Food

7 Signs You Might Have Food Allergies or Intolerances

Food allergies or intolerances are actually more common than you might think. Before I get into the seven signs you might have a food allergy or intolerance, I want to explain the difference between the two.

A food allergy is an immune system response that affects more than one organ in the body. It can be as severe as an anaphylactic reaction. Food intolerances are usually related to the body’s inability to properly breakdown and digest specific foods. Food intolerances are usually much less serious, but they can cause a lot of discomfort.

1.    You get stomach cramps You get painful stomach cramps after eating foods you are intolerant to because your body can’t properly break them down and digest them. These foods can actually damage your digestive tract and cause you to go running for the bathroom.

2.    You are farting and burping like a frat boy and look 5 months pregnant by the end of the day If your body can’t or doesn’t produce the enzymes necessary to break down a certain food, the undigested food hangs out in the digestive tract and starts to ferment. As it ferments, it produces gas which causes you to fart, burp and makes your stomach expand to make you look preggers.

3.    You have eczema that is not weather related Eczema occurs when foods trigger an immune reaction that stimulates the release of histamines. This is usually a delayed reaction and can be difficult to trace back to a particular food.

4.    You feel really sleepy after meals Food is supposed to leave you feeling energized! Some doctors believe hidden food allergies can make you want to nap after meals. This happens when the reaction or allergy isn’t severe enough to cause itching or hives.  

5.    You get chronic headaches and migraines Headaches and migraines involve an inflammatory reaction in the head which can be caused by eating certain foods. MSG is a common culprit along with alcohol, beloved chocolate and caffeine.

6.    You eat well and exercise, but you can't seem to lose weight The inflammatory reaction that happens when you eat foods you are allergic to can also cause your adrenals to release hormones that destabilize your insulin and blood sugar levels. High insulin levels start a chain reaction which triggers your body to hang on to fat rather than allowing you to burn it for energy during your workout.

7.    You find your nose is stuffy all year around

This is really common in people who are allergic to dairy because it is extremely mucus forming. If you are allergic to dairy, your body sees it as a foreign protein and you produce histamines which end up as the mucus that stuffs up your nose.

If any of the symptoms sound like you, you might want to speak with a holistic nutritionist who can test you for food intolerances. A holistic nutritionist can guide you through the testing process and teach you how to interpret the results. They can also provide you with the tools you need to start eliminating food intolerance symptoms.

Jesse Lane Lee, CNP