When you think of a food allergy the sight of someone’s eyes bulging because their throat is swelling shut probably comes to mind right? This type of food allergy is actually much less common than you think. The real danger lies in the food allergy that you don’t know you have. Someone may have a very slight allergy to a food and it will not show any serious symptoms, but more small ones that you don’t really notice such as a stomach ache, rash, bloating, or weight gain. All of these symptoms don’t really bring to mind the thought of a food allergy but what if you are eating this food all the time? What kind of damage can that do to you?
As many as 30% of the country’s population may have a gluten intolerance but they don’t realize it. Gluten is a sticky protein that is found in foods such as breads and pastas. Some people with a severe case of gluten intolerance have Celiac’s disease which ends up attacking the intestine. When you ingest something like gluten that you have an allergy or intolerance too your gut becomes inflamed. This allows bacteria and the food that you are allergic to to get into your bloodstream. When this happens your immune system attacks. This happens again and again, every time you sit down to a meal of your favorite foods that you just happen to be allergic to.
There are three different ways that you can find out if you have a food allergy:
1. Go gluten and dairy free for 6 weeks and see if it makes a difference. If you notice symptoms that you used to have disappearing it’s a good bet you are allergic to one of those.
2. Get blood work done at the doctor’s office. The tests have limitations but they are a good starting point to figuring out what your body doesn’t like.
3. Avoid top food allergens that you may eat regularly to see if there is a difference. Cut out eggs, nuts, gluten, and dairy products. Do this for 6 weeks and then slowly introduce some foods back in to pinpoint when your symptoms start again.
If you are overweight, this could be one of your biggest reasons why. Isn’t it worth it to check and see if you have an intolerance or allergy?