297-300

[ 21 / 31 ]

Anaphylaxis in an 8 year old Indian girl who presented with wheezing and urticaria 1 hour after ingesting chickpea. She had a history of wheezing following inhalation of chickpea flour or its vapours while being cooked. External application of chickpea paste had resulted in urticaria. Skin scratch test with chickpea was strongly positive with several pseudopodia. Ingestion of 1 g of the test sample in a DBPCFC resulted in a reduction in the patient's pulse rate, BP, PFR, and FEV1, accompanied by wheezing. 21 protein bands of 10-70 kDa were isolated. IgE binding was seen with multiple bands on immunoblots. (Niphadka 1997 ref.4121 3)

Niphadkar PV, Patil SP, Bapat MM. Chickpea-induced anaphylaxis. Allergy 1997;52(1):115-6

[ 22 / 31 ]

An 8-year-old girl suffered with contact urticaria from raw chickpeas and an anaphylactic reaction after ingestion of cooked chickpeas. She experienced four episodes of anaphylaxis related to lentils between the ages of 3 and 7 years. The first three involved ingestion of cooked lentils, and each time smaller amounts induced symptoms. The fourth episode occurred with inhalation exposure to cooking lentil soup. Prick tests showed strongly positive reactions to lentil and chickpea and weaker positive reactions to peanut, pea, soybean, and white bean. CAP-RIA was class 6 to lentil; class 5 to peanut, pea, and soybean; class 4 to white bean, and class 0 to green bean. Severe type I hypersensitivity to lentils occurred in this patient and was associated with clinically relevant hypersensitivity to chickpeas. (Kalogeromitros 1996 ref.824 42)

Kalogeromitros D, Armenaka M, Galatas I, Capellou O, Katsarou A. Anaphylaxis induced by lentils. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 1996;77(6):480-2

[ 23 / 31 ]

A 54-year-old female, who developed episodes of asthma, sometimes requiring hospital care, when exposed to vapours from cooking certain legumes (peas, chick peas, beans, lentils). The same symptoms appeared after ingestion of these legumes, as well as mouth itch and lip angioedema immediately after eating peanuts. The SPT for the 5 legumes: peas, peanuts, beans, lentils and chickpeas, including the heated extracts, were clearly positive. CAP values were: pea (> 100 KU/L), peanut (55.3 KU/L), bean (9 KU/L), lentil (> 100 KU/L) and chickpea(> 100 KU/L). Inhibition tests showed cross-reactivity among legumes. (Garcia 1995 ref.735 8)

Garcia Ortiz JC, Lopez Asunsolo A, Cosmes P, Duran AM. Bronchial asthma induced by hypersensitivity to legumes. Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 1995;23(1):38-40

[ 24 / 31 ]

This editorial points out that in a recent nationally-publicized case from Michigan, a legume-sensitive girl experienced fatal anaphylaxis after inhaling steam from a kettle in which garbanzo beans were being cooked, is referred to. (Yunginger 1994 ref.3530 5)

Yunginger JW. Food ingredient labeling: how many ways can wheat be spelt? Allergy Proc 1994;15(4):219-20

[ 25 / 31 ]

This study reports the case of a 20-year-old man who experienced asthmatic attacks when exposed to the steam from cooking either chick pea or lentil. Type I hypersensitivity to the antigens in these legumes was demonstrated by means of immediate skin reactivity, histamine release tests, RAST and RAST inhibition. Specific bronchial challenges with the heated (75 degrees for 30 min) extracts of chick pea and lentil elicited isolated immediate responses. (Martin 1992 ref.543 43)

Martin JA, Compaired JA, de la Hoz B, Quirce S, Alonso MD, Igea JM, Losada E. Bronchial asthma induced by chick pea and lentil. Allergy 1992;47:185-187

[ 26 / 31 ]

Chickpea is an important source of allergen in India that can cause IgE-mediated hypersensitivity reactions ranging from rhinitis to anaphylaxis. Of 1,400 patients screened for chickpea allergy, 142 were food allergy positive on history, of which 59 implicated chickpeas. Thirty one were DBPCFC-positive for chickpea. (Niphadkar 1992 ref.270 31)

Niphadkar, PV Patil, SP, Bapat, MM. Legumes the most Important food allergen in India. Allergy 1992;47:318

