Food allergies and intolerances are becoming more and more common.(1) Most people have what is known as an intolerance, and this is a totally different ball game to a real allergy, which can occasionally be life-threatening and in worst cases, fatal.
The problem with a food allergy is that until it is diagnosed and the actual trigger is identified, then you’re walking a fine line, because until you know what causes the problem, you can’t avoid it. This is where treatment is required in order to identify the problem which causes the allergy and symptoms.
Here at NeuroBalance Chiropractic we are highly experienced in assessing individuals who suspect they may have a food intolerance, as well as identifying whether the person has a true allergy or an intolerance. Sydney chiropractor Dr Rachael Veronesi has been treating people with food intolerances for years, and recognises the difficulties and sometimes distressing nature of the problem. You can be assured that you are in safe hands, and that an identification and treatment plan will be put in place promptly, allowing you to live your life without the worry of a future allergic or intolerant attack.
So, what is the difference between a food allergy and an intolerance?
Basically, a food allergy is a reaction caused by the immune system when the person eats a particular food. The symptoms can come on immediately or up to an hour after consumption, however depending on the severity of the allergy, depends on the severity of the reaction; we mentioned that in some cases this can be fatal. The symptoms of an allergy are typically itching in the mouth, hives, difficulties with breathing and swallowing, stomach pain, swelling, and stomach upset.
On the other hand, a food intolerance isn’t as severe. An intolerance to a food is when the body has difficulty digesting it, which causes gastrointestinal symptoms, such as boating, vomiting, and diarrhoea. The symptoms then settle.
Despite all this, it’s important to understand what is causing the intolerance, because symptoms can be distressing and upsetting on a life-long basis for the person involved. Gluten, dairy, lactose, these are all common intolerances, but generally we are all individuals, so anyone can have an intolerance towards anything, the mystery is finding out what the item is.
Common food allergies on the other hand are obviously peanuts, shellfish, milk, and eggs, however a person can also be allergic to anything. Treatment will begin by taking a thorough history, keeping a food diary, avoiding certain foods to single out which is the problem, and then hopefully this identifies it. The same line works with intolerances, as it’s a trial and error kind of deal in order to find out the cause. The elimination diet will usually be for a period of time, dependent on the person, whilst some gut healing work is done via supplements, after that a re-introduction trial may be done.
If more detailed testing is required the chiropractors, Dr Veronesi or Dr Rungie may request a food allergy profile known as the Food Detective from Cambridge Nutritional Sciences Ltd. This tests for a thing called an IgG reaction to a number of common foods.
If you are worried about potential food allergies, don’t hesitate to call the practice now on 02 9938 5456 to discuss your concerns and look forward to a life free of worrying allergic and intolerant reactions.