Food Intolerance? Food Allergy? What Is the Difference?

I have many clients who come to see me with various stomach discomforts. Some of the common ones are queasy, stomach ache, acid reflux or heartburn. Clients ask me what causes these discomforts and what can they do to help alleviate symptoms. Many discomforts can be avoided if you know what your triggers are. In this post I am focusing on what is food intolerance and what is food allergy? What is the difference?

Your stomach was built to be your lifelong friend; unfortunately this isn’t always the case. There are many situations that can cause stomach distress. In many cases, people have food lofet intolerance or food allergies that they are unaware of. You are probably scratching your head asking yourself what is the difference?

Food intolerance is different from food allergy. Food intolerance is when you have problems with digesting certain foods such as dairy products, gluten or grains contain gluten, beans, and cabbage because they can cause gas buildup. The food usually sits in your stomach trying to digest longer than normal. Food intolerance is more common than food allergies.

This is the biggie! This is when the body’s response to allergens in food (such as eggs, tree nuts, milk, shellfish, strawberries and tomatoes) cause the immune system to have an allergic reaction, raising the level of histamine in the blood. The proteins in the food cannot be broken down during the cooking process, or by the acid in the stomach or intestinal digestive enzymes. The allergens enter into the gastrointestinal lining, then the bloodstream and cause allergic reactions throughout the body and attack the immune system. For some people, these foods can cause them to go into anaphylactic shock. About 3% of adults and 6-8% of children have clinically proven allergic reactions. Children may grow out of their food allergies, but adults do not. Most food allergies are genetic and usually both parents have food allergies.

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