Food Allergies – Why You Get Them and How to Control Them

There are several different types of allergies including food and airborne allergies, and though they are increasing worldwide there is a lot we still don’t know about them. We do know that an allergic reaction is triggered when the immune system mistakenly identifies an allergen as harmful. An allergen is a substance like mold, pollen or some substance in food that upon entering our body causes our immune system to release certain chemicals to attack the invader.

Allergy symptoms can cause naval passages to close, eyes and nose to water, skin to develop rashes and also cause problems in the digestive system. They can range from mild to very severe, and can also be life-threatening. It is always been thought that allergies are an issue that begins in childhood and stays with us into our adult years, but that’s not always the case.

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There are adult-onset allergies that can hit at any time, and this too is unclear why. But it is interesting to note that most of these allergies that develop in our adult years are in our twenties through forties rather than in later years. It is thought that when we enter our later years are immune system actually weakens, and as a result the attack on the foreign invader also weakens. But this is yet only theory, as again the experts don’t really know for sure.

One theory states that food allergies are on the increase because our food has less contamination than years ago. This cleaner food has fewer bacteria, making our food safer from contamination. But that also means that our immune system hasn’t had to do enough, so when it finally does get something foreign it tends to overreact to the allergens. Then with the increase of pesticides in our food production system and genetically engineered foods our immune system becomes overwhelmed. In other words the experts don’t really know so there is a lot of guessing going on.

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Food allergies are in fact the most dangerous and they must be taken very seriously. This should not be confused with food intolerance, which is an entirely different subject. But certainly knowing foods that set off allergic reactions and avoiding those foods will relieve a person’s system of a lot of stress. Likewise it would probably not be wise to just leave it at that.

Understanding the necessity to maintain a healthy gut flora is certainly going to help in meeting any challenges for overall health, and this certainly includes our immune system. Overuse of antibiotics, high consumption of unhealthy fats and anything that kills the healthy bacteria that fights disease are things that will cause havoc with our gut flora. This in turn makes us susceptible to outside attack.

Processed foods, chlorinated tap water, grains, sugar and agricultural herbicides are all things we consume on a regular basis that kill these important gut bacteria. Even though there is still a lot we still must learn about the causes of allergies, we do know the importance healthy gut flora has in staving off food allergies.