If you’ve incorporated more leafy greens; like kale and green smoothies into your daily routine, or have begun snacking on nuts and seeds, or have been eating more fresh fruits – that’s great! Or maybe not. You see for some people these foods don’t fit them. Many of these foods can actually drive up inflammation and cause significant health issues.
I know it’s hard to believe, but even many of these so called “healthy foods” are often a problem. Yes, even “super foods” like chia seeds, almonds, legumes, citrus fruits and even greens such as kale and spinach can actually be driving up pain and inflammation.*
If you have changed your diet and are eating many of these “healthy foods” but your symptoms are still lingering (or even getting worse) some of the foods you are eating are likely the wrong food for you.
Symptoms some of those healthy foods might not the foods that fit you
- Notice undigested food particles in your stool
- Notice your stool floats
- Experience gas and bloating after eating
- You feel nauseated more of the time no matter what you eat
- Are constipated most of the time and bowl movements are a struggle
- Feel generally fatigued even after adding many of these healthy foods
- You eat basically the same foods every day, yet feel discomfort
- Suffer from sneezing attacks; itchy eyes, nose & throat
- Break out in a flush, rash or hives after eating
- Notice a mild to moderate headache after eating
- You suffer from seasonal allergies that seem to last all year long
- You are frequently sick
- You feel fatigued most of the time
- You suffer from depression, ADD, emotional outbursts or have trouble focusing on tasks
If this looks like a lengthy list of possible symptoms of potential food sensitivities – it is! This is because each person’s body can react distinctly differently from the next persons symptoms.
Plus – did you know food sensitivities can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days to appear?
Because of this, it’s tough to know what foods might be exacerbating your symptoms.
Sorting it out can take time and involve trial and error. Most people know a few of the foods that exacerbate their symptoms but not all. In fact, it’s very common to crave foods that are actually triggering symptoms. This is because food sensitivities are a little like food addictions. We crave the food we react to because it temporarily soothes us. Because the symptom does not appear for several hours or even 24 hours, we fail to make the connection and keep on eating the reactive food and repeating the cycle.
Over time our body struggles to obtain the nutrients it needs to function optimally. Allowing this to go on long term puts our health in real danger because food reactions ultimately impact the balance of healthy flora in our microbiome and cause significant tissue damage. Our microbiome is largely responsible for protective natural immunity. So once the microbiome is unbalanced we are more likely to move from chronic illness to more serious, acute disease states.
Find the foods that fit YOU!
Food sensitivity testing can help identify those problem foods.
There are three basic testing methods to determine food reactions.
The first measures a true allergy – and immediate immune reaction. This is the skin prick test done at an allergist. Classical skin testing for allergies such as skin-scratch testing only measures IgE-mediated reactions.
A second method looks for a secondary immune response by detecting auto-antibodies in blood, urine or saliva. This is a measurement of IgG antibodies. Assessment of relative IgG antibody levels to a multitude of foods using sensitive Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) technology identifies those foods against which a person is producing antibodies. Some of these panels also measure molds, inhalants and spices.
The third type of testing is called cell mediated response testing. This is a different type of test that uses serum blood to measure inflammatory immune response mediators. This test is unique because it measures a much broader spectrum of inflammatory markers. These inflammatory markers are released from immune cells. Histamine, prostaglandins, cytokines, serotonin, dopamine, leukotrienes, interleukins and several others are some examples of specific mediators. These mediators are what trigger symptoms such as; sub clinical and clinical inflammation, tissue inflammation, smooth muscle contraction, mucus secretion, pain receptor activation, eczema and edema. In turn you get symptoms like itchy eyes, hives, constipation, diarrhea, joint pain, muscle pain, headaches, fatigue and more.
This is the type of food sensitivity testing I now use. MRT testing provides me much more data to work with than IgG testing. Because this test also measures reactions to thirty common naturally occurring and/or chemical food additives I can see where specific classifications* of foods my clients are eating are contributing to their symptoms. Using this information I am able to fine tune my clients diets for improved outcomes and better resolution of their reactive symptoms.
Customizing a therapeutic diet using MRT Testing
Once we know what specific foods, food categories and other chemicals are triggering your inflammatory response we can create a way for you to eat safely from low reactive foods as we quiet down the inflammation cascade. Then we slowly and systematically expand your safe food choices. In following this approach, we can significantly reduce symptoms because we are no longer stoking the flames of inflammation.
If uncovering the cause of your chronic health issues has been a struggle examining the foods you eat is the first step. While there are many therapeutic diets, (and I have been trained in over fifteen of them) very often one single dietary approach isn’t enough.