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Burning Question: Why Does Pineapple Irritate Your Mouth?

Yesterday I cut myself some fresh pineapple, then promptly proceeded to eat a lot of it before remembering that every time I eat a copious amount of pineapple, the roof of my mouth becomes itchy and sore. So why is this condition a common complaint among fresh pineapple aficionados?

Pineapples contain an plant protease enzyme called bromelain. Because it readily breaks down protein, bromelain is frequently used as a natural meat tenderizer. In addition, bromelain may also induce a prickly sensation in the mouth when consumed.

Although the enzyme is present in all parts of the pineapple plant, it's most concentrated in the stem, the hard piece in the middle of the fruit, which is much more fibrous and chewy but still edible. Many people believe that letting a pineapple sit overnight helps take away the irritation factor, but one surefire way to alleviate the burn is to cut out the core.

Megan15327628 Megan15327628 33 weeks 6 days
Many people don't know this, but pineapple eats at your flesh when eating it. That is what causes it hurting, burning, itching, and everything else.
3 years 20 weeks
Yup, I just bought my first ever fresh pineapple and proceeded to eat like 4 slices. That's like 8 canned slices! LOL. It was soooooooooooo yummy, I couldn't stop until my tongue started burning. I figured it was from the acidity, I'm sipping milk and letting it sit in my mouth for little while each time. It helps, but not curing it. Only time will cure it I"m sure.
4 years 12 weeks
The core, huh? I'll have to remember that. I ate about a two-inch thick slice of pineapple today, and the my whole mouth hurts. The corner of my lips burns. The tip of my tongue is covered in painful little bumps.
4 years 23 weeks
thankgod 4 tht! i always thought i was allergic and never ate it! now i can woohooo btw i looovvvee pineapple
4 years 41 weeks
lol fuck the feeling im eating this whole damn thing WOO! also MILF ON XBOX LVIE SEARCH xxpwnage21xx on youtube!
bernerowner bernerowner 5 years 1 week
Every time I eat fresh pineapple, my mouth stings and I've always wondered why until I googled it and ended up here. Now I know. I love the fruit but man, it really tears up my tongue!! I also found out on here that this fruit is good to marinate meat in and I'm going to try it one of these days. I also will cut back on eating so much pineapple all at once!
5 years 1 week
this may sound wierd but when i eat pinapples my face and the back of my head tingles i hat the way it feels i wonder what it could be
5 years 2 weeks
i get prickly feeling on my tongue too, but also with kiwi and pineaple it gives me prickly sensation on my face round my eyebrows and makes me feel all hot! what does this mean?
5 years 17 weeks
i second moem's comment. i just ate 25% of a honeydew melon, and the end of my tongue, the edges of where my upper lips meet my lower lips are all stinging, and are hurting. i had no idea that honeydew melons could sting so hard! next time i get any type of melon it'll be to juice it, no more eating slices for me!
lisas52 lisas52 5 years 18 weeks
I had gone to Hawaii for my honeymoon many moons ago (giggle) when I ate pineapple while out in the islands, I had no problems with it ripping up my mouth like it does here. Seems that I have the same issue with other fruits and the thing is, I just love fruit! Especially when someone else cuts it up! The pineapple in Hawaii is picked when ripe but the pineapple we get in the states is cut prior to it being ripe. Kind of like bananas, often they are still green in the store which is the way they are picked.
summerjams summerjams 5 years 20 weeks
just looking at the pictures gives my mouth tingling feeling, ack.
sparklemeetspop sparklemeetspop 5 years 20 weeks
I wonder if melon has the same thing, because I get that reaction after eating it. And I miss my honeydew and cantaloupe.
ceej ceej 5 years 20 weeks
Pineapple is also an excellent exfoliant, rub the inside of the skin on your own skin, a lot of cultures use it this way.
kurniakasih kurniakasih 5 years 20 weeks
Ah. I see. Pineapple is my most fave fruit growing up, hehe, and I always get that sensation on my tongue :) But, it never discourages me from eating it! :D Thanks for the tip.
annissa annissa 5 years 20 weeks
Ohhh! That explains it!
5 years 20 weeks
Sometimes that happens if the pineapple is not ripe enough. Give it a few more days to ripen, until you can smell the sweetness at the base of the leaves at the top and then cut up. You do need to make sure you remove all the core and the "hard" parts because that is what iritates also. I love pineapple!!
Sofia-Soubrette Sofia-Soubrette 5 years 20 weeks
mMm! PINEAPPLE! I had a pineapple margarita last week and hardly noticed the sting...of the fruit...
kevinstyle kevinstyle 5 years 20 weeks
Pineapple is also good with hot pepper sprinkled on it.
oni1 oni1 5 years 20 weeks
i can barely look at that picture. its like a bowl of razorblades. cooked/canned doesn't affect me as much.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 5 years 20 weeks
i love pineapple. i do get the weird tingky feeling on my lips and inside my mouth after eating it but it goes away after a while. :)
shoneyjoe shoneyjoe 5 years 20 weeks
@ bigestivediscui, that happened to my girlfriend this summer. She's so sad... :( As for the weird pineapple thing, I just figured everyone else was complaining about nothing, because I never experienced it myself.
LesleyP825 LesleyP825 5 years 20 weeks
I get really bad eczema on my hands and when I cut up fresh pineapple my hands break out. I've taken to wearing gloves now.
ilanac13 ilanac13 5 years 20 weeks
that's really good to know. i always wondered what it was and figured that it was just the acid in the fruit.
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 5 years 20 weeks
This doesn't happen to me with pineapple, but plums, cherries, and even apples (which I all love) make my mouth, throat and lips itch and swell up. I never used to have that when I was little, so I don't know how this has happened. :( Plums used to be my favorite fruit.
bluepuppybites bluepuppybites 5 years 20 weeks
Pineapple makes my niece's mouth bleed.