What is the difference between food sensitivities and food allergies?
Sometimes you’ve been told, or you believed you had a food allergy because you ate something and had a stomachache, or you got a rash, or your throat got scratchy. You probably did or do have an allergy to that specific food. Allergies though, are controlled by a certain aspect of our immune system; food hypersensitivities are not that component of our immune system.
How are food sensitivities different than food allergies?
Generally for food hypersensitivities, the symptoms, if there are any that you can detect, are delayed and many times remote from the gastrointestinal tract where you would think you would have symptoms since you ate something. It can be headaches or they can be very general symptoms such as ongoing fatigue and lethargy. They can also be symptoms that are related to different immunological problems and inflammatory problems such as arthritis.
How do you test for food sensitivities?
Testing for food hypersensitivities is also different than testing for food allergies. Food allergies are generally done by your primary care doctor if they’re suspecting those. Food sensitivity tests are different. Specialized laboratory tests will have us look at the components of the immune system that can be reacting to certain foods, specifically certain peptides or proteins in the foods that may be driving different disease and processes.
Here at Natural Medicine & Rehabilitation, we will do this type of testing for food sensitivities. Our functional medicine physician will do a clinical evaluation and determine what is necessary and where we can target that testing to best suit your needs. This powerful diagnostic tool which helps our physician establish baselines, identify the cause of a disease or disorder you may have, and more importantly it can help you learn how to prevent diseases from occurring.