20 answers

Allergies to Fish

I think my 15 month is allergic to salmon. He has vomited the last two times after he ate it. I am wondering if he is allergic to all fish, or just salmon. I am taking him next week to the doctor to see if they can do allergy tests on him. I am wondering if anyone else has encountered this with their child and if so was it to all fish?

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

I personally have this same problem. I vomit EVERYtime I eat salmon, but have not experienced it with any other fish. It is a bummer too, because I really enjoy salmon. As far as I know this can happpen, I don't know why or how, but that has been my experience.

I would hold off on the testing. At 15 months the salmom may just be to rich. I would wait another 6 mos. even a year and try again. Even if it is an allergy he could outgow it. Give it time.

More Answers

Hi T.,
I am allergic to a lot of food. I don't eat fish, because I don't like it, but I am allergic to all seafood. The other day I ate ONE baby shrimp and my stomach was agetated all day. I thought I was going to throw up all day. If I do eat sea food, I throw up pretty violently. It tastes good to me, but it feels like poison in my body. I can't even describe the feeling. Head aches, chills, sweats, stomach feels wierd, swollen and itchy throat, with no soothing it until it is out of the system. Yes, I recommend he sees the doctor before the next fishy meal.


Dear T....
I hope by now you have stopped feeding your baby fish altogether for now. Fish can be toxic to adults for a myriad of reasons, I am surprised you are feeding your child salmon so early in his life with all of the reports about seafood that exist today. Luckily, there are other foods to feed your child for now, so do so, and leave the fish alone for a while...perhaps a long while, certainly until age 2 at least....maybe age 3. I'm sure your doctor will tell you the same thing and allergy testing won't be necessary yet. Another thought, sometimes some foods just don't hit our stomachs the right way, and maybe for your baby it's the fish, or the spices, or the preparation......see how it might be easier just to let it go for a time? Time and maybe maturation time will have a better result later in life for him.

my son when i introduced salmon when he was 8 months he vomitted 5 times in 1 hour. then tried for the second time after couple of weeks still he vomit. never tried with another fish. im scared..

I would hold off on the testing. At 15 months the salmom may just be to rich. I would wait another 6 mos. even a year and try again. Even if it is an allergy he could outgow it. Give it time.

Is it farmed or wild salmon? The majority of salmon consumed in the U.S. is farmed versus wild caught. There are many toxins & contaminants in farmed salmon including antibiotics, PCBs and dioxins which cause cancer, etc.
See, for example, this article http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/id/QAA324437
Problem is, many farmed salmon are escaping and invading (breeding with) the wild populations too.

Hi T...
I have allergies myself.. and it looks like my son may have inherited my allergies. This may sound weird... I'm allergic to all shellfish (shrimp, crab, etc.) but I can eat regular cooked fish like salmon and raw fish like sushi, my sister however, can eat shellfish and sushi but CAN'T eat fish once it is cooked. She and I get an allergic reaction when we eat what we're not supposed to. I was also allergic to dairy, peanuts, and avocado. When my son was born I tried giving him a soy formula but he just threw it all up and was lathargic all day. I've takin him to an allergist and a blood test will be done. He also has eczema around his ankles and on his arm. Does your boy have any ezcema?? If he does then it's a sure sign of allergies. hope this helps.. good luck!

My daughter who is 24 months had the same thing with salmon but did not to white fish. I am curious to see what you find out - my doctor says it is very rare to be allergic to salmon.

Dear T.:

My children's pediatrician used to tell me to pay close attention when I fed my young children (under two years of age) and to note if they didn't like the TASTE of certain foods. (Of course, vomiting would be even MORE alarming!)

At about 12 months, our son went from fussing, to welts, to excema and ultimately, to anaphylaxic shock. At that point, both children were tested for food allergies (I would imagine both YOUR children should be tested too!) and it turned out that the foods they had rejected as babies were the foods they were severly allergic to!

My boy was severely allergic to many things: peanuts, eggs, wheat, apples, etc. and his sister was allergic to quite a few DIFFERENT things! We changed their diets and eventually, they were able to integrate SOME things back into their diets (with doctor's supervision) but NEVER the biggies: peanuts or almonds.

Recently, my son had macadamia nuts which hadn't been on the original test. He vomited all night so we added it to his list of "don'ts". We still carry an epi-pen but both children have been brought up with "no fear, just caution".

Best wishes,


Many fish are full of toxins from the ocean including mercury and heavy metals. DO NOT feed your child fish. Children do not need this kind of thing in their little tummies. If you're worried about protein, feed your child nuts, grains, and beans. Contrary to some beliefs, good organic nuts, grains (like quinoa) and beans provide more than enough nutrition.

