Common allergens and your health

90 percent of all food allergies in the United States are linked to a very short list of foods. Keep in mind, you could easily have an intolerance or sensitivity that would not technically be classified as an allergy, but it is still preventing you from obtaining your best health.

Even if you don’t have an obvious reaction to these highly allergenic foods, such as breaking out into a rash, having trouble breathing, or intense stomach distress; the headaches or muscle aches you get, the mild to moderate indigestion, brain fog or daytime fatigue you experience, may be due to the consumption of these foods.

If you have been cleaning up your diet, following our Everyday Cleanse Series, and our Lose Weight, Increase Metabolism, and Detox series, but you still feel like there is something missing, it is time to get serious about eliminating the most common allergens from your diet to find out if it takes you to the next level of your optimal health.

Eliminate these common allergens

Dairy
Wheat/Gluten
Soy
Peanuts
Eggs
Shellfish/Fish
Corn
Nuts/Seeds
Strawberries
Stone fruits (fruits with a pit) Apricots, Peaches, Plums, Cherries
Rice
Gelatin

Knowing the exact component in any of the foods listed above that is the actual allergen for you, may not be clear in the beginning. For example, in the dairy category, it may be the lactose or the casein that doesn’t agree with you, or maybe it’s the combination, who knows? It doesn’t really matter until you narrow down the list of offending the food(s) first.

Are pesticides one of the common allergens?

Many times the allergy is to the pesticide residue that remains on the fruit, rather than the fruit itself. This can apply to any food. Depending on how and where the food is grown, where it is stored and how it is processed, can affect the allergen potential.

Research shows that high levels of pesticides and chemicals can possibly weaken food tolerance in some people, causing food allergies. Pesticides used by farmers, and chemicals found in consumer insect and weed control products, can also find their way into tap water.

Studies have shown that both food allergies and environmental pollution are increasing in the United States. Additional studies suggest these trends may be linked, and that increased use of pesticides and other chemicals is associated with a higher prevalence of food allergies.

Elimination Diet

There are a few ways to do an elimination diet. One way is to completely eliminate the above list of foods from your diet (remember to read labels carefully) for 2-4 weeks. Then start from the bottom of the list, add that food back into your diet one at a time paying close attention to if, and when, symptoms return or intensify. Keeping a food diary is key here.

It does take patience and willpower to stick to an elimination diet, but once you determine which foods are aggravating you and keep them out of your diet, the improvement in how you feel will have been worth the dedication of figuring it out.

Nightshades

There are many compounds in the following list of foods that despite their nutritional punch, can cause additional inflammation to an already inflamed person dealing with an “itis”. Most auto-immune healing protocols eliminate nightshade consumption completely. So if it isn’t a common allergen listed above that is aggravating you, try eliminating from this list next.

  • Ashwagandha
  • Bell peppers
  • Eggplant
  • Goji berries 
  • Hot peppers (such as chili peppers, jalapenos, habaneros, cayenne)
  • Paprika
  • Pimentos
  • Potatoes (not sweet potatoes)
  • Tomatillos
  • Tomatoes

Let us know what foods you are allergic or sensitive to. How did you figure it out? How did it change your life?

Photo credit: blog.foodnetwork.com

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