Some of the most common health problems are diet-related. Just as food can serve as medicine, it can also cause your health to decline. Rather than feeding disease, isn’t it more advantageous to eat to encourage a healthy immune system, gut microbiome, and well-functioning organs?
A high percentage of people live with undiagnosed food sensitivities. It’s actually estimated that about 20% of the world’s population is sensitive to certain foods. You may not even suspect that your body is sensitive to certain foods because they have become commonplace in your diet. You may be thinking that you need to cut junk food or sugar, and while these foods are not healthy, they may not be causing your symptoms.
Common Food Intolerance Symptoms
- Brain fog
- Inflammation (in muscles and joints)
- Digestive troubles
- Runny nose
- Flushing of skin
Difference Between Food Allergies And Sensitivities
While food allergies involve the immune system and result in an immediate response like a swelling or hives, food sensitivities will have a more delayed reaction. When a person, who is sensitive to dairy products, consumes milk, for example, he or she may experience poor digestion, migraines, or some sort of inflammation. Food sensitivities are harder to diagnose because of the delayed immune response, meaning that you could eat an assortment of foods and not know which food caused the symptom.
To help you discover whether or not you are sensitive to certain foods, we are going to detail the most common food sensitivities below.
A lot of people are lactose intolerant, while others are sensitive to casein, a protein in dairy products. In addition to lactose and casein, the hormones, synthetic vitamins, and antibiotics in cows, in addition to the corn diet and unhealthy living conditions, also cause indigestion, bloating, and gas. A healthier option is a fermented dairy product like grass-fed kefir, which doesn’t really affect people who are sensitive to casein.
The severity of a nightshade sensitivity will determine the reaction a person has after consuming nightshades. This plant group consists of peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, goji berries, potatoes, and certain spices that contain alkaloids. Nightshade sensitivity commonly causes inflammatory responses.
While this is a sensitivity that people wish they never knew about, caffeine sensitivity is a real thing. The average adult can safely consume up to 400mg of caffeine a day without experiencing side effects, but some people, however, are hypersensitive to the slightest amount of caffeine because they tend to have difficulty metabolizing it. People who are hypersensitive to caffeine can experience insomnia, jitters, restlessness, anxiety, and nervousness after consuming the slightest amount.
Legumes have played an integral role in many people’s diets, but everyone cannot properly digest the lectins and phytate proteins in legumes. Let us not forget that peanuts are also legumes, which is why many people struggle to digest them. Out of all the legumes, soy and peanuts typically cause the most gastrointestinal stress.
Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols, referred to as FODMAPS or fermentable sugars, are not fully digested in the gut. Because of this, they begin to ferment, releasing hydrogen that can cause distention to the intestines, which can lead to IBS, gas, constipation, or diarrhea. FODMAP foods are often healthy, but remember that everyone reacts to foods differently, even natural foods. If you have a FODMAP sensitivity, you may need to avoid certain nuts, grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy products, and grains.
Found in certain foods like aged cheeses and grapes, sulfites are chemicals that are typically used to preserve drinks, some medications, and foods. They are commonly found in dried fruit to prevent browning and in wine to prevent spoiling. People with sulfite sensitivity usually have asthma, but people who don’t have asthma can also be sensitive to sulfites. Common signs of sulfite sensitivity include hives, wheezing, flushing, diarrhea, or stuffy nose.
Nuts & Seeds
The lectins, phytates, and roughage of nuts can cause digestive irritation. Most nuts that people purchase are commonly coated in inflammatory oils, like soybean or canola, or hydrogenated trans fats that can cause digestive problems as well. If you have a nut sensitivity, you may want to consider purchasing raw nuts because they are void of seasonings, oils, and added flavors. Sometimes people are sensitive to salicylates, which are naturally produced by plants for protection against insects. When people ingest them, however, they can have adverse reactions.