In today’s society, food sensitivities are becoming increasingly more common, but many people don’t even know what they are! Food sensitivities are like food allergies, but different in a few ways. Both food sensitivities and food allergies are a reaction of the immune system to something we eat. Food sensitivities are caused by an IgG reaction, whereas food allergies (like a tree nut allergy) are caused by an IgE reaction. Basically, they both stimulate the immune system, but they use different pathways to get there! The main difference between the two is that an IgG response is a delayed response and can accumulate over time, whereas an IgE response is an immediate reaction (such as anaphylaxis or hives). These IgG responses that are caused by food sensitivities can have many different symptoms that we will go over in the upcoming paragraphs.
You may have heard the term “Leaky Gut” and not thought much about it until now. Leaky gut is the term used to describe a digestive tract that has become highly inflamed due to long-term exposure to a food sensitivity. But you are probably thinking, “what makes it leaky?!” Well, the digestive tract is filled with microscopic “holes” that are used to absorb nutrients from the food that we are eating. Over time, as the digestive tract is subjected to more and more inflammation (due to food sensitivities or poor diet), these tiny holes get bigger and bigger. Once these holes get too big, larger particles of food are able to pass into your blood stream, causing your immune system to react to them. It is this reaction that leads to a variety of symptoms many people experience on a daily basis and believe to be “normal.”
Many gastrointestinal issues, such as gas, bloating, constipation, heart burn, belching and irritable bowel (diarrhea) are some of the most common symptoms associated with leaky gut and food sensitivities. These are not normal symptoms to have and show that your body is reacting to something you ate. The only way to reverse these is to completely remove the offending food and to allow the digestive tract to heal itself.
Another common symptom that many people don’t attribute to what they eat is fatigue. Many people that have food sensitivities have restless sleep and don’t feel well rested even after eight hours of sleep. Food sensitivities cause fatigue because you body is constantly trying to fight something in your system that is causing an immune response. Think about if you always had a slight cold and had to consistently fight it off. You would start to become overwhelmed and exhausted as the weeks progressed! Fatigue comes from your body’s constant immune response. If you are more prone to colds and illnesses, this may be why!
The skin is your largest organ and is also a great connection to your digestive tract, and commonly shows irritations on the surface of your skin if you have irritations to your digestive tract. Some of the most common skin conditions that are linked to your digestive tract are acne, eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea. Many times, with avoidance of the foods that you are sensitive to, you may be able to completely eliminate and treat these skin conditions.
Joint pain is another hint that your body may be sensitive to foods. This is due to the inflammatory properties that foods may be causing to your body. As mentioned earlier, your body will be in a constant state of immune response to these food particles, giving you less resources to reduce joint inflammation. People with food sensitivities tend to have more arthritis and joint pain that takes longer to completely resolve.
One common misconception with food sensitivities is that consuming a little won’t cause a reaction. This is completely untrue! For people with gluten sensitivities, contamination of just 5ppm (5 parts per million) or just one particle of flour may be enough to send your immune system into overdrive! It is absolutely necessary to remove these offending foods, and to never consume the foods you are sensitive to.
What Can I Do?
You may be asking “how on earth would you know exactly what foods are causing your food sensitivity?” The easiest answer is by simply taking a Food Sensitivity Blood Test. This type of blood test looks for those IgG particles in your blood, and see which food they are reacting to! It is highly specific and can tell you exactly which foods to avoid and which foods are safe to consume. There are many different types of food sensitivity testing but at Wisconsin Family and Sports Chiropractic, we offer the test from one of the leaders in food sensitivity testing, USBiotek, which tests a comprehensive 96 foods!
Please let us know if you or someone you know may be interested in taking the food sensitivity test, or if you have any questions. We can be reached at 262-236-9489 or firstname.lastname@example.org.