Patients tend to think a Food Sensitivity Test and Food Allergy Test are the same thing… with the increasing knowledge in physical symptoms people experience from different foods, many people would like to better understand the true cause, but do not clearly understand the true differences between a food allergy and a food sensitivity.
Let’s take a quick look at what’s actually being tested when a patient has a food allergy and or a food sensitivity. IgA, IgG, and IgE are antibodies within our immune system that are produced in response to foreign invaders such as parasites, bacteria, and viruses, but can also respond to overexposure of certain foods we are sensitive to.
WHAT’S A FOOD ALLERGY?
A food allergy is an Immediate reaction to food that is IgE-mediated, which can result in hives, throat swelling and even anaphylaxis (i.e., severe allergic reaction causing airway closure, low blood pressure, and even shock). The most common anaphylactic reactions occur due to certain foods, medications and insect stings.
SO THEN WHAT’S A FOOD SENSITIVITY?
A food sensitivity on the other hand is typically more of a delayed reaction and relates to both IgA and IgG-mediated reactions.
IgA antibodies are specific to the mucous membranes, stomach, and intestinal linings. When the gut becomes inflamed or disrupted by excessive IgA food exposure, it becomes leaky, which can result in the inability to absorb vital nutrients and vitamins; disrupt good bacteria; and allows other food antigens to travel throughout the body.
IgG antibodies tend to have more of a delayed systemic effect. By delayed, let’s say you are extremely sensitive to dairy, your symptoms may not appear for 48-72 hours later. So for example, you had milk in your coffee 3 days ago. This morning you wake up have a slice of dry toast and black coffee, then develop a migraine later that morning. Most people would think, it has to be the gluten I ate. But let’s say the you only have sensitivities to dairy and not gluten, most people would stop eating gluten and continue consuming dairy products, when it should be in the reverse manner! This is why just attempting to eliminate foods based upon when symptoms arise can become very confusing!
WHAT KIND OF SYMPTOMS ARE SEEN WITH FOOD SENSITIVITIES?
- Muscular/Joint Pains
- Weight Gain
- Skin Rashes
- Concentration Issues
If you feel you suffer from any of the above symptoms, I definitely suggest getting tested and not attempt to guess where sensitivities are. It’s best to know now, so you can intervene and start feeling better and optimizing your health now! Call to schedule your consultation: 346-703-2075