Please read this article on the dangers of seafood on fetuses and young children:

I think the allergy tests are a great idea. I am allergic to iodine, so I can't eat anything from the ocean or I go into anaphylaxis. But a lot of times it is a protein allergy, which would show up as antibodies on the allergy test. Just make sure to ask for the blood test. The scratch tests are good for seasonal and environmental allergies, but can give a lot of false negatives for food allergies. This happened with my daughter's milk allergy, and she is highly allergic to milk protein. The blood test will show an immune response. Keep in mind that you can still be extremely sensitive to a food without having a bonafide allergy to it. So even if the blood test comes back negative, it doesn't mean your son isn't highly sensitive to it. If your insurance will pay for it, ALCAT testing will reveal food sensitivities. They have a 50 panel test that tests the more common foods that people have problems with. As a precaution, you should avoid seafood until the test results come back. If you're lucky it will be just salmon. I can eat trout and catfish and other freshwater fish, but not ocean fish. It's best to know exactly what to avoid. Hope this helps, and good luck!

I personally have this same problem. I vomit EVERYtime I eat salmon, but have not experienced it with any other fish. It is a bummer too, because I really enjoy salmon. As far as I know this can happpen, I don't know why or how, but that has been my experience.

Hi T.,

I'd stay away from the salmon for now. And also, I have taken my sixteenth month old to the allergist three times. He has had skin tests those three separate times. They detected all sorts of things he is allergic to. But he still has allergies, issues, etc. So I started taking him to a homeopathic doctor and he told me that those skin tests don't really detect as well as they should, so it is a waste of time. Plus everyone says they will eventually grow out of things. And if that can prevent your baby from being poked numerous times, I'd believe that. Just give it some time and cut out the salmon.

Throwing up is one way that food allergies manifest. I've had them most of my life, as did my dad, and my friend has a kid who's severly allergic to milk. He throws up milk if he gets it. My kid throws up honey (even as a teen).

Forget allergy testing for this. Most allergy testing is useless and expensive. The only valuable allergy test is a blood test--RAST--and even it is not as reliable as your kid's own body's reactions. Whatever you want to call it, food allergy, food sensitivity, or whatever, your kid threw up after salmon. It really doesn't matter what some medical test says. Trust your child's body's reactions and don't give the kid salmon for a long while.

And no, a salmon allergy does not imply allergy to all fish. But 15 months is young to try this stuff. Wait a few months and then try him on other white fish. Wait a few years to try shellfish. It is soooo common to be allergic to.

Good luck.
A. G

One of my kids is allergic to fish and his mouth would itch and get swollen. I then started testing it on his wrist before giving him any kind of fish. If it went red or itchy, I wouldn't give it to him. I then started him on a new type of supplement that is safe for kids and he can now be around cats, eat salmon and when the winds kick in, he barely has to take a antihistamine. The same with me. My asthma is better and my allergies are gone. Keep your kids off milk, cheese and as much sugar as possible. Read your labels and if it's made in a lab, forget it!
If you want to know what products I use I'd be more than happy to share them with you.

Children under 2 years of age should not eat fish. It can be highly alergenic and the younger they are, if they have an alergic reaction, the more severe it can be. This goes for eggs and peanuts as well. Also, if he has had the same reaction twice in a row to ANY food, and the reaction is not associated with anything else, thats a pretty clear indication that his body is not happy with it. Stear clear of the fish and peanuts until he's at least 2, and the Salmon sounds like an issue, so I'd leave that out and maybe try it again when he's around 4 or 5. If he still gets sick, he should never eat it. If he is already eating eggs and doens't seem to be having a problem with them, he's probably okay on that. Take care,

My 2.5 year old girl was allergic to all seafood at first, from the time she was little. She would have red rash all over her face and it would be itchy and bothersome. Even when she just touches fish, the rash would come out seconds later on the skin that touched it. Now, she can eat shrimp and lobster and crab, but not fish, although the rash is not as severe. Recently, she'd been having stomach aches. Our naturopath pediatrician suggested we stop giving her fish oil. We give both our babies fish oil as part of their daily vitamin/supplement intake. We switched to flax oil. Her stomach aches stopped. We're hoping she outgrows this too as she grows older.

Was your child sick and throwing up? or did he just eat it and throw it up with no other symptoms? Throwing it up may just be a sign that his body isn't ready to digest that food. Usually with seafood allergies, especially shellfish like crab, shrimp, clams, and the like, the reaction is swelling. The swelling can occur in the the throat, tongue, face, or the whole body. It depends on the severity of the reaction. I'm not saying that your child isn't allergic, but a lot of doctors do not send children under the age of three for allergy testing as there can be many false negatives. If your doctor does not send him to be tested, just refrain from giving him fish until he's older. If she does give him the test I hope he isn't allergic. Food allergies are no fun. so I wish you all the best!!

Vomiting is not necessarily a sign of an allergic reaction though. I am personally allergic to octapus and squid but not fish or shrimp and my tonsil would swell and I would itch, but people respond differently to allergic reactions. Allergy tests are actually quite difficult and not easy to complete, it's going to take alot of time to make a conclusive determination. I would just refrain from giving him salmon until he's a little older and take it from there....

Have someone do the Elisa Act test for allergies. It's easier on the child and tests for over 100 different food allergies.

It could be just the salmon. I am highly allergic to salmon, but I am a fish fanatic and do well with all other types of fish. My daughter wont eat salmon but loves the more milder types of fish so no problems there, but salmon can be difficult for the more tender tummies, your child could possibly be allergic or the oil must just cause an upset stomach.

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