By Dr. Sierra Storm, ND
Food allergies occur when our immune system mistakes a piece of food for a substance that could cause our body harm. When we ingest a food that we have become allergic to, our immune system recognizes it not as nourishment, but rather as a foreign invader.
Much like the immune system would do when exposed to a bacteria or a virus, it sends out an alert in the form inflammatory chemicals. This lets the surrounding tissues know that they should be on the ready for an attack. It also designs an antibody specifically for that type of food, which will launch a speedier and more efficient defense the next time that food is encountered.
Great for battling disease. Not so great for eating food you think is otherwise safe and healthy.
When Antibodies Go Bad
Antibodies can be very helpful. The production of antibodies is the reason that people get immunized for the flu. If your body has already had a little taste of something that could cause you harm, it is set up to be on the ready when the real thing comes by. Like training drills, the immune system can then respond more quickly and efficiently the next time so that you don’t get as sick.
Antibody production is one of many essential strategies our immune system has developed that allows us to coexist with bacteria, viruses, fungus and parasites, to name a few. However, when antibodies are produced to the foods we’re eating everyday, our body quickly becomes a battleground and can get damaged in the process.
The antibodies that are secreted in response to a food sensitivity or intolerance are called IgG antibodies. Instead of causing a huge, visible inflammatory reaction, they cause a low level of inflammation in our internal tissues. Food intolerances are an insidious cause of ill-health. They won’t cause your throat to swell up and close, but the constant low level inflammation they cause in your system lays the groundwork for very serious future health conditions.
In today’s world of chronic illnesses, paying attention to our food allergies may be one of the most beneficial health changes we can possibly make to protect our health and quality of life. Chronic illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer have at their root the same kind of chronic, low levels of inflammation that food intolerances cause in the body.
Clearing the Way for Good Health After Allergies
You can imagine a food sensitivity to be like carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s hard to detect, and it causes a variety of confusing symptoms. These symptoms accumulate over time and can cause serious, debilitating harm to our bodies and our quality of life. It is essential to detect the sources of harm and eliminate them from your diet. That way we can clear up any current symptoms you are experiencing (fatigue, joint pain, mood swings, gas and bloating, headaches, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, insomnia, weight gain).
And we can prevent the downward spiral into more serious trouble – such as obesity, heart disease, autoimmune conditions, poly cystic ovarian syndrome, Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s disease, and hypothyroidism.
If you know your food allergies, we strongly recommend that you eliminate them from your diet. If you don’t and need help figuring them out, we can run a simple blood test in office that will show you exactly which foods you are reacting to!
For an appointment, call us at 206.535.7527