Food Intolerances and Allergies
Food intolerances or hypersensitivities and food allergy are adverse reactions to food of which is estimated to affect one fifth of the population. Food allergies is an adverse immune response that occurs on exposure to a specific food with most severe food allergies IgE immune mediated. Upon exposure symptoms can occur within minutes to hours may include, swelling of the tongue, difficulty breathing, vomiting, diarrhea, hives, rash, anaphylaxis.
The top eight common food allergens involved in an IgE immune response include: cow's milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soybeans.
Food intolerances and hypersensitivities are adverse reactions to food however can be much more insidious and have a delayed reaction of up to 72 hours. Some food intolerances can be explained by physiological processes such as lactose and fructose intolerance however other food hyper sensitivities can involve an IgG immune response and can be assessed via IgG food intolerance testing.
Signs and symptoms that may be associated with food intolerance or food hypersensitivity include:
Bloating and Pain
Investigation into genetic susceptibility, gastrointestinal health, dietary and lifestyle factors in conjunction with identified food intolerances, assist in developing an individualised elimination diet. A structured re-challenge schedule for the re-introduction of foods may also be implemented as some foods may be tolerated in less frequency and in amounts. Treatment priorities are focused upon identifying and removing food trigger, repairing gastrointestinal barrier function, reducing associated inflammation and improving gastrointestinal health. Evidence based functional nutritional and herbal medicine and probiotic and prebiotic treatment is used in clinical therapy.