Food allergies and intolerances
If eating certain types of foods accuse one or more of the following disorders: itching of the lips, tongue or palate; conjunctivitis; rash and / or hives; nausea, cramps, and / or abdominal pain, vomiting and / or diarrhea; sneezing, dry cough, asthma and wheezing-wheezing, then you may have a food allergy or intolerance. These terms are often used interchangeably superficially or confused in their meaning that we try to do some 'clarity.
The fundamental distinction, as regards the reactions caused by foods, is made between the toxic and non-toxic. The first are due to ingestion of toxic or contaminated food, the other dependent on the individual susceptibility to certain substances and can be divided into immune-mediated reactions (which give rise to food allergy) and non-immune-mediated reactions (food intolerance)
Typical examples of such reactions are poisoning mushrooms, gastroenteritis caused by bacterial toxins contained in spoiled food, the so-called scombroid reaction allergo-like reaction that can reach up to the shock caused by histamine; manifests itself in case of ingestion of fish protein, such as mackerel and tuna, battered to keep default.
Food allergy is characterized by an abnormal and exaggerated immune response to specific food proteins that are generally tolerated in normal subjects but in allergic are transposed as a threat to which the immune system becomes active, producing the called Ig E antibodies (immunoglobulin E) in an attempt to eliminate them from our bodies. In this reaction cascade they are also involved two cells of our body mast cells and basophils present mainly in the skin, respiratory and gastrointestinal system to release histamine and darkened inflammatory substances responsible for the allergic symptoms. This shows that the most frequent disorders are the responsibility of the three aforementioned organs.
In a small number of people it occurs a severe allergic reaction that can be fatal, and takes the name of anaphylaxis. This reaction may occur within a few minutes and requires immediate medical attention. Dietary proteins that most frequently cause allergic reaction in children are cow's milk, egg, wheat, soy, peanuts and other nuts; in adults they are also added fish and shellfish, as well as different types of fruit and vegetables: in practice it should be remembered that most varied food proteins can cause allergic reactions.
Recognize the food allergy and diagnose with the appropriate allergy tests (skin tests with the extract or with the fresh food and research of specific Ig E antibodies in the blood) such as food proteins are able to determine the symptoms, and therefore such foods should be avoided, may allow in children and adults in the adult, the prevention of new episodes and then the onset of symptoms sometimes very serious.
The reactions to the non-induced immunological mechanisms foods are instead classified as food intolerance and the mechanisms to provoke them may be enzymatic, pharmacological or remain unknown (idiosyncratic).
If drinking milk or eating dairy products appear nausea, diarrhea or abdominal pain, you may have deficiency of the enzyme that digests the milk (lactose intolerance). The diagnosis is performed through a test (breath test) that analyzes the air exhaled after lactose ingestion.
It can also manifest an intolerance to substances (histamine, tyramine, etc.) naturally present in some foods (eg. cheeses and wines) with headache or skin symptoms.
Celiac disease (gluten intolerance) occurs in genetically predisposed individuals with gastrointestinal and extra-intestinal manifestations. When there is clinical suspicion diagnosis is done with a blood test (detection of specific antibodies) and microscopic examination of a small sampling of intestinal tissue. The celiac disease must follow a completely gluten-free diet (found in wheat, rye, barley, spelled, spelled and triticale).
The additives are all those substances which are added to the food during processing (preservative, colorant, flavor uplifting ...).
Therefore you need to ask your medical specialist such as a gastroenterologist and allergist if you suspect of suffering from a disorder of intolerance or food allergy, thus avoiding the confusion that comes from diagnoses made using empirical methods and scientifically approved.