Offending Foods – Part 1

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By Mark Pitstick, MA, DC

peanutfreeAs I know very well from personal experience, food allergies can cause many serious physical and mental symptoms. I was nearly fifty years old before figuring out that I am allergic to wheat, dairy, corn, soy and sugar. Do you know how many meals and processed foods those five are in?

I suffered with many symptoms—clues from my body that it couldn’t tolerate those foods. Those symptoms hurt the quality of my life as a family member, friend, doctor and teacher. I did a good job . . . but not always the outstanding level that is possible.

Now I eat the real food diet 95 percent of the time and can tolerate occasionally eating a little bit of those foods. Addressing my food allergies has been a huge part of feeling happy, healthy and energetic almost all of the time.

That’s one reason I’m so passionate about getting this basic wellness information out to as many people as possible. Children shouldn’t have to suffer because of food allergies nor should adults have to search high and low for solutions to their health problems. It’s hard to know and show your fullest potentials when you feel tired, depressed and out of balance.

Food allergies can cause many serious physical and mental symptoms. Allergies create inflammatory changes that, in turn, contribute to symptoms of the bowel (diarrhea, constipation, bloating, excess gas), musculo-skeletal system (joint and muscle soreness and stiffness), “mental problems” (depression, brain fog, anxiety, panic, fatigue), cardiovascular system and other areas.

Food allergies can cause many serious physical and mental symptoms.

Marshall Mandell, M.D., author of Allergy, the Unrecognized Cause of Physical, Mental, and Psycho-somatic Illness, says that processed foods containing sugar and white flour are common triggers of food allergies. Canned foods offend more often than fresh sources.

The most common allergy producing foods are dairy products, wheat, yeast, eggs, sugar, corn and soy. Nonfat and low-fat varieties of cow’s milk are especially troublesome because there’s less fat to buffer casein, the allergy-producing protein in milk. Allergies to gluten—found in wheat, rye, barley, oats, kamut, spelt and triticale—are also very common.

Nutritional experts are also increasingly questioning the benefits of soy because it’s a very common allergy-provoking food, is difficult to digest, and often comes from genetically modified sources. In moderation, fermented, organic, non-GMO soy products—miso, natto, tempeh and tofu—are better tolerated than non-fermented soy products. Serving sizes are an issue as well. Asian cultures tend to use small amounts while westerners overdo it.

People are more familiar with IgE allergies that cause immediate onset reactions, such as those experienced with allergies to peanuts. The symptoms are obvious and directly follow ingestion of the offending food. As such, they are relatively easy to identify and avoid.

Much more common, however, are IgG or delayed onset food allergies. Symptoms from this type of food allergy typically take about 48 hours to show up and may not always trigger a reaction. Thus, it’s difficult to determine what foods caused what symptoms. Paradoxically, people are sometimes most allergic to foods that they like and eat the most.

However, as discussed in Hidden Food Allergies by James Braly, M.D., and Patrick Holford, identifying IgG food allergies is easier with current testing methods. They recommend a quantitative IgG ELISA food allergy test.

Another method of identifying foods that trigger allergies is to use food rotation and elimination techniques as described in How to Control Your Allergies by Robert Forman, Ph.D.; The McDougall Plan by John McDougall, M.D.; or Is This Your Child? by Doris Rapp, M.D.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article…..

Mark Pitstick, B.S., M.A., D.C., has over forty years experience and training in hospitals, pastoral counseling settings, mental health centers, and holistic private practice. His training includes a premedical degree, graduate theology/pastoral counseling studies, masters in clinical psychology, and doctorate in chiropractic. His book Radiant Wellness: A Holistic Guide for Optimal Body, Mind and Spirit was endorsed by Drs. Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Bernie Siegel and others. Mark has been a frequent radio and TV guest and hosted a nationally syndicated radio show. He has presented many workshops on holistic health and spiritual awareness. He has been a review editor and regular contributor to many magazines and e-zines. Mark founded the Radiant Wellness Center and the Stressor-Nutrient Balancing healing method.

Disclaimer: Listing improvements of past patients’ problems does not imply a guarantee for those with similar conditions. I do not claim to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. I do teach people and health care professionals how to assist the body in healing itself of imbalances.

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