Odd as it seems, researchers say that bites from the voracious lone star tick are making some people allergic to red meat—even if they’ve never had a problem eating it before. …

The allergic reactions range from vomiting and abdominal cramps to hives to anaphylaxis, which can lead to breathing difficulties and sometimes even death.

Unlike most food allergies, the symptoms typically set in three to six hours after an affected person eats beef, pork or lamb—often in the middle of the night. …

He noticed that the reaction occurred every time he ate lamb for dinner, even though he had never had food allergies before. Then it happened with steak and then hamburger. “I swore off red meat completely and the reactions stopped,” says Mr. Piazza. When he heard about the tick connection, it made sense, given his work. “I get ticks all the time,” he says.