The Start of My Food Sensitivity Discovery Experiment

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Alright my friends, family, clients and fellow Facebook and twitter followers.   As promised I have started my food experiment as seen on ivillage – Always Tired? Stomach Upset? Try This Diet to Find Your Food Sensitivities.

WHERE DID I START AND WHY FOCUS ON FOOD SENSITIVITIES?

Last month I decided that I would embark on a food sensitivity experiment to find out about how food affects my mind and body.  I have never really had many issues with foods.  At least no major GI episodes or sicknesses.  However, I also have the occasional gassy episode, tiredness during the day, maybe a little trouble sleeping, and limited issues with Candida (yeast) infections.   So I thought, “hmmm I don’t have many issues  that I have linked to foods specifically but I bet that there are some hidden links I have not noticed yet.”   Soon to my astonishment I learned that there are many symptoms aside from GI tract (loose stool, bloating, heart burn etc.) that one can link to food.

MY CLIENTS STRUGGLING TO LOSE:

Recently many of my clients have found that they are having functional body issues with foods like bloating, gastric reflux, GI tract issues, foggy brain, tiredness, irritability, inflammation of the joints, and above all trouble losing weight.   My client Sue was having many if not all these issues and soon found that she was intolerant or sensitive to both gluten and dairy.  She now is steadily losing inches however, not seeing it on the scale which tells me that food can shape you and really cause some inflammation and functional affects including fat metabolism.  My client Heidi found she could not eat gluten or she would not lose body fat.   The more I mentioned my research to my clients, friends, and acquaintances I found out that there are many more people battling food sensitivities than I originally expected.   This is when I really started asking myself, “I wonder if I have issues that are causing my body to not function optimally?”

I also began thinking that maybe there is more to my occasional gassy, bloated, indigestion than meets the eye.   I am all about living optimally and food could really be putting a damper on my moods, energy, and my overall health. So I started doing a little research first starting with gluten that opened a whole new can of worms.   If you want two well researched and great books on the subject I recommend Wheat Belly & Dangerous Grains.

Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to HealthDangerous Grains: Why Gluten Cereal Grains May Be Hazardous To Your Health

MADALINE A TODDLER WITH “AUTISM” OR  FOOD SENSITIVITIES:

I must share this miraculous success story that happened to someone dear to me and strongly influenced my curiosity to learn more about food sensitivities.    Madaline my “niece” (her name is in quotes due to not being married to her uncle yet) at a year and a half was having some development problems.   Her parents noticed she was not sleeping through the night, identifying colors or objects by name or pointing, reacting to her name when called, among other concerning traits.  She was taken to doctors and diagnosed with mild or possible autism.  This was alarming since we knew she was developing fine just 6-8 months prior.

Thank goodness that her parents did not give up and found a doctor that specializes in food allergies, sensitivities, and child development.   They found out that she was sensitive to tomatoes, cane sugar, cows milk, and gluten.   Her parents quickly took her off everything specified and within a couple weeks she was sleeping through the night, her energy was better, and she started reacting to her name when called.  I was brought to tears when I read the e-mail written to me describing how one night her dad was working with her on identifying a red ball he was holding in his hand.  Madaline yelled Bah bah bah   BAAAAALLLL so loud her mom heard her from upstairs and ran down in glee that she was talking and identifying objects.  They were so relieved and so was I!  I was happy to hear from Madaline’s grandma after she visited her last week, that Madaline is a happy and optimally functioning 2 year old!!  ABSO-FREAKING AMAZING!

I had to share this story with you because if food sensitivities have the ability to create the symptoms of autism in a toddler then what can it be doing to an adult?   This story strongly influenced my curiosity into the world of food sensitivities.

MY JOURNEY REVEALED!

I am currently embarking on my journey of food senstitivies and plan on sharing a bunch of information and my personal experiences along the way  as I discover more on the subject.

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THE SYMPTOMS:

First I want to share with you a little bit of knowledge on the subject.  So let’s start with the symptoms.

Contrary to popular belief food allergies and intolerance do not only lead to an upset tummy, loose poop, and digestive issues.   Intolerance can lead to difficulty losing body fat, inflammation in the body, overactive immune responses, crappy moods,  headaches, heart burn, gas, congestion, frequent need for clearing of the throat, foggy brain, and so on and so forth.

More specifically,  I learned that food allergies to food can lead to

  • runny nose
  • puffy eyes
  • asthma
  • itchy mouth
  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • blood in the stool
  • hives
  • eczema skin rashes
  • wheezing

Food sensitivities  in contrast can be as subtle as

  • persistent clearing of the throat after eating
  • fatigue
  • gas
  • bloating
  • mood swings
  • nervousness
  • migraines
  • eating disorders
  • increase the severity of the symptoms of
    • rheumatoid arthritis
    • asthma
    • schizophrenia
    • other diseases normally not considered food related.

Wow! So there is much more connected to my gut than I thought!

Check out my next blogs for weeks 1-4 on my food sensitivity experiment!

Remember you can find the protocol plus ideas on recipes to help you in your first week off sensitive foods at Always Tired? Stomach Upset? Try This Diet to Find Your Food Sensitivities.

WEEK 1 – Sensitive free eating

WEEK 2 – Addition of dairy, eggs, and sugar

WEEK 3 – Addition of peanuts and corn

WEEK 4 – Addition of Soy and Gluten

WEEK 5 – The aftermath – Summary and conclusions

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