Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health
Grow Youthful: How to Slow Your Aging and Enjoy Extraordinary Health

Allergies

Allergy versus intolerance

Causes

Symptoms

Common food allergens

Testing for allergies

Prevention / remedies / cures / treatment for allergies

References

Allergy versus intolerance

Allergies and hypersensitivities are when your body's immune system has a response to an allergin (trigger). In the case of an allergy, antibodies (IgE) are produced by your immune system. With a hypersensitivity, there are no antibodies.

Food intolerance, on the other hand, does not involve the immune system. Food intolerances are the most common cause of digestive problems, and can also cause other symptoms such as headaches and fatigue. Some people are also intolerant to specific chemicals such as salicylates, caffeine, amines, glutamate, and food additives, colourings and preservatives.

Food intolerances can lead to irritable bowel syndrome, and may be related to malabsorption.

More and more people are getting chronic allergies. An allergic reaction is your body's response to what it thinks is an invader. The most common allergens (triggers) are foods like nuts, fish, shellfish, citrus and eggs; dusts; mould; cleaning and other household chemicals; pollens and animal danders.

Causes

First exposure. Exposure of the infant's skin, lungs or other parts of the body to the potential allergen BEFORE first eating it. For example, using peanut oil on a baby's skin before that infant has ever eaten peanuts or peanut oil may set off a lifelong peanut allergy. This is because the immune system first identifies peanuts as a toxin on the skin rather than a food in the gut, and is then programmed to remember peanuts as an allergen.

Infants have a strong instinct to taste and test potential foods with their mouths. Everything new gets licked and sucked. This is why infants growing up on a farm or in a place with different foods and animals around them, tend to be far less allergic as adults than infants brought up in sterile, ultra-clean, urban, helicopter-parent environments. (1)

Antibiotics. Upset of gut microbiome, particularly the beneficial microbes in the digestive tract. A healthy balance of bacteria, fungi and viruses in the gut is an essential part of the proper functioning of our entire immune system. A single course of antibiotics can devastate the microbes in your digestive tract that have taken a lifetime to build up. Pollution, pharmaceutical drugs, processed food and other toxins also attack these good bacteria. Your immune system becomes hyperactive, responding to many substances in your environment in an allergic manner, with hay fever, food allergies and other allergies to dust, mites, animals and so on. (1)

Leaky gut. In particular, candida is associated with the rise in food allergies today. People suffering from chronic candidiasis often have a "leaky gut". Partially digested food is able to pass into the bloodstream, and your immune system thinks it is under attack from that particular food. Good bacteria provide a protective gut barrier, preventing leaky gut. Insufficient stomach acidity is a similar cause - again, your immune system is triggered by partially-digested food.

Pyroluria. A condition affecting more than 10% of all people.

Symptoms

The symptoms below can range from mild to severe. In the worst case, people develop life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis with difficult breathing, rapid swelling of the throat or tongue, a sudden drop in blood pressure, and loss of consciousness.

Common food allergens

Food allergies are particularly common today, with a wide range of foods affecting different people. The allergic reaction can sometimes occur within minutes, but other foods only show their affect after a day or several days.

Testing for allergies

Your doctor can test for specific allergies. You can also do an elimination test, where you eat nothing but safe vegetables and other safe foods for ten days. You then gradually re-introduce suspect foods, one-by-one at subsequent meals. Eat a large quantity of the suspect food, and measure your pulse before and after, and each half hour after. Try to ensure all other conditions remain the same. If your pulse goes up significantly, or you suffer other allergic reactions, you are probably allergic to that food. Of course, you can be allergic to several foods.

Prevention / remedies / cures / treatment for allergies

If you use any of these remedies, please come back next week (or whenever you have an outcome) and let us know about your experience. Please leave a comment as many people are interested.

See details of remedies recommended by Grow Youthful visitors, and their experience with them.

References

1. Bill Hesselmar, Fei Sjoberg, Robert Saalman, Nils Aberg, Ingegerd Adlerberth, Agnes E. Wold. Pacifier Cleaning Practices and Risk of Allergy Development. Pediatrics. Published online May 6, 2013. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-3345.