Specific food sensitivities can cause gastrointestinal disorders, but they are also linked to such symptoms as aching joints, migraines, fatigue, and an overactive immune system.
If you have any of these symptoms, a simple food sensitivity test may be able to provide some answers. To figure out what foods might be causing your symptoms, some people try elimination diets, where you stop eating certain foods and then start again to see if that food is causing your symptoms, but these take a considerable amount of time.
A food sensitivity test can help you pinpoint what foods are triggering your symptoms much more quickly so you can experience relief sooner.
Antibodies cause food sensitivities in the immune system called Immunoglobin G (IgG) and Immunoglobulin A (IgA). These antibodies travel throughout our bloodstream and can cause various symptoms. Unlike the antibodies that cause food allergies, where reactions are immediate, symptoms of IgG and IgA antibodies occur more slowly. They will not be noticed until hours or several days after consuming particular foods.
Gluten sensitivity is one of the most common types amongst people today. But it is important to remember that gluten sensitivity is NOT a celiac disease, the autoimmune condition caused by consuming gluten.
How Can I Find Out if I Have Food Sensitivities?
IgG Antibody Testing
An in-office fingerstick can measure your body’s reaction to 96+ different foods. The test and the results need to be conducted and evaluated by a licensed health care professional. This will ensure you get all the necessary physical exams and have your condition diagnosed and treated.
Removing “The Big 8” From Your Diet
The top 8 food allergens are dairy, eggs, wheat (gluten), shellfish, soy, peanuts, fish, and tree nuts. Altogether remove these foods from your diet for six weeks. After which, you should begin eating each again one at a time, with three days in between each new food. It would help to write down any symptoms you experienced with each food item.
The FOOD Test
A good food sensitivity test examines your white blood cells for immunoglobulin reactions to foods and other substances. The lab will often provide you with a color-coded form, making the test results easy to understand, and depending on the lab, tests include measuring reactions to:
● 100-250 different foods
● functional foods and medicinal herbs
● food additives, colorings, and preservatives
● antibiotics and anti-inflammatory agents
● molds and misc
Food testing measures cellular reactions, assessing the body’s sensitivity to food and environmental substances. These can cause both acute and chronic conditions. People with unknown food sensitivities can significantly benefit when they know the adverse effects of certain foods.
Hormones and Food Sensitivity
Cortisol is our body’s stress hormone. When we're stressed out, cortisol levels rise and suppress an immune antibody called Secretory Immunoglobulin A (sIgA). This antibody makes sure we have a healthy intestinal lining.
Without slgA, you can develop “leaky gut syndrome,” in which larger proteins enter the bloodstream. In response to these larger proteins, our immune system becomes overactive, resulting in symptoms like headache, joint pain, anxiety, and irritability.
The adrenal glands can produce enough cortisol to maintain healthy normal levels when under average stress. But the problem occurs when we are under prolonged pressure.
Producing too much cortisol for an extended time is strenuous on the adrenal glands, so cortisol levels drop. When levels are low, or demand for cortisol is high, adverse symptoms will appear. Cortisol imbalances can cause symptoms like:
● Sleep disorders
● Frequent infections
● Increased pain and inflammation
● Abdominal weight gain
● Sugar cravings
● Food sensitivities
In addition, high levels of caffeine and carbohydrates can cause fluctuating levels of cortisol which likely contribute to the development of food sensitivities.
Hypothyroidism, where individuals have low levels of certain thyroid hormones, can also cause people to have a weak intestinal wall and develop food sensitivities. When thyroid levels are returned to optimal levels (precisely that of the T3 thyroid), food sensitivities will often disappear altogether.
Estrogen and Histamine
People can develop histamine intolerance when too little of their body’s histamine is not being metabolized. Symptoms of this condition include headaches, fatigue, itching, anxiety, and irregular menstrual cycles.
Estrogen also influences the production of histamine. And if a woman finds they have too much estrogen they will likely experience histamine intolerance and experience headaches during ovulation and/or right before menstruation. Foods that are high in histamine include alcohol, eggplant, spinach, tomatoes, and canned fish.
If you’re experiencing symptoms you believe are related to certain food sensitivities, then let’s talk.