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Ask the Allergist

Ask the Allergist

Can I Eat Products like Kombu, With A Shellfish Allergy?

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I have a shellfish allergy. Can I safely eat a food, such as canned beans, if they contain Kombu Seaweed (edible brown kelp)?

Yes, you should be fine eating Kombu seaweed (dried sea kelp), despite your shellfish allergy. Kombu are large seaweeds or algae. They belong to the brown algae family. It is a natural flavor enhancer with health benefits. There are no relevant shellfish allergens in this product. You should be fine eating foods with ingredients like Kombu seaweed.

Food Allergy, Shellfish Allergy
Answered by

John M. James, MD, is a board-certified allergist. He is also President of Food Allergy Consulting and Education Services, LLC. He has worked as a medical specialist in the field of allergy, asthma, and immunology for over 30 years. Dr. James received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Tennessee. He is board certified by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology.

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