Food allergies were a rarity just 40 or 50 years ago, but today an estimated one out of every 13 children has a food allergy – and the evidence is increasing.

Food allergies can be difficult to detect – young children who are unable to communicate their symptoms, unexplained crying, diarrhoea or rash can be common signs.

There are likely genetic and environmental factors triggering the rise in food allergies, genetic modification, food additives, and abnormal gut flora are some potential culprits.

Many people think that food allergies cause a bit of stomach upset or a skin rash, not realizing that for a growing number of the population food allergies can be deadly.

Most common allergies

Often the allergy is to a very commonly eaten food. The following eight foods account for 90 per cent of all food allergic reactions, though sesame seeds and legumes are becoming more frequent allergens as well:
  • Peanuts
  • Tree nuts
  • Fish
  • Shell fish
  • Soy
  • Wheat
  • Milk
  • Eggs

Sometimes a food allergy occurs the first time a new food is eaten. Other times you can develop an allergy literally overnight to a food you’ve eaten your entire life. When you are allergic to a substance, your immune system mistakenly believes it is dangerous and produces immunoglobin E (IgE) antibodies in an attempt to neutralize it.
Chemicals such as histamine released into your bloodstream during this process can lead to a battery of symptoms any time you eat the food (although symptoms may not appear until hours later).

These include

  • Tingling or itching in your mouth – hives – itching
  • Eczema – swelling anywhere in your body, especially your lips, face tongue
  • and throat, wheezing and trouble breathing
  • Abdominal pain – diarrhoea – nausea + vomiting
  • Fainting + dizziness – anaphylaxis – nasal congestion

Making matters worse, food allergies can actually result in all sorts of reactions, from headaches to sneezing to rashes to swollen joints. Or they may result in psoriasis, or cause eczema to flare up.

Treatment

I highly recommend Kinesiology sessions in my clinic for allergy testing and treatment, combined with Auricular (ear) Acupuncture.