Allergy Vs. Intolerance

Many people ask me all the time what is the difference between an allergy or an intolerance.  And how does this affect allergy testing.  I remember when I went in for an allergy test and was tested for dairy.  My allergy test came back false negative.  But I can tell you that I have extreme GI distress from dairy products.  This is an intolerance to dairy, and whey for me personally.  This past week I tried some cow’s milk on the farm that I am working on this summer.  It gave me diarrhea for 2 days!!!

It is important to realize that sensitivity to certain foods may not always be caused by a food allergy, but may be the result of food intolerance. This differentiation is important since these two types of sensitivities occur as a result of two distinct physiological events. While their difference is worth briefly noting here, if you would like further detail please refer online to Food Sensitivity Q+A which gives a great overview of this subject.

A food allergy is an immune system response. It occurs when the body mistakes an ingredient in food — usually a protein — as harmful and creates a defense system (antibodies) to fight it. Food allergy symptoms develop when the antibodies are battling the “invading” food.

Food intolerance is a digestive system response rather than an immune system response. It occurs when something in a food irritates a person’s digestive system or when a person is unable to properly digest or breakdown, the food

Note:  Food allergies have become extremely complex due to emulsifiers, preservatives, binders and fillers put into foods.  Meaning allergens hide.   No need to let this discourage anyone.  This is just an information guide to heighten the awareness of how to dig deeper.



One Response to “Allergy Vs. Intolerance”

  1. MSG Intolerance | Gluten Free Blog:

    [...] -          MSG is not an allergy it is an intolerance or sensitivity (allergy’s involve an antibody response from the immune system)  (Allergy Vs. Intolerance) [...]



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