Most people know if they have a food allergy when their throat gets scratchy, swelling, difficulty breathing, hives, etc. However, there is another category of food intolerance or sensitivity that most people are unaware they have. Symptoms are not immediate and can be subtle if you don’t know what to look for. The most common foods that people are sensitive to are gluten, dairy, eggs, peanuts, sugar, corn, and soy.
When you think of food sensitivity most people think of digestive issues, but reactions to these 7 foods groups can present themselves throughout your entire body. Digestion: constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, heart burn, cravings. Did you know that the foods you crave are sometimes the foods you are most sensitive to?
Neurological: chronic headaches or migraines, nerve pain, depression, anxiety, brain fog, trouble focusing. Consuming foods your are sensitive to increases inflammation in your body and digestive tract, not only leading to digestive upset but a more serious condition of leaky gut syndrome. Since most of the feel good hormone serotonin is manufactured in the gut, if it is damaged that means less serotonin and less good feelings.
Skin: psoriasis, rosacea, and acne. Sometimes it can take 48-72 hours for symptoms to appear after eating a food in which you are sensitive. For example, eat some cheese or sour cream on Sunday, have a breakout on Tuesday. Until I was educated on the different ways food intolerance effected the body this was my constant battle. The dermatologist said is was hormonal but offered no solutions. Eliminating dairy from my diet cured the persistent acne on my cheek.
Musculoskeletal: joint pain, bone pain, chronic muscle aches. Think if you could cure your chronic pain by simply changing your diet, getting curious, and eliminating these top 7 food for 3 weeks. How much better could you feel? How many more things would you be able to do without being in constant pain? This is one of the most satisfying parts of my job as a health coach, getting people out of pain, whether physical or emotional it all starts with proper nutrition.
Immune: allergies, sinus issues. chronic infections. I’m not talking about allergic reactions as with true food allergies, but those nagging allergies. 70% of your immune system lives in your gut, I have talked about this is previous posts as it’s such a passion of mine. If you are damaging your gut by eating foods that are causing inflammation it will in turn damage the capacity of your immune system to keep you healthy. One of the most common food sensitivites I see is chronic ear infections in children and the link to dairy intolerance.
Hormonal: fatigue, trouble losing weight, infertility, pms, sleep issues. One of the major foods involved in hormonal issues is gluten. Gluten disrupts hormones in the body such as sex hormones and cortisol, causes inflammation, and contributes to insulin resistance which can lead to health issues such as PCOS, type II diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. These effects can take months or years to surface so when in doubt, cut it out.
The main message here is that food intolerance or sensitivity leads to inflammation, inflammation can lead to leaky gut syndrome, and leaky gut syndrome can effect your entire body. Many of the symptoms of leaky gut are similar to the symptoms of food sensitivity. If you eliminate the common 7 intolerant foods and still experience symptoms consult your doctor.
Here’s to your health! Leave me a comment and let me know if you struggle with any of these issues.