Food allergies, sensitivities and intolerances are where the immune system responses to a food as though it were harmful to the body.
Food allergies are where the immune system responses to a food as though it were harmful to the body by producing IgE antibodies that then produce histamine which it uses to protect itself. The most common foods that cause allergic reactions are milk, wheat, eggs, peanuts and soya. Once an allergic response has occurred and a person is re-exposed to the food allergen then the response can be more easily triggered. The allergy usually presents within a few minutes to a couple of hours after ingestion and a person may need to seek medical intervention.
Food intolerances are a non-immune response to a disagreeable food. The most common are gluten, lactose and casein, preservatives, additives.
Symptoms of food allergies:
- Swollen tongue, lips, throat, face
- Itchy red skin
- Diahorrea / abdominal cramping
- Wheezing, shortness of breath, coughing
- Loss of consciousness
Symptoms of food sensitivities:
- Nutrient deficiencies
- Brain fog
- Low mood
- Skin conditions
- Weight gain
What are the main causes/antagonists of food sensitivities?
- High histamine foods such as aged cheese, smoked fish, fermented foods and leftovers
- Food additives such as preservatives, MSG, and colourings.
- Tyramine foods
Things you can do?
- Try an elimination diet. This helps to identify which foods are causing you symptoms. It is a short-term diet for 4-6 weeks eliminating foods that typically can cause reactions. After this time the immune system tends to ‘forget’ the immune reaction that it had so you can then introduce each food, one at a time with one new food every 3 days to see if it triggers a symptom.
Foods to eliminate
- Citrus Fruits
- Processed Foods
What can Functional Medicine do to support?
- Guide you through an elimination diet, potentially excluding other food groups depending on your specific symptoms and to help re-introduce the foods safely back into your diet.
- Use functional testing to determine foods that are producing an IgE or IgG immune reactions.
- Support and balance the immune system and reduce inflammation using foods and supplements.
- Investigate digestive function and help to restore balance to help calm the gut immune response.
5 Pillars of Functional Medicine
Food sensitivities and Functional Medicine
Do you suffer from food sensitivities and have tried all the usual approaches?
Functional Medicine can help you, simply book an online consultation or arrange a free 15 minute discovery call and ﬁnd out how we can help.