[ 27 / 31 ]

A 54-year-old female patient, diagnosed of nasal polyposis and intrinsic corticodependent bronchial asthma, who since a year has developed episodes of asthma when exposed to vapours from cooking some kinds of legumes (peas, chick-peas, beans, lentils) and an oral allergy syndrome with peanuts.The skin tests were clearly positive for legumes. Specific IgE by CAP was strongly positive for legumes. (Martin 1991 ref.32 112)

Martin MA, Compaired JA, de la Hoz B, Bronchial asthma induced by legumes (abstract). CH Schweiz med Wschr 1991;121:2297.S40

[ 28 / 31 ]

In this study, 102 patients with the initial diagnosis of idiopathic anaphylaxis were evaluated with a battery of 79 food-antigen skin prick tests selected to include foods reported or suspected of provoking anaphylaxis. Thirty-two patients (31%) had positive tests to one or more food antigens. In five of these patients, subsequently eating a food that elicited a positive test provoked an anaphylactic reaction. Two patients eliminated the foods completely, stopped having reactions, and refused challenge. In these seven patients, 10 different antigens provoked anaphylaxis: aniseed, cashew nut, celery, flaxseed, hops, mustard, mushroom, shrimp, sunflower, and walnut. We conclude that a battery of selected food-antigen skin prick tests provided a useful method for identifying an offending antigen in these patients and that some (7% in our series) cases of "idiopathic" anaphylaxis by history are not truly idiopathic.
The 10 antigens with positive clinical correlation
Antigens A B C
Aniseed 1 5 20
Cashew nut 1 2 50
Celery 2 4 50
Flaxseed 1 1 100
Hops 1 2 50
Mushroom 1 3 33
Mustard 2 3 66
Shrimp 1 3 33
Sunflower seed 1 3 33
Walnut 1 1 100
A = Total No. of positive skin tests with positive correlation
B = Total No. of positive skin tests
C = Percent of positive skin tests with positive correlation

Total number of positive skin prick tests.
2 - Almond
5 - Aniseed
1 - Artichoke
1 - Baker's yeast
1 - Beet
1 - Brazil nut
2 - Brewer's yeast
1 - Caraway seed
2 - Cashew nut
5 - Castor bean
4 - Celery
8 - Chamomile
2 - Chestnut
1 - Chicory
1 - Clam
2 - Coconut
1 - Cottonseed
2 - Crab
1 - Fennel
4 - Filbert (hazelnut)
I - Flaxseed
1 - Garbanzo bean
2 - Ginger
1 - Halibut
1 - Honey
2 - Hops
3 - Horseradish
1 - Lentil
1 - Lima beans
2 - Lobster
2 - Mango
1 - Milk
5 - Millet
3 - Mushroom
3 - Mustard
1 - Nutmeg
2 - Pea
1 - Pistachio
3 - Poppy seed
2 - Sesame seed
3 - Shrimp
3 - Sunflower
1 - Thyme
1 - Tumeric
1 - Walnut
None for Allspice, Apple, Banana, Bay leaf, Black pepper, Buckwheat, Cantaloupe, Chicken, Chili pepper, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Clove, Cod, Corn, Cumin seed, Dill seed, Egg, Garlic, Juniper berry, Orange, Oyster, Peach, Peanut, Potato, Psyllium seed, Raspberry, Sage, Salmon, Soybean, Strawberry, Sweet potato, Tangerine, Tapioca, Vanilla.
7 patients with positive clinical correlation to a SPT
1 : Aniseed
2 : Shrimp
3 : Mustard, flaxseed
4 : Celery, hops
5 : Celery, mustard, sunflower
6 : Walnut, cashew nut
7 : Mushroom
(Stricker 1986 ref.9 3606)

Stricker WE, Anorve Lopez E, Reed CE. Food skin testing in patients with "idiopathic anaphylaxis". J Allergy Clin Immunol 1986;77:516-519

[ 29 / 31 ]

Urticaria, angioedema, abdominal symptoms, rhinoconjunctivitis and/or asthma following ingestion or inhalation of vapours from cooked legumes (lentil, bean or chick-pea). Lentil was found to induce the most severe reactions. (Carrillo 1986 ref.2349 5)

