Are you eating right and not feeling well? Do you suffer from one or more autoimmune and/or inflammatory conditions? Have you tried an elimination diet but your symptoms still persist? Have you tried many medications but still feel less than optimal?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, we need to talk.
All chronic, long-term conditions have one thing in common- inflammation. Many people are aware that certain foods like turmeric, ginger, tuna and salmon are anti-inflammatory, but what most people do not know is that some foods are pro-inflammatory, meaning they cause inflammation (and great pain) every time you eat them. To make matters even more confusing, some anti-inflammatory foods are inflammatory in certain individuals. There are no universal anti-inflammatory or pro-inflammatory foods; they are unique to each person. What is anti-inflammatory in one individual may be pro-inflammatory in another and vice versa.
Do you suffer from…
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Celiac disease
- Other autoimmune or inflammatory conditions
Food plays a role in all of these conditions and until you identify the foods causing your inflammation, no amount of medication will help, since you're not removing the root cause of your problems. When a person has an inflammatory reaction to a food, it's called a food sensitivity.
Food sensitivities and food allergies are not the same.
Food sensitivities should not be confused with food allergies as they are different reactions that occur in the body. When it comes to allergies, eight foods account for 90% of all reactions. These foods include peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, eggs, soy, milk and wheat. Symptoms occur quickly, usually within an hour and can be fatal if not treated immediately. Food sensitivities however, are not life threatening and any food can cause a reaction. Symptoms are chronic and vague, easily masking as other conditions, making it difficult to receive a proper diagnosis. To complicate matters, it can take up to three days after eating a food before symptoms appear. It is possible to be allergic to a food but not sensitive to it, sensitive but not allergic or both allergic and sensitive. Whatever the case is, the food must be avoided.
Common symptoms of food sensitivities include brain fog; diarrhea; constipation; fatigue; nasal congestion; joint pain and stiffness; acid reflux; dry, itchy skin; headaches, bloating and many others. Since these symptoms can be attributed to many factors like lack of sleep, lack of fiber, lack of hydration, etc..., the foods you're eating are never considered the problem. It is not uncommon to suffer for many years before it is discovered you have food sensitivities. Treating the symptoms without treating the cause does little to alleviate your symptoms (but you already knew that by this point). Since non-dietetic practitioners are not trained in nutrition, they never make the connection that food is triggering an inflammatory response. It is easy to assume that if you're not allergic to a food, there's no need to avoid it. That couldn't be further from the truth! Most inflammatory reactions are caused by the foods you eat every day. Let that sink in a minute.
Why elimination diets don’t work.
Typical elimination diets are ineffective because they are too general and fail to take into consideration what’s going on in your body. We are all biochemically different and we each require an individualized diet. What’s worked for someone you know may not work for you.
Elimination diets work backwards. You take foods out of the diet without knowing if you're actually removing the culprits. The issue is compounded when you react to multiple foods, which is extremely common, so taking out one reactive food while (unknowingly) keeping another reactive food in the diet yields less than favorable results. This is not only frustrating, but also a waste of time.
IgG testing does not work.
Some practitioners offer something called IgG testing, which tests the response of IgG antibodies to food proteins. The thinking is that high levels of IgG represent a sensitivity to the food being tested, but that isn't always true. In fact, high levels of IgG can simply mean you've had a repeated exposure to that food, but it doesn't determine whether or not that exposure was pro- or anti-inflammatory. In addition, T cells play a role in many inflammatory conditions like Irritable Bowel Syndrome and migraines, so by looking at IgG antibodies only, you're missing an entire cell-mediated pathway! This article discusses the link between IBS and T cells and this article discusses why IgG testing is not valid as a diagnostic tool for food sensitivities.
Identifying and removing your offending foods is the only way to reduce or eliminate your symptoms.
Identifying your food sensitivities is as easy as a simple blood test. Once we've identified the foods that are causing your symptoms, we then remove them from your diet and create a protocol to introduce your safe, non-inflammatory foods. This may require you to try foods you’ve never eaten before. Scary, but exciting at the same time! By following this protocol, your gut heals, allowing your symptoms to subside (about 80% of the immune system is located in the gut). Most individuals see improvement within two weeks but others may take longer.
Once you’ve stabilized, the next step is to replete nutrient deficiencies.
I offer three packages depending on your needs. A 45-minute initial assessment is required before purchasing any package to ensure you're a good fit for the program. Prices include the cost of the blood test but do not include the cost of the blood draw. Click here to schedule your assessment.
Essential Package: (1) 60-min consultation and (2) 30-min follow-ups
Premier Package: (1) 60-min consultation and (2) 30-min follow-ups with e-mail support between sessions
Elite Package: (1) 60-min consultation and (4) 30-min follow-ups with e-mail support between sessions
If any of these packages seem like a good fit for you or to schedule a free 15-minute call, contact me.
*Individual results will vary
Note: Due to legal restrictions, residents of New York State must go out-of-state for the blood draw. If you're an international client, contact me for information.