Food Allergies and Food Intolerances… What’s the difference? Thomas DeLauer breaks down the science behind Food Allergies and Food Intolerances (and …
– What's going on, Jigsaw crew?
Today we're talking
about the immune system,
and we're talking about all that stuff
that you're allergic to
or that stuff that you
pretend to be allergic to
so you don't have to eat it.
But in reality, we're
talking about the difference
between allergies and intolerances,
something that actually
triggers a histamine response
versus a structural
response to a physical food.
So let's get straight into the science
so you can have a solid understanding
and know which is which.
The first thing that I
really wanna talk about
is a food allergy and what
happens inside your body.
Okay, a food allergy is
a reaction that begins
with a food shortly after eating it.
So, you've probably heard
of a food allergy before
and you know what ends up happening.
You might get 'em in the way of hives.
You might get 'em in the
way of maybe some rashes.
Or maybe you end up having
to run to the bathroom
or you end up getting some bloating.
You know if you have a reaction to a food.
You've probably experienced it before.
Now, that's the simplicity of it,
but let's talk a little bit more
about what's actually happening.
You see, at the very, very root of it,
when you have an allergy,
it's just a simple
substance that is harmless
that your body is responding to
as if it was a harmful foreign invader.
So basically your body
sees a food come in,
and it think that it's bad,
so it triggers a reaction.
But there's a pretty
interesting process that occurs
when it comes down to that.
You see, that response
that actually happens
with that food is coming
from something known as IgE.
It's a specific kind of protein,
and we're gonna talk about
these all in a second.
They're called immunoglobulins.
But in this particular case,
this IgE protein attaches
itself to the foreign invader,
in this case the harmless food
that is labeled as a foreign invader.
So the IgE protein attaches
itself to the foreign invader,
and then from there it triggers
multiple chemical responses,
one of which is usually histamine.
Now, if you've ever taken
an antihistamine before,
this is what you're fighting.
You're not fighting the IgE response.
You're fighting the histamine response.
So here's what's interesting.
If you have allergies to
multiple different foods,
a lot of times you might find
that the reactions are similar
amongst all those foods.
So, let's say for example
you're allergic to shellfish
and you're allergic to peanuts.
You might find that if you eat shellfish,
you end up with your throat closing up.
Well, you might find
that if you eat peanuts,
you end up having the same kinda reaction.
And that's simply because your
reaction is to the histamine.
It's not really to the food.
So there's a deeper problem going on
where your body tends to
recognize the shellfish
or the peanuts as a foreign invader,
triggering this already built-in mechanism
that's causing your throat to close up.
But let's talk about the
other immunoglobulins,
and it gives you a big
broad spectrum overview
of what is happening
with your immune system
with foods and pathogens.
So IgE, like we talked about,
that's the immunoglobulin that is released
whenever we have a foreign invader
that attaches itself to it.
Then we have IgA.
See, IgA is the main
protein that is released
whenever we have any kind of infection
or issue going on with
the respiratory tract
or the digestive system.
So if you get a blood test and you notice
that your IgA levels are super high,
at lot of times it can be indicative
of some kind of chronic issue
with your digestive system
or possibly even pneumonia
or some respiratory condition like that.
Then we get into IgG.
See, IgG is another really
common one that we see,
and IgG is a response
to a bacterial issue.
So you could have some kind of
low-scale bacterial infection
that's going on throughout your body
that you don't really know about
that's not really manifesting in symptoms,
but it's causing your IgG to be elevated.
This means you are
having an immune response
and your body is creating proteins
to ultimately attack this,
but you may not realize it.
Then in the cases of
more chronic conditions
like Lyme disease where you
actually do have symptoms,
you might notice that your IgG
levels are super, super high.
And then of course if you
have a rampant infection,
you're definitely gonna notice
that your IgG levels are high.
Then we have IgD.
IgD is an immunoglobulin
that really isn't talked
about too, too much.
