By Toni Eatros, MS, Dipl Ac, AP
Have you been suffering with chronic symptoms that aren’t life threatening, but are annoying and affect the quality of your life? Symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation or skin issues? The immune system is the body’s way of telling you that you may be intolerant or sensitive to certain foods.
Why Would You Be Sensitive to Food?
There are many reasons you can become sensitive to foods. Stress is usually the original culprit. If you have ever had a period of time where stress was high and continuous, such as divorce, loss of a loved one, college, job loss, abuse, etc., then your digestive system was impacted. These life stressors coupled with drinking alcohol, eating a poor diet, taking NSAIDS, antibiotics, and oral birth control pills and intestinal infections will all lead to a leaky gut.
When we are in the stress state, also known as the fight or flight response, we generate high amounts of cortisol hormone to help us get through the stressful moment. When we are perpetually in this stressed state, our body becomes catabolic. This means that we start to break down tissue like lean muscle mass, bone and the lining of the digestive tract. As the digestive tract begins to break down and become damaged we end up with a weakened immune response in the digestive tract and a leaky gut. You can think of the leaky gut like a garden hose with a bunch of holes poked into it with an ice pick.
When the gut is leaky, the lining of the gut becomes permeable. When the gut is permeable, the food isn’t broken down all of the way and large molecules of food start to pass through the gut wall and directly into the blood stream. The immune system sees these large molecules as foreign and mounts a response. The immune response can manifest in a variety of chronic symptoms.
Symptoms Associated with Food Sensitivities:
• Unexplained Fatigue/Poor Sleep
• Gas or bloating
• Poor absorption of valuable vitamins and minerals
• Reflux and heartburn
• Hives, rash, eczema, or edema
• Joint pain and inflammation
• Headache or migraine
• Frequent colds or flus, recurrent sinus infections
• Diarrhea or soft stool
• Autoimmune conditions
• Joint pain
• Anxiety and/or depression
• Weight gain
When the immune system reacts to a food in this way, it can lead to inflammation and irritation of the intestine every time the food is eaten. Food allergies are distinct from food sensitivities. Allergies can result in life-threatening reactions. Food sensitivities result in milder symptoms such as diarrhea, gas or bloating but also create inflammation that drives many pathologies and prevents improvement.
How Can I Tell What Foods I Am Sensitive To?
A food sensitivity immune reaction can occur up to two or three days after eating the triggering food. This delayed reaction can make it very difficult to figure out what foods are giving you trouble. By testing what foods are causing your body to mount an immunological response, you can eliminate the guess work about what to eat and what foods to avoid until you can address the root cause as to why you are sensitive to these foods in the first place. The more foods that you show sensitivities to, the more impaired your digestive tract and the more healing needs to occur.
If you think you are sensitive to one or more foods you can do some detective work on your own to find out. You can do something called an elimination diet. During an elimination diet, you eliminate particular foods for two weeks to see if your symptoms improve or resolve completely. If you are only sensitive to one food, this works pretty well. However, if multiple foods cause you problems, and you only eliminate one of them, your symptoms will not completely resolve because you are still eating an offending food.
By doing an easy, finger stick blot test in the office, you can test 140 of the most commonly eaten foods and see to what degree you are sensitive. This test is very informative as it tells you on a bar graph how reactive your body is when you consume the different foods. Some foods you may have a very slight reaction to and other foods you might have extreme reactions. Go to, AcupunctureSolutionsOnline.com/
foodpanel to see a sample report.
Testing will tell you what foods need to be avoided so you can stop damaging your digestive tract and you can start the healing process. If you want to address the root cause as to why you are reacting to these foods, you would want to get more information about adrenal hormone testing.
At Acupuncture and Natural Health Solutions, we offer these testing services and strive to address the root cause of disease instead of just covering up symptoms. Normally, we charge $1034 for the first functional medicine visit to determine your current health and what tests are most appropriate, the test kit and the return visit where we discuss results.
We want to reward those who strive for optimal health. We know you want optimal health because you are reading these words right now. As a reward, if you mention this article, you will receive the comprehensive functional medicine first office visit, the 140 Food IgG Food Sensitivity Test, and the return visit where we discuss the results of the test and a customized treatment strategy based on your unique results for only $494. This is a savings of $540!
Schedule online now, at AcupunctureSolutionsOnline.com or call 239-260-4566 during normal business hours and take the next step toward optimal health.