Dr. Kari Young
5 Ways To Reduce Food Intolerances
Food intolerances are among the most common symptoms that I see in my new clients. It is not uncommon for someone to present with such severe food intolerances, that they can only eat 3-5 foods, and have been doing so for years! I can remember one young woman who came to me after only being able to consume 3 foods, and after just 60 days was able to increase her food list to more and more healthy foods.
A food intolerance presents as either an allergic reaction, or an adverse sensation after eating certain foods. These symptoms are a result of foods causing an inflammatory reaction in your body.
A food intolerance left unaddressed can lead to a damaged gut or a dysregulation of the immune system. Of course, this can lead to a multitude of chronic health issues. Food intolerance is a serious symptom that has a root cause, just like all health challenges do.
Food allergies cause an outright reaction, and can develop nearly immediately after consuming the food. Common foods that cause serious allergic reactions are shellfish, peanuts and dairy.
The reaction to a food allergy results in the immune system mistakenly attacking the proteins found in the food as a threat. It can take a very small amount of the food to trigger an allergic reaction, and the reaction can be quick, if not immediate.
Below are some of the most common reactions, also known as an IgE-mediated food allergy, associated with a food allergy:
Anaphylaxis, which can be life threatening
Shortness of breath
Swelling of the face, throat or mouth
Itching of the eyes, or allergic conjunctivitis
A food intolerance causes symptoms often within a few hours of consuming the problematic food. Unlike a food allergy, symptoms related to a food intolerance requires the consumption of a substantial amount of the food in order to trigger a symptom.
Common symptoms of food intolerance are :
Skin disorders, such as eczema and acne
Food intolerance itself is not life-threatening; however, inflammatory reactions due to a food intolerance can lead to a systemic problem over time if left untreated. This can lead to a food allergy, autoimmune disease, leaky gut and other serious health challenges.
It is advisable to remove foods that cause food intolerance and address the root cause in order to prevent future health challenges.
Implement an Elimination Diet
If you know which foods cause intolerance, you may consider following an elimination diet. This means that you would completely remove the list of these problematic foods from your diet for a period of time, such as for 90 days. Then you would reintroduce one food at a time so that you can determine which ones cause the intolerance. This is a great way to isolate the problem foods.
The more often you consume these inflammatory foods, the more your gut health will deteriorate over time. Removing the problem foods will allow your gut to begin to heal and recover.
Some of the most common foods that cause intolerance include:
Food additives and other toxins may also cause food intolerances, such as:
MSG (monosodium glutamate)
Toxins found in contaminated foods, such as parasites, viruses and bacteria
Improve the Production of Stomach Acid
One of the main causes of food intolerance is leaky gut, which causes food particles to permeate the digestive lining. This causes the triggering of the immune system. The immune system has a memory, which can cause an adverse inflammatory reaction to the problematic food over time, resulting in a possible development of a food allergy.
Improving the production of stomach acid is a great strategy since inflammatory foods cause a decline in stomach acid production over time. This results in sustained leaky gut, and further health issues.
Here are several strategies to improve the production of stomach acid:
Use high quality digestive enzymes
Add fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar into your drinks
Eat fermented foods
Ensure that you are always hydrated
Boost your Immune System
The prolonged negative effects of unaddressed food intolerance and leaky gut can lead to the deterioration of the overall immune system. This is due to chronic inflammation, which can lead to autoimmune disease.
The Gut is responsible for 80% of your immune system. Poor Gut - Poor Immune. Strong Gut - Strong Immune. How is your gut health?
The gut must be repaired in 3 unique phases:
Reset gut pathogen balance
Get gut diversity
Get daily sunshine
Be out in nature more
Move your body and sweat
Quality of sleep - 10pm - 2am is the most valuable time for sleep
Try infrared sauna to help the body sweat out toxins
Nasal rinses wash out the daily accumulation of pollens, dust, molds, and viruses
Nebulize to help with sinus, brain, and lungs
Enemas may be needed for some - either coffee enemas, or water enemas with add-ins
Take supportive immune-boosting supplements:
Vit D, A, E, K
Zinc with quercetin
Animal-Based Ancestral Diet
What to eat is by far the most confusing topic that I help clients navigate. There are so many opinions about whether to eat vegan, low fat, vegetarian, paleo, keto, carnivore, or any other variation. Over my 20 years of clinical experience, helping people with autoimmune and chronic disease, I can share that the absolute sickest people are those who have followed a vegan diet for a prolonged period of time.
Many doctors and dieticians advise that we cut back on meat and eat more plant based foods, including smoothies. In fact, some even describe this food category as “superfoods”, and claim that they can cure diseases and reduce chronic inflammation. In fact, nothing can be further from the truth.
Antinutrients cause nutritional deficiencies that can lead to leaky gut, such as:
Omega-6 fatty acids
A well-planned animal based ancestral food is just what your body needs to reset, heal from leaky gut, and overcome food intolerances. An animal based diet maximizes healing and provides the most nutrient-dense food on the planet.
Similarly, a high-fat, low-carb diet reduces chronic inflammation by giving your body a break from toxins and feeding your cells.
People with vitamin deficiencies such as A and D often suffer from a compromised intestinal barrier and inflammatory bowel disorders. Organ meats are extremely nutrient-dense with water- and fat-soluble nutrients, which are required for gut health. In fact, organ meats can completely heal and reverse nutrient deficiencies.
If you plan to implement an animal based diet, it is essential that the animal foods you consume are organic, pasture raised, free range, grass-fed or pastured. Consuming factory farmed animal protein will simply dump more toxins (antibiotics, hormones, etc.) into your body and may cause additional inflammation and disease.
Here are some quick facts:
3.5 ounces of beef liver provides 4,968 µg of vitamin A
Pastured lard is packed full of vitamin D
Eggs and beef provide natural glutamine, which prevent permeability of toxins, and regulate tight junctions
The collagen in bone broth helps to heal the intestinal lining, and leaky gut
Salmon roe is a fantastic source of vitamin D
Remove Chronic Gut Infections
Ultimately, people who suffer with multiple stubborn food intolerances likely have a chronic gut infection that has gone unaddressed. The most common are parasitic infections, candida, bacterial overgrowth or H-Pylori.
Chronic gut infections are extremely common, and often overlooked as simple food intolerances. A chronic gut infection is serious and can lead to autoimmune disorders or chronic disease. This is the reason that I address this first as part of opening the drainage pathways.
A chronic gut infection can be one of the root causes of any disease or symptom, and must be removed in order for the body to completely heal, systemically.