Another common presentation to my practice

A significant number of individuals grappling with adverse reactions to food often remain unaware that specific foods may be triggering their symptoms. Additionally, the role of food reactions tends to be underestimated when considering their impact on chronic health conditions. These reactions can be categorized into three main groups: allergies, intolerances, and sensitivities.

Food Allergies

Genuine food allergies trigger immune responses immediately after consuming a specific food. Symptoms can vary from mild to severe, including a rash, swollen or itchy tongue, runny nose, hives, abdominal pain, vomiting, breathing difficulties, coughing, wheezing, or even a closed airway.

Common food allergens encompass peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, and sesame. Additionally, various other foods may induce allergic reactions.

Food Intolerances

Non-immune reactions to specific food components, like lactose, histamine, or alcohol, characterize food intolerances. These reactions occur when an individual lacks the digestive enzymes or nutrients necessary for breaking down those components. Intolerances may manifest as flushing, flu-like symptoms, inflammation, or general discomfort.

Common food intolerances include dairy products, sulphites, histamines, lectins, preservatives, artificial colours, fillers, flavourings, chocolate, citrus fruits, and acidic foods.

Food Sensitivities

Food sensitivities result in delayed reactions, often occurring hours or even days after consumption. Typically, these reactions stem from imbalances in the gastrointestinal system affecting the immune system, such as increased intestinal permeability or “leaky gut.”

Symptoms of food sensitivities vary among individuals and can be influenced by the type of food consumed.

Some common symptoms include migraines, headaches, dizziness, difficulty sleeping, mood swings, depression, anxiety, unintended weight changes, dark under-eye circles, asthma, irregular heartbeat, irritable bowels, bloating, wheezing, runny nose, sinus problems, ear infections, food cravings, muscle or joint pain, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, bladder control issues, fatigue, hyperactivity, hives, rashes, dry skin, excessive sweating, and acne.

Common food sensitivities encompass cow’s milk (and other dairy products), eggs, gluten (from wheat, rye, and barley), soy, shellfish, and tree nuts. Many other foods and ingredients may also elicit sensitivity reactions.

Discovering Adverse Food Reactions

For those grappling with a food allergy, awareness typically guides them to avoid known trigger foods. If you or your healthcare provider suspects a food intolerance or sensitivity, the most effective method for pinpointing problematic foods involves a temporary elimination from your diet, followed by a systematic reintroduction, meticulously noting your body’s reactions.

While certain laboratory tests may aid in assessing food sensitivities and intolerances, opting for an elimination diet is often considered the most accurate approach.

However, an elimination diet is the cheapest, albeit hardest for some to comprehend and you may benefit from doing some functional food sensitivities and intolerances test.

DM me on Instagram or Facebook for more info on my online program for Elimination Diet or what investigations to order.