Have you been to a restaurant lately and had a member of your group make a special request due to food allergy? Have you noticed that restaurants don’t seem surprised by this and are extremely accommodating? Are you yourself experiencing new symptoms and wonder if they could be caused by the foods you’re eating?
Food allergies are clearly on the rise. Studies have shown that about 8% of people suffer from serious food allergies. The increase in food allergy incidence is a confusing and big problem. But today, I’m going to talk about something that affects even more people … food sensitivities.
Half of Americans report developing a food allergy over the age of 18, and many have trouble identifying the source of the problem and getting the help they need to fix it. Because the reactions cannot be tested with a skin prick or enzyme test, they can often have trouble being taken seriously by their doctors.
What kind of symptoms should we be looking for?
And, unlike food allergies, food intolerances can be very difficult to identify on your own, since sometimes the symptoms appear many hours after eating the offending food.
What is the mechanism causing this problem?
It’s important to consider what is happening in your body to cause this problem in the first place. This is the only way that you will be able to find the root cause and work to eliminate it.
One important link causing your food reactions is the presence of intestinal permeability, or “leaky gut.” Causes of leaky gut include stress, high sugar diet, processed food additives, pesticides, and medications. If left unaddressed, this can ultimately lead to autoimmune conditions down the road.
How does it affect my weight loss efforts?
Leaky gut creates an inflammatory reaction in the body, which leads to many negative symptoms, one of which is weight gain. It is very difficult to get a handle on our escalating weight without first addressing the inflammation.
This is because inflammation makes us resistant to insulin’s satisfaction message. No amount of willpower can compete with that. And, it can also alter neurotransmitter function leading to depressive symptoms, which cause increased carb cravings to elevate mood.
Ok, so how can we fix it?
First, we need to identify the cause and eliminate it. To identify an offending food, this means either an elimination diet or a food sensitivity test.
In addition, we need to add in whole, unprocessed foods and potentially other supplements such as probiotics.