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When you or your child has an allergic reaction to a food, your body isn't reacting to the food itself. Rather, it's reacting to the proteins that make up that food. These proteins are made from amino acids, specific sequences of molecules. Once your body develops an allergy to a food, whenever it "sees" that sequence of amino acids, it will react to defend the body. This generally includes releasing large amounts of histamine. The histamine can cause a variety of symptoms including hives, swelling, vomiting, diarrhea, shortness of breath, elevated heart rate, runny nose, itchy eyes and finally anaphylaxis.