What Is Food Intolerance
Food intolerance means your gut is sensitive to certain foods and cant tolerate them. When you eat these foods, you may experience uncomfortable symptoms like gas, diarrhea and abdominal pain.
Be Mindful Of Your Fiber Intake
Foods rich in fiber like beans and whole grains are among the foods that cause gas. But on the other hand, not eating enough fiber can cause constipation and bloating. There are two types of fibersoluble and insoluble. Our bodies need both and a balance of both types is important for proper digestion. Try to eat equal amounts of soluble and insoluble fiber. Below is a breakdown of the differences between soluble fiber and insoluble fiber:
- Slows down digestion
- Dissolves in the water in the large intestine and creates a gel that coats the digestive tract
- Helps lower cholesterol levels
- Improves glycemic index in diabetes patients
Examples of foods high in soluble fiber
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Food Allergy Food Sensitivity And Fatigue
In anyone with fatigue, understanding food allergies is important as many people with chronic fatigue have significant food allergies and intolerance. In addition to fatigue, symptoms of food intolerance often include digestive complaints like bloating or diarrhea, headaches, muscle pain and brain fog. A common reason for developing food allergy and intolerance is poor gut wall function and other digestive issues. Even irritable bowel syndrome, a common diagnosis with intermittent diarrhea and constipation, can be triggered by food allergy.
The University of York in the U.K. conducted a survey to help understand the benefits of elimination diets based on the results of a food intolerance test. Out of 436 who reported experiencing fatigue, 87% reported a boost to their energy levels having removed their trigger foods, defined as foods which show a positive IgG reaction to antibodies in the blood. Overall in the study, 76% of people who rigorously followed the recommended diet reported a benefit, 68% of which experienced this after 3 weeks. Other improvements included digestive issues 80% headaches, asthma, rhinitis, eczema, joint pain all improved between 70 and 80%
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Causes Of A Bloated Stomach
Here are some of the most common causes of a bloated stomach for you to learn about, as well as advice on determining one from the other and what to do about it.
- Food intolerance: If you notice that your stomach bloat is happening within an hour or two after eating a meal, it could be a sign that it is food intolerance-related. This is also the case if you are dealing with digestion and bowel movement symptoms around the same time. If you notice that these mysterious symptoms are also happening when you eat one meal or ingredient in particular, this is another sign.
- Food allergy: A bloated stomach related to a food allergy is also possible, as inflammation is a common allergic reaction, and it can often cause stomach bloat as well as general inflammation in the form of a rash or hives. If you notice the bloat and digestive discomfort happening within minutes of eating a certain food or meal, this is another indication that it could be caused by a food allergy.
- Gut health issues: There is also the possibility that you are dealing with a bloated stomach due to an unhappy gut. This could be a bacterial imbalance, or it could be another imbalance related to poor nutrition, etc. An unhappy stomach is going to create blot as it works to digest and breaks down what you are putting into it. If you notice that all foods seem to be creating the same issue, this is something to think about.
What Causes Stomach Bloating
The last meal you ate is sitting deep inside of your belly right now, churning and breaking down in a soup of acid and enzymes. Its a digestive process that typically moves things along pretty efficiently.
Some food, though, tends to linger longer than it should in your winding intestinal track. Food that sits begins to decompose and ferment.
The result? Youre going to get some gassiness, says Czerwony.
That bloated feeling you get after eating certain foods is essentially those gasses building up internally. Basically, youre inflating like a balloon which can suddenly make you feel like youre about to burst.
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What Does Bloating Feel Like
Have you ever felt like thereâs too much gas in your abdomenâor that your belly is too heavy and full? These are a couple of ways people describe what bloating feels like. Bloatingâwhich can include abdominal painâcan be caused by several possible factors. It probably doesnât come as a surprise, but the food you eat might sometimes be at fault for unpleasant abdominal symptoms like stomach bloating.
Foods that cause bloating often vary from one person to the next. A food that leaves one person feeling uncomfortably bloated might have no affect on someone else. Thatâs simply because everyoneâs body is different in one way or anotherâso our bodies respond in unique ways to the food we eat.
That being said, there are a number of foods that are thought to contribute to uncomfortable bloating in people with some food intolerances, sensitivities, and other conditions. Youâll find several of these foods listed below if you often experience symptoms like gas and bloating after eating, see if any of these are frequently part of your meals.
Dont Eat Too Much At A Time
Being stuffed can feel like being bloated, but the problem is that you simply ate too much.
If youre eating big meals and tend to feel uncomfortable afterward, then try smaller portions. Add another daily meal if necessary.
A subset of people who experience bloating dont really have an enlarged stomach or increased pressure in the abdomen. The issue is mostly sensory .
A person with a tendency to be bloated will experience discomfort from a smaller amount of food than a person who rarely feels bloated.
For this reason, simply eating smaller meals can be incredibly useful.
