Food Intolerance Test

What is Food Intolerance?

Food intolerance is an adverse reaction to a food that occurs in the digestive system. It can be difficult to determine the difference between food intolerances and food allergies since the symptoms can look and feel very similar.
Food intolerance is far more common than food allergy and affects up to 20% of the population.

What Are Food Allergies?

Allergic reactions to food occur when the body recognizes a specific food (an allergen) as a threat and goes into overdrive by producing threat-fighting antibodies called Immunoglobulin E (IgE).
Food allergies affect about 2%-10% of the population, with most food allergies developing in early childhood. The most common food allergies are shellfish, nuts, fish, eggs, peanuts, and milk.

The Primary Difference

The biggest difference between food intolerance and food allergy is the body system in charge of the response. the digestive system is in charge of the food intolerance response whereas the immune system is responsible for the process that causes a food allergy.

What Are Food Allergies?

Allergic reactions to food occur when the body recognizes a specific food (an allergen) as a threat and goes into overdrive by producing threat-fighting antibodies called Immunoglobulin E (IgE).
Food allergies affect about 2%-10% of the population, with most food allergies developing in early childhood. The most common food allergies are shellfish, nuts, fish, eggs, peanuts, and milk.

The Primary Difference

The biggest difference between food intolerance and food allergy is the body system in charge of the response. the digestive system is in charge of the food intolerance response whereas the immune system is responsible for the process that causes a food allergy.

£45

Cost

Food Intolerance Test FAQs

How can you tell the difference between an intolerance to food and an allergy?

Food intolerance, is caused by any non-protein component of food.   It is often dose related; people with food intolerances may not have symptoms unless they eat a large portion of the food or eat the food frequently.

Lactose is a common food intolerance.  lactose is the naturally occurring sugar found in cow’s milk.  People with an intolerance to lactose cannot break down this sugar, which typically results in symptoms such as:  stomach ache, bloating, diarrhoea, gas, nausea and skin irritations.

A person with lactose intolerance may be able to drink milk in coffee or a single glass of milk, but becomes sick if he or she drinks several glasses of milk.

On the other hand, food allergies are the result of an immune response to certain foods.  When an allergic reaction to food occurs, the immune system is specifically responding to a food protein that the body recognizes as a threat.  In the case of allergies, food proteins are the small molecules that make up a particular food.  Food allergies can be triggered by even a small amount of the food and occur every time the food is consumed. People with food allergies are generally advised to avoid the offending foods completely..

Food allergies and intolerances also are different from food poisoning, which generally results from spoiled or tainted food and affects more than one person eating the food. Your health care provider can help determine if you have an allergy or intolerance, and establish a plan to help control symptoms.

What are the symptoms of food intolerance?

Nausea
Stomach pain
Gas, cramps or bloating
Vomiting
Heartburn
Diarrhea
Headaches
Irritability or nervousness
Skin challenges
Wind
Constipation

What are the symptoms of a food allergy?

Symptoms of a food allergy can range from mild to severe, and the amount of food necessary to trigger a reaction varies from person to person. Symptoms of a food allergy may include:

Rash or hives
Nausea
Cramping stomach pain
Diarrhea
Itchy skin
Shortness of breath
Chest pain
Swelling of the airways to the lungs

Anaphylaxis is a very serious and potentially fatal allergic reaction that involves a sudden drop in blood pressure, loss of consciousness and body system failure.

What causes food allergies and intolerances?

Food allergies arise from sensitivity to chemical compounds (proteins) in food, even compounds that are found naturally in food. Food allergies are more common in people whose family members have allergies, suggesting a genetic — or hereditary — factor may be involved with the development of food allergies.

Food allergies develop after you are exposed to a food protein that your body thinks is harmful. The first time you eat the food containing the protein, your immune system responds by creating specific disease-fighting antibodies (called immunoglobulin E or IgE). When you eat the food again, it triggers the release of IgE antibodies and other chemicals, including histamine, in an effort to expel the protein “invader” from your body. Histamine is a powerful chemical that can affect the respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, skin or cardiovascular system.

The allergy symptoms you have depend on where in the body the histamine is released. If it is released in the ears, nose and throat, you may have an itchy nose and mouth, or trouble breathing or swallowing. If histamine is released in the skin, you may develop hives or a rash. If histamine is released in the gastrointestinal tract, you likely will develop stomach pains, cramps or diarrhea. Many people experience a combination of symptoms as the food is eaten and digested.

There are many factors that may contribute to food intolerance. In some cases — as with lactose intolerance — the person lacks the chemicals, called enzymes, necessary to properly digest certain proteins found in food. Also common are intolerances to some chemical ingredients added to food to provide color, enhance taste and protect against the growth of bacteria. These ingredients include various dyes and monosodium glutamate (MSG), a flavor enhancer.

Substances called sulfites, which may occur naturally — as in red wines — or may be added to prevent the growth of mold, also are a source of intolerance for some people. The Food and Drug Administration has banned the use of spray-on sulfates to preserve fruits and vegetables, but sulfates are still found naturally in some foods. Salicylates are a group of plant chemicals found naturally in many fruits, vegetables, nuts, coffee, juices, beer and wine. Aspirin also is a compound of the salicylate family. Foods containing salicylates may trigger symptoms in people who are sensitive to aspirin. Of course, any food consumed in excessive quantities can cause digestive symptoms.

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