When Is A Tomato Not Just A Tomato?

I should know better. I should. With our food sensitivities and celiac and following a gluten-free diet I know to be careful. But I needed some diced tomatoes because I love the convenience of having tomatoes on hand for some of my recipes. 

I was in the store and I picked up a box of Pomi Chopped Tomatoes. I had tried this brand once before and we had a reaction to it, because it may possibly contain some hidden corn. Many on the corn-free boards and websites had posted about their reaction to it but as I read the label I thought how could I have had a reaction to it. There's nothing in it I'm sensitive to and I reread the label.

100% From Fresh Italian Tomatoes

And then I read the side label:

No Artificial Flavour (their spelling)
No Preservatives
No Water Added
No Citric Acid

That’s It, Just Tomatoes.

I thought how could I have had a reaction to tomatoes. I must have been mistaken and so I bought them again. 

What a mistake and a painful way to learn a lesson. I probably should have taken a photo of my stomach after eating them. I bloated so badly I almost felt like someone had pumped my stomach full of air like a balloon. Within a half an hour of eating them both me and my daughter felt nauseous.

Lesson learned. So for now on I'll remember that labels don’t always tell the whole story. I’ll trust my body and it's reaction to a food as well as the information on many of the corn-free shopping lists where others, too, had noted their reactions to the Pomi brand tomatoes. 

And as far as the convenience of canned tomatoes, we have been doing well with the Cento brand of tomato products and use any that do not contain contain citric acid. No one in our family has a reaction to it. Many canned tomatoes have citric acid as an added ingredient. Citric acid is often derived from corn so we try to avoid it.

Other than that I think I’ll simply have to give up a bit of convenience and get busy chopping away my own tomatoes. And I'll keep hoping for the day when once again a tomato is just that - a tomato.

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eader Comments from Previous Website (2)

I came across your blog while searching for anyone else who has had a reaction to Pomi. I am not allergic to tomatoes, however 20 minutes after trying just a bite of this product for the first time, I had an allergic reaction. Itchy ears, nose, eyes, throat, and my throat began to swell. Since I do have food allergies (not to corn though) I also think there may be something else in it. Wouldn't touch this product again with a ten foot pole! :)

January 26, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTBroda

Totally agree with you. I will never buy one of their products again. Sorry to hear you had such a strong reaction to whatever it was, though, but that really makes me wonder even more just what is in there. And you don't have sensitivites to corn. Hmm . . . I'd guess maybe it might be something in the packaging. Maybe in the box itself. Maybe the glue in the box - who knows? Could it be the material that lines the box? And oddly it was the fact that it wasn't in a can that made me give it one more try.

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