Could food allergy be to blame for your weight gain?

If you are doing everything right on your diet but still maintaining pounds, you could have a hidden food sensitivity,

Slow onset food sensitivity

Some food-related allergic responses are fact and sudden. Peanut and shellfish allergies can come on strong and even produce an immediate, life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis. These allergy attacks or immune responses more generally cause swelling around the mouth, hives, nausea and other physical discomfort. This is an IgE immune response. A food sensitivity on the other hand can result in a far less acute response creating inflammation hours or days later. As many as 60% of the population may have one of these hidden sensitivities to food, particularly to dairy.

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Different from lactose intolerance

Foods with dairy can cause unhealthy bacteria to overgrow and produce toxins that cause inflammation in the body and prevents normal digestion. This can cause weight gain. Dairy allergies are also linked to inflammation in the gut. This is different from a lactose intolerance which is the inability of the body to digest the milk protein. If you want to find out if dairy is causing your weight gain, try a modified diet.

Eliminate dairy from the diet

First, find the hidden dairy in your foods. Milk, butter, yogurt and cheese in any form will affect your body. Check the ingredients in cakes, muffins, cookies and chocolate. Dairy derivatives include why and casein. Look for these on labels. Processed meats may contain lactose, casein and caseinates which act as flavor enhancers. Breads might contain casein, whey or milk powder. Also find out if bread products are brushed with butter as they bake. Many, many energy bars contain whey protein.

Remove, repair and reboot your body

According to Dr. Mark Hyman, once you remove all the dairy from your diet, eat that way for one week. Then take a second week to repair the digestive system by eating foods with healthy bacteria found in probiotics. Find a supplement that contains both bifidobacterium and lactobacillus bacteria. A pill or powder will work. Stay away from yogurt – this is a dairy product. After a week on probiotic supplements, try introducing dairy products to your diet, one food at a time. Keep a diary and note any changes: bloating, increase in gas, cramping, fluid retention, difficulty sleeping. If you suspect an allergy, see your doctor for a test and maintain the dairy free diet. Your weight gain may be more about a food reaction than your self-control.

Source: Dr. Mark Hyman

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