It seems like everyone is talking about food ‘sensitivities’ and ‘intolerances’ lately. Let’s get a few facts straight to better understand this often-misunderstood topic.
Food sensitivity is NOT a food allergy
No, they are not the same thing. Instead of boring you with the immunology lesson, I will say that, in short, an allergy is an immediate reaction, while a food sensitivity is delayed. This means you could ‘react’ to a sensitive food up to 2 days after eating it (which is why testing for problem foods makes it a lot easier).
Food sensitivities are ruining your gut health
Even though foods that we are slightly intolerant to can be eaten from time-to-time, they are causing inflammation in the digestive system when they are consumed (think of it as a ‘mini fire’ in your intestines that’s damaging the delicate cells of the digestive tract). Yikes! For some people, this leads to bloating, cramping or diarrhea, while for others, they simply feel lethargic and heavy.
Don’t guess, test
Curious to know which foods are preventing you from achieving optimal health? There are two ways. First, you can eliminate most foods from your diet (keep in most fruits, veggies and one starch like rice). Then add in one new food (eaten twice that day) and wait for 3 days. If you don’t have a flare up of symptoms, most likely that food is safe to add back into your diet. As you can imagine, the process of reintroducing 1 new food back into your diet every 3 days can take a while to get a full picture of which foods are problematic. The second option is a an IGG or Food Sensitivity Test. Often done with a finger prick, you can test over 200 foods and get a reading of how sensitive you are to each of them. This cuts out the guesswork and gives you a starting place to work from.
Food sensitivities forever?
The good news is, once you know which foods are a problem, keeping them out for a period of 1-2 months while healing the gut can be life changing. Many of my patients can safely tolerate most of their ‘problem’ foods after we complete a digestive protocol to strengthen their digestive system.
Want to get started on the road to better gut health? Try eliminating the Top 5 Food Sensitivities from your diet for a few weeks. Better yet, see your naturopathic doctor and get the IGG test done for yourself!