Carrillo Diaz T, Cuevas Agustin M, et al. In vitro immunologic diagnosis of hypersensitivity to vegetables. [Spanish] Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 1986;14(2):139-46

[ 30 / 31 ]

Allergic Reactions to "Exotic" Natural Foods: A Selected List from Personal Clinical Observations (no other information supplied):
Common name -- Clinical symptoms
Kiwi fruit -- Anaphylaxis, angioedema
Pineapple -- Contact dermatitis, rhinitis, urticaria
Sea urchin -- Stomatitis, urticaria
Papaya -- Urticaria, colitis
Turtle -- Urticaria
Chickpea -- Urticaria, colitis
Fig -- Stomatitis, urticaria:
Squid -- Urticaria
Mango -- Urticaria, a ngi oedema
Pinon nut -- Anaphylasds, ang] oedema
Pomegranate -- Urticaria, rhinitis, asthma
(Falliers 1983 ref.211 37)

Falliers CJ. Anaphylaxis to Kiwi fruit and related "exotic" items. J Asthma 1983;20:193-196

[ 31 / 31 ]

Fifteen cases of systemic allergic reactions to ingcslant antigens arc reported. penicillin, pinto bean, halibut, rice, potato, Brazil nut, shrimp, milk, a cereal mix, garbanzo bean, tangerine, salicylsalicylic acid, and demethylchlortetracycline.

A 37-year-old woman with dyspnea, generalized urticaria and angioedema, and syncope. She was unconscious with laryngeal stridor, pulmonary wheezing, cyanosis, angioedema of the face and oropharynx, and generalized urticaria. Subsequently, 4 reactions of varying severity occurred. Pinto bean became apparent from a diet diary. A prick test with extract prepared from fresh, raw pinto bean caused a large local cutaneous reaction and was followed by mild generalized symptoms of dyspnea, wheezing, pruritus, and flushing.

A 27-year-old man, while ingesting halibut and toast, abruptly developed dyspnea, generalized urticaria, facial angioedema, dizziness, "faintness," diarrhea, nausea, and emesis. He was hypotensive. Wheezing, generalized urticaria, and facial angioedema were present. A similar reaction occurred several months earlier while ingesting halibut. A cutaneous prick test was strongly positive to halibut extract.

A 21-year-old woman experienced dyspnea, dizziness, pruritus, swelling of the face, weakness, headache, and abdominal cramps. These symptoms developed while ingesting rice. Similar reactions, including syncope, had previously occurred during ingestion of rice. She had facial angioedema, generalized urticaria, cyanosis, and wheezing. A cutaneous prick test was strongly positive with a dilute solution of rice extract.

A 17-year-old boy with wheezing, dyspnea, angioedema, dizziness, weakness, and chest pain described as "tightness" which occurred repeatedly after ingestion of potato. Cutaneous scratch tests were positive to potato extract.

A 28-year-old man who experienced immediate systemic allergic reactions numerous times after ingestion of Brazil nut, pistachio nut, and cashew. Reactions were characterized by rhinorrhea, dyspnea; cyanosis; angioedema of face, tongue, and pharynx; abdominal cramps; weakness; and dizziness. A cutaneous scratch test with Brazil nut extract was performed elsewhere and caused a large local reaction and wheezing.
A 24-year-old with a history of ingestion of shrimp and lobster which had repeatedly caused rhinorrhea, angioedema of face and oropharynx, urticaria, dyspnea, wheezing, dizziness, and syncope. A cutaneous prick test with shrimp extract was markedly positive. He later ingested shrimp casserole to avoid insulting a girl friend despite knowledge of his sensitivity to this food. Pruritus, generalized urticaria, swelling of the face and neck, dyspnea, dysphagia, laryngeal stridor, weakness, and dizziness developed immediately.
A 5-month-old with reactions which invariably followed ingestion of pasteurized but otherwise uncooked milk. Reactions were characterized by pallor, cyanosis, muscle flaccidity, and generalized urticaria.. On one occasion, milk was accidentally spilled on him; urticaria developed at all sites of contact. Further cutaneous testing was deferred. He tolerated milk in baked foods.
A 49-year-old man with dyspnea, swelling of the face and oropharynx, pruritus, urticaria, and dyspnea which developed while he was ingesting a cereal mix. Angioedema of the face, generalized urticaria, cyanosis, and wheezing were present. Cutaneous prick tests were positive with the specific lot of cereal mix which the patient was ingesting. Cutaneous tests with individual ingredients of the cereal mix were negative. The reaction is attributed to the specific lot of cereal mix and may have been caused by a contaminant.
Case 10
A 39-year-old with dizziness, dyspnea, wheezing, generalized pruritus, and swelling of the face and oropharynx. Positive findings included rhinorrhea, lacrimation, generalized urticaria, and angioedema of the face and oropharynx. Partially cooked garbanzo bean (chick-pea) was ingested immediately prior to his reaction. A cutaneous prick test with this food was positive. He tolerated well-cooked beans.

