Food sensitivity, or food intolerance, is becoming increasingly prevalent in the Australian population. Chances are you have heard someone mention they are ‘dairy intolerant‘, ‘gluten or wheat intolerant’ or have other food sensitivities or allergies.
However, many people are unaware that they are sensitive or allergic to one or more foods because their reactions are masked by other symptoms, or take some time to appear, or get lost in the crowd of other symptoms.
Do I Have a Food Sensitivity?
Food sensitivities can be hard to recognize at first because the symptoms can vary so greatly from one individual to the next. Many people live with minor or major symptoms of food sensitivities for years without ever really knowing what the cause is.
There is a long list of symptoms that can relate to food sensitivities and intolerance. Do you experience any of these?
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Flatulence and burping
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Reflux and indigestion
- Abdominal pain
- Fluid retention
- Migraine and headaches
- Asthma and shortness of breath
- Fatigue and exhaustion
- Difficulty concentrating
- Skin problems – eczema, psoriasis, acne and blemishes
- Nasal congestion or hay fever
- Mood swings and irritability
- Memory loss
- Weight gain
- Auto-immune disease (Crohn’s, Hashimoto, Lupus, MS)
- Behavioral problems in children, and ADHD
How Do Food Allergies Develop?
Food allergies generally develop due to poor lifestyle habits, resulting in reduced functioning of the digestive enzymes responsible for breaking down food. This can lead to a common condition called Leaky Gut Syndrome, when gaps form in the vital gastrointestinal barrier.
These gaps allow toxins, microbes, undigested food, waste and other tiny molecules to ‘leak’ out through the gut wall and into the blood stream. When this happens the body can exert an immune reaction to foods – resulting in a broad range of ‘allergic’ symptoms.
How do I Test For Food Sensitivities?
At Vital Chi our naturopaths can test for the most common food allergies, such as cows’ milk, eggs, beans, nuts and cereals. We can also expand the test to cover more than 110 different foods, chemicals, artificial colorings, flavorings and preservatives.
There are many methods of testing for food allergies. At Vital Chi we choose the most reliable method called the IgG Food Sensitivity Profile.
Food sensitivity tests are very simple, and our naturopaths offer a holistic approach to treating any intolerances.
- A small sample of blood is taken and sent to a laboratory where it is tested against various foods.
- Once the results are received your naturopath will advise you of the foods you are intolerant to, and suggest removal of these foods from your diet for a period of time. After removing these foods, many patients find a huge improvement in their health and vitality, along with a significant reduction or complete disappearance of symptoms.
- The next step is to rebuild, strengthen and repair the gastrointestinal system. Your naturopath will recommend specific nutrients and herbs that heal the gut wall, decreasing inflammation and correcting the body’s response to the food insensitivity.
After a period of time some patients are eventually able to reintroduce and tolerate the foods that once caused so much havoc in the body.
Besides suffering from symptoms today, food sensitivities that are left untreated can put you at risk of developing further, more complicated health problems. Let Vital Chi’s experienced naturopaths help you find and fix your food sensitivity now.
Our naturopaths take a holistic approach that covers not just your diet, but also many lifestyle factors that can affect your health. They can help you find practical, effective ways to feel better naturally, without resorting to pharmaceutical drugs.