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Food sensitivity or intolerance is defined as clinical gastrointestinal (GI) reaction with unknown immunological link. This is in contrast to a food allergy, which is defined as reproducible symptoms that occur after the ingestion of a specific food.
The causes of food sensitivities or intolerances are:
- Most young patients with food allergies are sensitive to potent allergens (eg. eggs, milk, peanuts, soy)
- Older patients with food allergies may react to potent allergens and other foods (especially shellfish)
- Food additives such as MSG (monosodium glutamate)
The most commonly experienced signs and symptoms of a food sensitivity or intolerance are:
- Initially eczema alone or in association with GI symptoms
- Asthma and allergic rhinitis (runny nose due to allergies) that may be aggravated by specific foods
The following diagnostic tools may be used to determine a food sensitivity or intolerance:
- Skin allergy test
- IgG and/or IgE testing
- Elimination and reintroductory challenge diet
From a Naturopathic standpoint, Dr. Moira Kwok ND will obtain a very thorough medical history in order to put all of your "puzzle pieces" together to form a whole picture of everything that is going on from a health perspective. From this holistic approach to treatment, she will put together an individualized treatment plan based on a combination of dietary and lifestyle recommendations, supplements, botanicals, acupuncture and/or IV therapy that is based on your specific case.
- Beers MH & Berkow R (Editors). 1999. The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy (17th Ed.). Merck Research Laboratories: Whitehouse Station, NJ.