Chewing your food better can have a two-fold effect. It reduces the amount of air you swallow with the food , and it also makes you eat slower, which is linked to reduced food intake and smaller portions .
People who experience bloating often have increased sensitivity to food in the stomach. Therefore, eating smaller meals can be very useful.
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Small Intestinal Bowel Overgrowth
- Abdominal pain
Small intestinal bowel overgrowth is when theres an abnormal increase in the bacteria that live in your small intestine, such as E. coli or Klebsiella.
Several things can lead to SIBO. Surgery of the intestines that changes your anatomy can cause it. Decreased motility of the small intestine caused by IBS, diabetes, or opioid drugs can also cause SIBO. And people who have a weakened immune system have a higher risk of SIBO.
SIBO can interfere with your bodys ability to absorb nutrients from your food, which can lead to vitamin deficiencies.
SIBO can be diagnosed using a non-invasive carbohydrate breath test. Your doctor may also recommend an endoscopy and colonoscopy to rule out other diseases.
Treatment may include dietary changes, nutritional supplements, and antibiotics to control bacterial overgrowth.
Severe Food Allergy In Children
Allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, are common, although deaths from anaphylaxis are rare. Most schools and childcare services across Australia are required to have an anaphylaxis management policy in place.Banning particular foods is not recommended as it can create a sense of complacency and is difficult to monitor and enforce. A better approach is to educate staff, students and the community about the risks associated with anaphylaxis and put strategies in place to minimise exposure to known allergens.
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Definition Of Food Allergy
Food Allergieshappen because of a reaction by the immune system to foods or certain parts of foods that are allergens.
When the body reacts to an allergen, it releases chemicals called histamines that can cause symptoms. People with food allergies can have digestive, respiratory, and even skin symptoms. People with severe allergies can have a life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis.
Food allergies are diagnosed with blood tests that measure IgE antibodies, which are produced due to the body’s immune response to certain foods.
Foods That Can Cause Bloating
Eating wheat products might trigger bloatingâeven if you donât have celiac disease . Thatâs because gluten might cause symptoms in people who donât test positive for celiac disease, but who do have non-celiac gluten sensitivity . Though this condition is not fully understood, other intestinal symptoms of non-celiac gluten sensitivity may include abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Fortunately, if you have non-celiac gluten sensitivity, you can still enjoy delicious mealsâwhether youâre into pasta, bread, cookies, or other foods that traditionally have gluten-containing ingredients. Just shop around for gluten-free versions of foods like these youâll probably find plenty of tasty options that may also help limit your abdominal discomfort.
Rye and barley
Like wheat, both rye and barley also contain glutenâso people with non-celiac gluten sensitivity may experience symptoms like abdominal bloating after eating these foods.
Thereâs good news here, though: if you have a gluten sensitivity, avoiding foods like rye and barley can reduce bloating and potentially other symptoms you might experience. Plus, there are healthy foods you can include in your diet to replace rye and barleyâlike rice , amaranth, millet, quinoa, and buckwheat, which contain no gluten.
If youâre lactose intolerant, then youâre probably familiar with the digestive problems that come with consuming dairy products.
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Treating Food Allergy Or Intolerance
The easiest way to treat a food allergy or intolerance is to eliminate the offending food/s from the diet. Sometimes, the body can tolerate the food if it is avoided for a time, then reintroduced in small doses, particularly for food intolerances. Before you eliminate or reintroduce foods, seek advice from a specialist doctor and dietitian.
Prevention Is The Key
Whether you have a food allergy, food intolerance, or sensitivity, the key to long-term food intolerance pain relief is avoidance. Once you have identified the culprit of your pain or undesirable food allergy symptoms, take measures to avoid the trigger.
Always read labels and ask whats in your food before indulging. In the case of a food allergy, make sure everyone around you is made aware, just in case an emergency happens. Lastly, always have an anaphylaxis plan in place. Though the severity of some food allergies can lessen over time, its best to avoid testing the waters with even the slightest amount of potentially dangerous food.
Kylene Bogden is one of the most well respected Functional Sports Dietitians in the United States. As a high school and collegiate sprinter, she experienced recurrent injury and fatigue. After years of constant struggle, she eventually learned that an abundance of processed foods and poor fueling strategies were the root of her performance issues. Kylenes personal journey as an athlete fueled her passion for finding a more progressive approach to sports nutrition. Since then, she has helped thousands of individuals dramatically improve overall health and athletic performance by taking a whole food approach. To learn more about Kylenes story and how a functional nutrition approach can help you to achieve your goals, simply click on the contact us link in the upper right-hand corner today!
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What Is A Food Allergy
A food allergy is an immune system response. It is caused when the body mistakes an ingredient in food usually a protein as harmful and creates a defense system to fight it. An allergic reaction occurs when the antibodies are battling an invading food protein. The most common food allergies are shellfish, nuts, fish, eggs, peanuts, and milk.
