Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pine Nut Mayhem

Saturday morning I woke up with a weird sore throat. It was different than any other sore throat I have ever had. But, I had to work at the fair, get the Pure Country Pet Boutique dog clothes booth up and running for my daughter. So even though I felt yucky, I had to push through it. By the end of the day I was really feeling bad. I woke up several times at night and had a high fever. I couldn't find any other medicine, so I took Benedryl. Good thing. Turns out I had a reaction to Pine nuts. 2 days later my fever is gone, but I can't taste anything but a yucky detergent taste in my mouth. This is not a good thing for a cook. Turns out a lot of people have this reaction to Pine nuts that come from China. This problem is called Pine Nut Intoxication, Pine Mouth amonst other things, and there is a lot of info out there about it.
It is even on Epicurious: http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/blogs/editor/2009/05/got-pine-mouth.html 
steady Health: http://www.steadyhealth.com/Bitter_taste_in_mouth_while_eating-t85978-0-asc-50.html
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pine_nut
Pinch My Salt: http://pinchmysalt.com/2009/05/02/pine-nuts-left-a-bitter-taste-in-my-mouth/
iVillage: http://foodrush.ivillage.com/food/archives/2009/05/do-pine-nuts-leave-a-bad-taste.html
There are thousands of posts about this problem. Course I had an allergic reaction, on top of the pine mouth.
There is however temporary relief of the horrible taste. After hours of reading I found a post that said if you cut up a large chunk of ginger into small pieces, boil it with 1 quart water... reduce heat once it boils and simmer for 20 minutes. Add some honey and lemon and drink. It relieves the bad taste for 20 - 30 minutes. Long enough to enjoy a meal... thank goodness. I will never eat pine nuts again. That is sad for me. Because I love pesto. But I was told that each time I eat them, my reaction can worsen each time. Which is probably why it went undiagnosed before.

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