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Side effects of kiwi fruit

06 Jun, 2024


Kiwi, also known as Chinese gooseberry, is a vibrant, green fruit packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It’s often celebrated for its health benefits, including high vitamin C content, dietary fiber, and its role in boosting the immune system. However, like any other food, kiwi is not without its potential side effects. While these effects are typically rare and vary from person to person, it's important to be aware of them, especially if you’re considering adding more kiwi to your diet.


Allergic Reactions

One of the most significant concerns with kiwi consumption is the risk of allergic reactions. Kiwi allergies can range from mild to severe and are more common than many people realize. Symptoms of a kiwi allergy may include:


  • Itching or swelling of the mouth, lips, and throat: This is often the first sign of an allergic reaction.
  • Skin reactions: Hives or rashes may develop after handling or consuming kiwi.
  • Gastrointestinal issues: Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea can occur.
  • Respiratory problems: In severe cases, individuals may experience difficulty breathing or anaphylaxis, which requires immediate medical attention.
  • If you suspect you have a kiwi allergy, it's crucial to seek advice from a healthcare professional and possibly undergo allergy testing.


Oral Allergy Syndrome

Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS) is a condition where individuals who are allergic to certain pollens also react to fruits, including kiwi. This cross-reactivity is due to the similarity in protein structures between the pollen and the fruit. People with hay fever, especially those allergic to birch, ragweed, or grass pollens, might experience OAS when eating kiwi. Symptoms typically include:

  • Tingling or itching in the mouth and throat: These symptoms usually appear shortly after consuming the fruit.
  • Swelling of the lips, tongue, and throat: In more severe cases, this can make swallowing or breathing difficult.


 Digestive Issues

While kiwi is known for its high fiber content, which can aid digestion, it can also cause problems for some people:

  • Diarrhea: Overconsumption of kiwi can lead to excessive fiber intake, resulting in diarrhea.
  • Bloating and gas: Some individuals might experience bloating or gas due to the fruit's fiber content and its natural sugars.


 Oxalate Content

Kiwi contains oxalates, which can be problematic for individuals prone to kidney stones. Oxalates can bind with calcium in the urine, potentially leading to the formation of calcium oxalate kidney stones. If you have a history of kidney stones, it's advisable to consult with a healthcare provider about the amount of kiwi that is safe for you to consume.


Blood Clotting

Kiwi is rich in vitamin K, which plays a crucial role in blood clotting. While this is beneficial for many, it can interfere with blood-thinning medications like warfarin. If you are on such medications, it’s essential to monitor your vitamin K intake and consult your doctor to ensure it does not affect your treatment.


Latex-Fruit Syndrome

Latex-fruit syndrome is a type of cross-reactivity where individuals allergic to latex may also react to certain fruits, including kiwi. This happens because the proteins in latex are similar to those in kiwi. Symptoms can be similar to those of a kiwi allergy and may include skin reactions, itching, or more severe respiratory issues.



While kiwi is undoubtedly a nutritious and delicious fruit, it’s essential to consume it mindfully, especially if you have a history of allergies, digestive issues, or other health concerns. If you experience any adverse reactions after eating kiwi, it's best to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the cause and appropriate measures to take. Enjoying kiwi as part of a balanced diet can provide numerous health benefits, but being aware of its potential side effects ensures that you can savor this fruit safely.


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