Gut Barrier And Oral Intolerance
Food allergy represents an abnormal response of the mucosal immune system to antigens delivered through the oral route. The gastrointestinal mucosal barrier is a complex physical and immunologic structure. Despite the complex mucosal barrier, about 2% of ingested food antigens are absorbed and transported throughout the normal mature gut wall.21,22 Even though intact foreign food antigens routinely penetrate the gastrointestinal tract, they infrequently induce clinical symptoms because of the development of oral tolerance to dietary proteins in most individuals.23 Recent studies suggested that antigen-presenting cells, especially intestinal epithelial cells and dendritic cells, and regulatory T cells play a central role in oral tolerance.24,25 However, the underlying immunologic mechanisms involved in oral tolerance induction are not fully understood.
A large epidemiologic study has identified infectious gastroenteritis as the most significant environmental risk factor for the development of IBS,26 suggesting that previous infection and persistent low-grade inflammation may play an important role in the pathogenesis of functional gut diseases. This may be because of impairment of the complex immune response of the gastrointestinal mucosa, which results in a breakdown of oral tolerance.
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Do Constipation Gassiness And Bowel Movement Changes Indicate A Food Allergy
Gassiness by itself isnt a food allergy symptom, either.
And unless its diarrhea, a bowel movement change probably isnt caused by a food allergy.
A baby whos crying and constipated, or crying and gassy, with no other symptoms, is not experiencing a food allergy reaction. Theyre having different stomach troubles.
Not Drinking Enough Water
We get it: When you’re feeling bloated the last thing you want to do is drink more water. But ironically, downing a glass or two of H2O is exactly what you should do. “If you are dehydrated, your body will retain conserve water, which can lead to bloating,” says Rumsey. “Staying hydrated also speeds up digestion and can counteract the effects of salt and carb-induced bloating.” Aim for 6 to 8 glasses of water throughout the day.
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Unorthodox Tests Can Be Misleading
Some people use unorthodox methods for diagnosing health problems. Several misleading tests have been promoted for diagnosing food allergies and intolerances, without any credible evidence, and at significant expense as these tests are not rebated.
These tests include cytotoxic food testing, Vega testing, kinesiology, allergy elimination techniques, iridology, pulse testing, Alcat testing, Rinkel’s intradermal skin testing, reflexology, hair analysis and IgG food antibody testing. Not only do these tests lack any scientific rationale, but have been shown to be inaccurate and unreliable in published studies.
Treatment based on inaccurate results is not only misleading, but can result in ineffective and sometimes harmful treatments, and delay the proper management of food allergies and intolerances.
How To Prevent Bloating
To keep yourself from getting bloated, you can:
- Eat slowly
- Cut down your alcohol consumption
- When increasing dietary fiber, go slowly
- Get checked for medical conditions and, if you have one, follow your treatment regimen
It may help to see a dietitian, who can help you make positive changes to your diet and eating habits.
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Tips To Avoid Bloating
Its not just what you eat that can cause bloating. How you eat and how much you eat also plays a role. To keep your belly from feeling swollen, Czerwony offers this advice:
- Chew more. Smaller bits of food are easier to digest than large chunks, making it less likely that dinner will hang around too long in your gut.
- Stay hydrated. Drinking more fluids helps keep things moving along in your GI tract. Think of it like adding water to a Slip N Slide®.
- Dont go back for seconds. Eating too much overloads your digestive system. Just think of how you sometimes feel after Thanksgiving dinner, advises Czerwony.
- Be mindful of dietary changes. Your body adjusts to what you eat to a certain extent. But if suddenly start eating different foods, your digestive system may struggle to handle the change.
If youve already made some choices that left you bloated, dont worry: The feeling will pass. It might be a good idea to go for a walk, though, recommends Czerwony. If you start moving, that food will start moving, too.
You also might want to consider changing your shopping list to include some of these foods that can help reduce bloating.
Other Ways To Reduce Bloating
Bloating is a very common problem, but can often be resolved with relatively simple changes.
There are several strategies that can help reduce bloating, outlined in this article.
If you have persistent digestive problems, then you may want to consider a low-FODMAP diet. It can be incredibly effective, not just for bloating but for other digestive issues as well.
However, make sure to also see a doctor to rule out a potentially serious medical condition.
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How Can You Prevent Food Intolerance
You can take some precautionary steps to prevent the undesirable symptoms of food intolerance.
- Over time, you can learn which foods cause indigestion and limit their intake or only consume them in small amounts.
- Read food labels to check for problem or trigger ingredients. Labels of processed foods usually list the ingredients that people are most commonly allergic or intolerant to.
- You may inform the waiter or chef about your intolerance if you are dining out.
Some intolerances are manageable. For example, you can drink lactose-free milk instead of avoiding milk altogether if you are lactose intolerant. For symptoms like heartburn or stomachache, you can take antacid medication.