There are TWO main types of FOOD INTOLERANCE that I deal with on a regular basis in my clinic. Functional Food Intolerance and Non-IgE immune mediated food intolerance
Functional food intolerance is caused by maldigestion of food due to low levels of gastric secretions or Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO). Improving digestive function with bitter herbs, liver & gall-bladder support and probiotics is a vital part of managing functional food intolerances.
Lactose, fat and FODMAP intolerance are types of functional intolerances. Maldigestion of these foods has an osmotic effect in the bowel causing diarrhoea, and fermentation of undigested food by gut bacteria causes gas, bloating and cramping pain which is often associated with a diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Functional intolerances are best managed by reducing intake of the offending foods initially, with studies finding significant improvement in IBS symptoms with a low FODMAP diet. However long-term dietary restriction can cause health problems. A low FODMAP diet is low in fibre and prebiotics and can contribute to dysbiosis, while long-term avoidance of fats can cause deficiencies in essential fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins. Therefore it is vital that following the initial removal of the offending foods, significant work is done to improve digestive function so that the food group can be reintroduced and tolerated.
Non-IgE immune mediated food intolerance is caused by the release of antibodies and inflammatory compounds in response to certain foods. These inflammatory molecules act as a final 'chemical' barrier when intestinal barrier function is impaired and food antigens are able to cross the gut wall intact. This sets off a systemic inflammatory cascade which may present in many ways, from Inflammatory Bowel Disease to arthritis and autoimmunity. Common food triggers include gluten, casein, corn, soy, eggs, yeast, food additives and salicylates.
Reducing inflammation and improving intestinal barrier function is key to managing immune mediated food intolerance but effective management means complete avoidance of the offending foods while improving gut barrier function and reducing intestinal and systemic inflammation.
For testing options to identify offending foods and to help with recovery from food intolerance please contact Dee.
Time and time again I hear people ask "why do I feel so bad when they tell me there's nothing wrong?" My goal is to help solve your health problems, to get to the bottom of things, not just symptom control but to bring about a return to good health.