Due to many recent questions regarding food allergies and how they affect our health, I was inspired to write this post.

What is a food allergy?
A food allergy is a reaction to the food that you eat. Most of us know someone who has a severe food allergy, typically to peanuts or shell fish. This immediate reaction is due to an IgE antibody response in the body. Most people who have a strong IgE antibody response are aware of their food allergy. But the hidden food allergies are the much more common IgG response.
The IgG response is a delyaed-hypersensativity reaction. This means that the symptoms can take minutes, hours, or days to appear, making it difficult to link the response and symptoms back to the instigating allergy. Allergies end up having profound effects with how our body functions as a whole. Sometimes it is the common foods that we crave and eat all of the time that are creating this toxic reaction within the body.
What symptoms are associated with a food allergy?
The IgG response can create its own symptom, or it can have a cumulative effect with other aspects of your health. In this sense, the body can be viewed as a glass. The glass can hold so many allergies or determinants of health before it tips over and you see the symptoms. Becasue of this cumulative effect, isolating the food allergy without testing can be difficult.
The IgG response can create and play a large part within a multitude of symptoms.These symptoms include but are not limited to:
* depression
* anxiety and nervousness
* aggression
* hyperactivity
* restlnessness
* confusion
* poor memory
* headaches
* dry skin
* skin rashes
* acne
* hair loss
* itching
* mood changes
* hot flashes
* fatigue
* poor sleep
* bloating
* constipation
* diarrhea
* muscle and joint aches
* arthritis
* stiffness
* blurred vision
* ringing in the ears
* ear congestion
* ear infections
* difficulty breathing
* asthma
* chest congestion
* sinus congestion
* dizziness, light-headedness
* dark circles under the eyes
* itchy and watery eyes
* canker sores
* chronic coughing
* phelgm
* chest pain
* rapid heart beat
* weight
* binge eating
* water retention
* cravings
* underweight
How do I approach addressing food allergies?
When you look into food allergy testing, you want to find a lab that tests ELISA IgG antibodies of common food allergens. This is the most accurate food allergy test and it is tested through your blood. Once you get your results back, your naturpoathic doctor will help you remove the allergens from your diet. Once you have been free of the allergens in your diet, usually between 2-3 months, you can begin a re-introduction phase where you test individual food allergens. Somtimes, your body doesn’t react anymore to the food allergies and you can bring them back into your diet. Your naturopathic doctor will help you through this process of eliminating the allergens, healing your gastrointestinal system, addressing any dysfunction that was created by the allergies, and help you re-introduce and test the allergens.
While this process is a committment, it is a committment to your health. Becasue identifying and removing food allergies removes barriers to your health, you move your body one more step forward in optimizing your health and vitality. Preventative medicine begins with food.
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