According to Allergy UK an estimated 45% of the UK adult population have food intolerances and a further 2% suffer an allergy.
Symptoms of food intolerance can vary from mild bloating and wind to severe migraines, low mood, fatigue, diarrhoea, constipation, and skin rashes, with the effects often not being visible until 2or 3 days after a problem food has been eaten.
Diagnosis of food intolerance can be tricky especially if a reaction to the food doesn’t occur immediately. Keeping a ‘Food, Mood & Movement Tracker’ for a month can help as it may be possible to notice links between what has been eaten and any symptoms that later occur. Observing lifestyle factors such as stress and sleep patterns is also important. For women, symptoms may be influenced by the menstrual cycle.
Food intolerances can be caused by different factors, including;
– Inadequate digestion: forexample low levels of lactase, the enzyme that digests the milk sugar lactose, can cause lactose intolerance
– Excess histamine: chronic stress and poor digestion can impair histamine breakdown. Eating foods high in histamine can then cause problems.
– Reactions to pesticides in foods
– Reactions to naturally occuring compounds like alkaloids in the Deadly Nightshade family
– An imbalanced response by your immune system
In my practice I use a simple pin-prick ELISA blood test to help identify whether your immune systme is producing too many antibodies to certain foods, which may then be aggravating your symptoms. There are a range of tests available, from the basic Food Detective Test that looks at reactions to the top 59 reactive foods and gives results within an hour, to the more in-depth FoodPrint tests which are laboratory analysed.
To find out more information on food intolerances or ELISA testing, call or email me today on;
T: 07910 705272