Naturopathic Care for Food Allergies / Intolerances
Dr. Arianna Anderson
Anderson Family Chiropractic & Naturopathic Care
“Let food be your medicine, and medicine be your food” - Hippocrates
When an allergy was scientifically defined in 1925, the definition did not include food allergies. This was for a couple reasons - most food allergic reactions are not quick and the treatment for them is not easily defined. Most times, they are slow to react and react in parts of the body that are not easy to treat, like mucus cells are for normal allergic reactions. Happening in the gut, these problems can persist for long periods of time before rearing their heads to any easily visible problems. To first dive into the world of food allergies, we need to speak of three types of allergic reactions and how they affect the body.
- Normal allergic reactions in the body
a) Anaphylactic Shock, Itchy / Runny Eyes, Hives
b) Happens in most mucus tissues
c) Usually fast and easily treatable
- Immunoglobulin A (IgA) Reaction
○ More intense reactions like those found in Celiac Disease
○ Diarrhea, Loose Stool, Acid Reflux, Vitamin Malabsorption, Leaky Gut, Nausea
○ Usually happens in intestines
○ Delayed reaction by the intestinal tract
- Immunoglobulin G (IgG) Reaction
○ Usually has autoimmune disorder component, body destroys its own tissue
○ Reactions are delayed days to weeks after consumption
○ Inflammation, IBS, Crohns, Migraines, Psoriasis
So, food allergies are generally IgA and IgG reactions, which are more severe and also harder to diagnose and treat. In fact, patients might experience similar results to these without the allergy showing up on an allergy test. This could be a food intolerance, which is another disorder that falls under the food sensitivity umbrella. The best way to treat food intolerances are to take the food out of patient’s diet for 90 days, and slowly add the food back in to see if symptoms will be replicated.
What causes these food sensitivities?
This is another difficult part about this topic, because nobody knows for sure. There are multiple theories in literature that tries to tackle this question. Some of these theories are:
When a “Leaky Gut” challenge is present, proteins make their way through the intestinal lining into the bloodstream in an unregulated fashion. Normally, large proteins are broken down into amino acids which then pass through the permeable layer of the intestines into the bloodstream. This permeable layer should be regulated internally to not allow larger proteins to enter into the bloodstream. With “leaky gut”, the intestinal membrane becomes somewhat hyperpermeable, allowing larger protein molecules to make their way into the bloodstream. Gluten has been well researched to cause this for a short period of time, leaving the body susceptible to unwanted proteins entering the bloodstream, which will create antibody reactions in the body that lead to associated immune reaction symptoms.
Those who have problems with milk/dairy tend to have deficiencies in vitamin d, potassium, aspartic acid, and asparagine. Those who are intolerant can sometimes slowly reintroduce dairy into their diet with correct supplementation of the deficient nutrients. This is part of my job, I identify which nutrients your body is deficient in, and work to replenish your body with those nutrients in order to achieve optimal health and function. When those nutrients are replenished, the affected organs can also return to optimal function, rendering your overall health dramatically better.
I welcome all unanswered questions! Arianna Anderson, N.D. 419-878-8312 [email protected]
Toledo and Waterville Ohio Naturopathic Doctor