My Allergy to Melted or Cooked Cheese
Diarrhea, an Upset Stomach, or Vomiting after Eating Cooked Cheese?
In this article, we are going to look at the issue of the melted cheese allergy. I have been allergic to melted or cooked cheese since I was a child. My father has the same problem. So I have been searching for answers: Can someone have a melted cheese allergy but be fine with normal, uncooked cheese? What is the difference between melted cheese and standard cheese? In this article, we will take a look at the answers to these questions.
I you have come here looking for answers as to why you are allergic to melted cheese, hopefully we can help you. Or maybe you know the reason and could shed some light on the matter—in that case, please post it in the comments.
First of all, let’s take a look at exactly what my problem is.
My History with Melted Cheese
I first became aware I had an issue with cooked cheese when I was around the age of five. I had attended a friend's party, and we all ate pizza. This was my first experience of pizza, and I do recall enjoying it. However, an hour later, it had all come back up. At the time, we were unsure what had caused me to be sick, but as time passed, it became clear that I was allergic to melted cheese. My father had the same problem—he would feel sick if he ate any cheese that had been cooked.
So let me make it clear exactly what I mean by cooked cheese. I am fine with all other dairy products. I can eat yogurt, drink milk, and eat normal cheese to my heart's content. But soon as it melts, something happens to the cheese, and it makes me vomit. A big chunk of cheddar will be fine, but slice it up and pop it under the grill until it melts, and you can guarantee my stomach won’t be able to deal with it.
Over the years, I have come in for some pretty strong abuse from friends who claim it is all in my head. The are convinced I can’t actually be allergic and it is just something I have made up.
A few years ago, some of my friends put this theory to the test. I visited their house for a meal and for starters we had stuffed peppers. The peppers had several tasty ingredients, one of which was cooked cheese. As there was only a small amount, and it was hidden away in the peppers, my friends assumed I would have no reaction, thus proving them right. I ate the peppers and commented how tasty they were. An hour later, I was hanging over the toilet, and my friends were apologising. This proved that the cheese allergy isn't psychosomatic.
Searching for Answers
In my past, this issue has come up time and time again. When I go out for a meal or visit a friend's for dinner, the issue of cooked cheese will inevitably arise. The fact is there are so many meals that contained cooked cheese that sooner or later someone is going to offer it to you. So I am often asked, "How can you be allergic to melted cheese and not normal cheese?" I hate being asked that question as I really don’t have an answer. I have spent hours searching online for answers, and I have found other people that suffer from the same problem, but as of yet, I have had no conclusive answers as to what the problem may be.
Usually, when it comes to medical problems, the Internet is a wealth of knowledge. But for some reason, there are very few answers to this particular question. One thing I have noticed is that there are plenty of theories out there. I have also had quite a few people offer their own theories as to why I have a melted cheese allergy. So now I want to tell you a few of the theories that people have come up with over the years.
The first one is one that I have little faith in. It has to do with lactose intolerance. I have seen many so-called professionals stick their noses out on forums and say, "Clearly you are lactose intolerant." However, if that were the case, surely I would have a problem with other dairy products. The fact is that every other dairy product I consume causes me no problems. I can eat masses of cheese and drink pints of milk and be just fine. So for me personally, I would say the theory of being lactose intolerant does not hold water.
Another theory is that the consistency of the cheese makes me sick. This is another one I have an issue with. Admittedly, I find melted cheese dribbling out of a grilled cheese unappealing since I know what it does to me. But cheese that has been cooked, but is no longer melted—for example, on cold pizza—has the same effect. What's more, last year, I made the mistake of eating broccoli and Stilton soup. I was sick once again, even though the consistency of the cheese was a liquid, not the gooey texture you get in a grilled cheese. So again, as far as I am concerned, this theory falls flat on its face.
One theory that I do subscribe to is one that I actually heard from a physics teacher. He was present at a dinner party I attended and the argument once again came up. To my surprise, he took my side in the argument and said that there is a chemical reaction in the cheese when it melts. The fats in the cheese separate. To be honest, a lot of what he said went over my head, but it involved trans fats and the way the body digests them. He also mentioned the fact that heating cheese can kill off the enzymes that help in digestion, so melted cheese can sometimes be harder to digest. This seems like a fair point, and it could explain the problem.
Not Alone with My Allergy
One thing that I have learnt while researching this whole problem is that I am not alone in my melted cheese allergy. The fact is that there are quite a few people out there who have the same problem. Although this is something that can be a nuisance, it is not the sort of issue that is going to be life threatening. That is probably one of the reasons why there is so little information about the allergy anywhere online.
If you know of anyone who has this allergic reaction or maybe you yourself struggle to digest melted cheese, feel free to post a comment on the bottom of the page. The same goes if actually have a conclusive answer to why it happens and have stumbled across this page. Either way, hopefully this article will have given you some clues as to why some people, including myself, are allergic to melted cheese.
Since writing this article, I have been amazed at how many people have gotten in contact with me. It turns out there are more people suffering from the problem of melted cheese intolerance than I first thought. As you can see from the comments below lots of people have the same reaction as I do to cooked cheese and many people have other similar problems to various other forms of dairy. It looks as though this is an issue that is now affecting more people than I had thought.