All that is is an antigen,
an antibody receptor.
Whenever we have antibodies in the body
to help tell our bodies
that something is okay
and we don't have to
have a response to it,
we still need to have proteins
that receive that message.
And that's all that IgD does.
So, that's really gonna stay
stagnant for the most part
when you're looking at your blood work.
Then we have IgM.
See, IgM responds to blood infections.
If you have high levels of IgM,
you probably need to be
a little bit concerned.
There are some exclusions,
but for the most part if
you have a blood infection,
you might wanna go get checked out,
'cause that could lead
into a lot of other things.
And sometimes IgA comes
after a chronic IgE exposure.
So if you've been exposed to a food
that you're mildly allergic to for awhile,
it might eventually lead to
a broader scale infection
or issue based on the immune response.
Now to wrap up the allergy part,
I'm gonna help make
some sense of all this.
So remember how I told
you that the IgEs respond
to the actual component
that you're allergic to?
Well, there's a reason why people end up
getting more allergic to
things as time goes on.
You see, it's the job
of our immune system,
it's the job of that IgE
to go and attach itself to that food
so that the body know
that there is an issue,
which means the next
time you eat the food,
the body's gonna respond even faster.
So here's an example.
Let's say you're allergic
to peanuts again.
The first time you eat peanuts,
you're gonna have that IgE response,
which is gonna trigger histamine,
and you'll show a small reaction.
Then if you were to eat peanuts again,
you're gonna notice your reaction's worse
because the body has already figured out
how to send histamine
there in a really fast way
'cause that IgE already
knows how to respond.
That's why when you're
testing food out with infants,
you're usually testing them out
in very small, independent doses
so that you can see if
there's even a small,
little, teeny, minuscule reaction.
That way you know as a baby
if they have a reaction to a food
so that you don't continue
to feed it on later
when they end up having a worse reaction.
Okay, now let's talk about
intolerances for a second.
There's a big difference.
See, an intolerance is simply the lack
of the body's ability to break down food.
It's usually structural or
functional in that case,
meaning we're lacking an enzyme
to physically break a food down.
A good example is lactose intolerance.
People will say, "I'm allergic to milk."
No, you're lactose intolerant,
which means you're lacking
the enzyme to break it down,
so you end up having a
lot of digestive issues.
You have gas.
You have a intolerance.
Lactose intolerance.
So that's where the
difference comes into play.
Now, there are a lot of foods
that we can be intolerant to
that can lead to an
immune response later on.
See, what ends up happening is
if we're consistently eating
foods that we can't break down,
then we start to cause
some structural damage
within our digestive system.
And once there's structural
damage, there's microtrauma.
And when there's
microtrauma, there's tears.
And when there's tears
in the intestinal tract,
of course your immune
system's gonna attack it.
You could have bacteria that
gets into those microtears,
and that causes the issues
with all of the allergic-like responses.
So over time, by eating foods
that you are intolerant to,
you will ultimately cause yourself
to have an immune reaction.
But at its root, an actual response
as an intolerance is non-immunological,
so that means there's no
immune system response.
Now, there's a couple of things
that can trigger intolerances,
because it's not something
that we're always born with.
If you have high bouts of
stress for a period of time,
you can start to break down enzymes
and structural components
that would normally help
you metabolize food.
So if you go through a period
of really, really stressful stuff,
you might find all of a sudden
you can't eat broccoli anymore,
or you might find that
you can't do milk anymore.
These intolerances can come on over time.
You're not born with them.
So it's something to always be aware of.
And again, if you continue
to eat those foods
after an intolerance,
you can trigger a more
serious allergic response
that you're not gonna like.
So as always, my Jigsaw
friends, if you haven't already,
make sure you're checking
out the full line
of Jigsaw products, but of
course my personal favorite,
Magnesium SRT, which
is a clinically proven
sustained release technology magnesium tab
that's gonna help you get
the best out of your life.
I'll see you soon.
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