According to James Breneman, MD, former Chairman of the Food Allergy Committee of the American College of Allergy, about 60% of all undiagnosed symptoms are due to food allergies. There are two types of food allergies: Immediate and delayed.
Immediate Food Allergy (IgE)
TYPE ONE toxic reaction (reactions) are obvious. You know when you have one because your body suffers a notable and almost instant reaction (may cause fatal anaphylactic reactions).
- Allergic symptoms commonly appear 2 hours or less after consumption of offending foods.
- Small, even trace amounts of food can trigger an intense allergic reaction, including anaphylaxis in which a fatal reaction can occur within minutes.
- Only 1 or 2 foods (rarely more) involved in causing allergic symptoms.
- Primarily affects the skin, airway and digestive tract manifesting in such “classical” allergies as asthma, rhinitis, itchiness, swelling of face an/or throat, eczema, vomiting, diarrhea and anaphylaxis.
- Common in children, rare in adults.
- Addictive cravings, withdrawal symptoms rare to nonexistent.
- Allergic food is food that is rarely eaten.
- Commonly a permanent, fixed food allergy.
- Frequently IgE “RAST” positive and skin test positive.
- Although mixed immediate/delayed onset allergic reactions have been reported (e.g., eczema), IgG antibody not characteristically involved.
- Mast cells, basophils, histamine and tryptase release commonly involved.
Delayed Food Allergy (IgG) Or Food Sensitivity Test
TYPE TWO reactions are not immediate, making them almost impossible to detect without sophisticated testing.
- Allergic symptoms commonly appear 2 to 24 hours or longer after eating offending foods.
- Allergic symptoms triggered by larger amounts of food, often in multiple feeding.
- 3 to 10 food allergens may be clinically involved (over 20 foods reported in some cases).
- Virtually any tissue, organ, or system of the human body can be affected.
- Very common in children and adults.
- Addictive cravings and withdrawal symptoms present in 20 to 30% of patients.
- Offending foods are rarely self-diagnosed due to multiple foods and delayed onset of symptoms.
- Allergic foods are commonly favorite foods, frequently eaten, and eaten in larger amounts.
- Allergy to foods is commonly reversible.
- Skin test negative, IgE “RAST” negative. This is a non-IgE antibody-mediated allergic reaction to foods.
- IgG ELISA (Type II) positive; IgG food immune complex (Type III) and/or cellular (Type IV) reactions may be involved as well. These delayed type non-IgE type reactions are also called food intolerance or food hypersensitivity reactions. However, allergies to wheat and gluten should not be confused with Celiac Disease or gluten intolerance.
- Sensitized lymphocytes, eosinophils, platelets, and release of leukotrienes.
- Symptoms related to food allergies include: nasal and sinus congestion, chronic cough, muscle and joint pain, fatigue, chronic ear infection, gas, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation.
Celiac Disease vs. Sensitivity to Wheat and Gluten?
Celiac disease also known as gluten intolerance is not a food allergy. It is an autoimmune, genetic digestive disorder that affects at least 1 in 133 Americans. In people with celiac disease, gluten found in wheat, rye and barely sets off an autoimmune reaction that causes the destruction of the villi in the small intestine.
Although the symptoms of celiac disease are similar to those of wheat and gluten sensitivity, people with celiac disease must avoid gluten containing products at all times in order to prevent destruction of their intestinal tract mucosa. In contrast, wheat and/or gluten sensitivities do not cause destruction of the gastrointestinal lining and the gluten containing grains may be tolerated again after avoidance period of 3-6 months.
At Ocean Pacific Integrative Health Center, we celebrate every person’s uniqueness by providing personalized Health Plans that includes:
- Diet and lifestyle analysis and support
- Nutritional Analysis and Support
- Botanical/Herbal Medicines
Our Personalized Health Plan includes:
- Comprehensive Health Intake by a Licensed Naturopathic Doctor
- Physical Exam
- Lab Evaluation (IgE and/or IgG blood test)
- Blood Testing
- Continual monitoring and evaluation of symptoms