Case 11
A 33-year-old woman suddenly developed generalized pruritus, dyspnea, abdominal "cramps," nausea, and dizziness while eating a meal. Physical findings included generalized urticaria, angioedema of face and oropharynx, and wheezing. Tangerine was among the foods ingested before the reaction. A cutaneous prick test with fresh tangerine juice was positive. She subsequently ingested lemonade and fresh orange without adverse effect. Cutaneous tests with fresh orange juice were negative.

A 37-year-old man with adverse effects to salicylsalicylic acid and acetylsalicylic acid.

A 34-year-old male physician experienced within 20 minutes of ingestion of demethylchlortetracycline, headache, transient syncope, dyspnea, "tightness in the chest," angioedema of the face and hands, and generalized urticaria developed. Findings were generalized urticaria, periorbital edema, and edema of the hands and feet.

A 22-year-old man with chest pain dyspnea, swelling of the face, generalized pruritus, and syncope developed while lie was ingesting a meal. Similar reactions had occurred 5 times previously. The causative antigen was undetermined, but all reactions followed ingestion of various foods containing a large mold content. (Golbert, 1969 ref.286 73)

Golbert, T, Patterson, R, Pruzansky, JJ. Systemic allergic reactions to ingested antigens. J Allergy 1969;44:96-107

Non-Immune reactions

[ 1 ]

Crohn's disease discovered by an obstructing chick pea. (Amonkar 2007 ref.20745 0)

Amonkar SJ, Hughes T, Browell DA. Crohn's disease discovered by an obstructing chick pea. Br J Hosp Med (Lond) 2007 Aug;68(8):445.

[ 2 ]

Ungerminated legume seeds (broad bean, chick pea and lupine) were found to contain biogenic amines. Tryptamine was the main biogenic amine detected, and its concentration considerably increased during the germination. beta-Phenylethylamine was detected in small amounts and its concentration slowly increased during germination. The concentration of tyramine showed a fluctuation pattern of changes during germination in all tested legumes. Heat treatment seems to have little effect on the concentration of biogenic amines in legume sprouts. (Shalaby 2000 ref.7438 1)

Shalaby AR. Changes in biogenic amines in mature and germinating legume seeds and their behavior during cooking. Nahrung 2000;44(1):23-7

[ 3 ]

Hemagglutinating activity was identified in the roots and vegetative tissues of Bengal gram using rabbit erythrocytes. The activity in the roots appears to be similar to that of the seeds in respect to their sugar inhibition property. (Nair 2000 ref.7375 3)

Nair GN, Das HR. Hemagglutinins in vegetative tissues of Bengal gram. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 2000;55(3):243-53

[ 4 ]

A 2-year-old white asthmatic male who choked on a chick pea and presented with subcutaneous emphysema, and on chest X-ray with an isolated pneumomediastinum but not pneumothorax. (Ramadan 1992 ref.22804 7)

Ramadan HH, Bu-Saba N, Baraka A, Mroueh S. Management of an unusual presentation of foreign body aspiration. J Laryngol Otol 1992 Aug;106(8):751-2.

[ 5 ]

The foliage and seedpods contain oxalic acid and can irritate the skin. Oxalic acid can lock up certain nutrients in the diet, especially calcium, and therefore heavy use of foods that contain this substance can lead to nutritional deficiencies. Cooking will greatly reduce the oxalic acid content. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones or hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet, since the oxalic acid can aggravate their condition.

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