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Yes, You Can Be Allergic To Marijuana

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Connor Purdon, 25, is a long-time marijuana user who recently smoked weed with a high concentration of THC — the active ingredient in marijuana that produces the drug's psychological effects. As Canada's CBC News reported, Purdon experienced an unexpected reaction.

"I hit one of those, and I'm not sure if I rubbed something in my eye, or what happened, but I had a heavy kind of allergy reaction to my face," Purdon told CBC News. 

The next morning, his eyes were reportedly still swollen and "really, really red."

Is there such a thing as a marijuana allergy? You betcha. 

Weed allergy "definitely exists," Dr. Leo Galland, co-author of The Allergy Solution, said in a phone interview Thursday. Symptoms "could be almost anything," he said. "Skin rash and wheezing are most likely, but it could also be nausea, vomiting or diarrhea."

Galland hasn't personally treated anyone with a marijuana allergy, but past research suggests it's the real deal. 

In 2014, Belgian researchers found that cannabis sativa, one of the two main types of cannabis, "can cause allergic rhinitis (hay fever), conjunctivitis (pinkeye), skin rashes and asthmatic symptoms when smoked, inhaled or chewed," according to the NY Daily News

Another study, in 2000, found a link between cannabis pollen in the U.S. Midwest and patients' respiratory symptoms, according to Medical Daily. It concluded that "cannabis could be a clinically important aeroallergen for certain patients and should be further studied."

How do you become allergic to weed? It comes down to panallergens: allergenic proteins found in multiple different plants, according to Galland.

Panallergens are found in marijuana plants, but they're also found in fruits like melons, bananas and tomatoes, and in pollen from ragweed and grass, he said. If someone develops an allergy to one of those plants, "they may be more susceptible to being allergic to marijuana," Galland said. 

Be careful when rolling joints: "You are more likely to get allergic to something if you're exposed [to it] through your skin," Galland said. 

Ingesting it orally may be safer, allergy-wise, because "your gut has mechanisms for avoiding allergy that our skin doesn't have," he said. 

Marijuana-infused Nutella might just be your best bet.


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Had to resort to allergy meds the other day.  Still blowing my nose and a little tired.  The first nite I got the shivers and cold sweats. That's when I took the pill.  I don't want to rely on them.  My wife takes them everyday. It's been 2 years(they say it takes that long for new allergies to kick in after relocating?) here and I'm still eating the honey from NYS. Have to find a local producer and see if that helps.  The Kimchi helped a bit.  I don't like not being as active now that I'm healing.  Seems that set backs like these are more evident when your healthy.

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  • 3 weeks later...


Marijuana Allergies Are A Growing Problem


As much as we'd like to believe otherwise, it's entirely possible for a person to be allergic to pot.


Just like pollen, grass and ragweed, marijuana can trigger allergic reactions in certain people, and according to a new study, it's a growing problem.

"Although still relatively uncommon, allergic disease associated with C sativa exposure and use has been reported with increased frequency," the report states.


Experts say that cannabis allergies have most likely gone unreported due to the plant's illegal status, but in the wake of legalization (both medical and recreational), more and more people are reporting runny noses, coughing and sneezing due to cannabis pollen or smoke. One patient who ate hemp seeds experienced a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis.


I knew someone who was allergic to cannabis. I didn't believe them and they didn't want to ever smoke. Then one day they finally decided to smoke around me and their face turned an unnatural bright red with some swelling, running nose, ect. It is rare but does happen.

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