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Showing posts from February, 2014

Food: When is it an Allergy and When is it a Sensitivity?

There is MUCH controversy in the medical field about allergies and sensitivities to foods. Some doctors feel that there is a clear distinction between an intolerance to food and an allergy. Others have used the two terms as a unified definition.

An allergy, to me, is defined as having a severe reaction almost immediately after coming into contact with something. For instance, I'm allergic to the drug penicillin because I go into anaphylaxis within the first minute of consuming it. My entire body, not just my throat, will swell up. I had this reaction at the age of 3 so if I were to try it now, I could possible die within seconds. I have a similar reaction to blue cheese, a component of penicillin.

A sensitivity is a much broader term to me. A sensitivity could be an upset stomach a couple of hours after eating dairy or red meat. Or a headache from drinking a glass of red wine. But again, I only consider these a sensitivity if they happen while digestion is occurring.

Some doctors …