What exactly is a Food Intolerance?

Hmm…… you keep hearing and reading about food intolerances…..but what are they?
Why does everyone else suffer from this but not you?

Many of us feel these symptoms but just attribute it to being a normal part of life. Gassy, bloating, moody, dry skin, bathroom issues….this is just the ‘normal’ way to feel right?


Many people say they are “allergic” to foods when they are actually intolerant. Food intolerances usually occur when the gut reacts poorly to a specific food or ingredient used in food preparation.  Intolerances can result from the absence of an enzyme needed to fully digest a food, such as with lactose intolerance.

Food intolerances are becoming much more prevalent for several reasons. Some of the leading theories include that we have become ‘too hygienic of a society’ and our immune systems are going to a more allergic state. Starting at birth, Doctor’s seem to want to take more control and c-section deliveries are on the rise leading to the baby skipping the layer of bacteria from the birthing canal that protects their body. Next, kids are not allowed to play outside as much as they used to and are encouraged to wash hands and sanitize several times a day. No one ever died from playing in the mud! There are good bacteria and harmful bacteria but we are not allowing the body to learn and work to defend itself, and when we use hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial things all day every day, we are also killing our own defense mechanism.

Secondly, we are eating WAY too much processed foods. When we overly process foods, we are stripping them of many of their own nutrients, but also changing their molecular compound in which the body then does not recognize and therefor does not know what to do with the food. White bread for example- wheat is sprayed with chemicals right before harvest which we then consume, but it is also so processed most nutrients are stripped from the bread. When you see the word ‘enriched’ it means synthetic vitamins/minerals are added BACK into the bread but the body does not break this food down as it would if it was in its original state.

Here is a quick reference guide if you suspect you may have food intolerances. Use this checklist each day for three to seven days and track which foods may be causing your symptoms listed below.

Unable to stay awake
Unable to stay asleep
Not feeling rested after sleep

Stomach ache
Undigested food in stool

Pink bumps or spots
Dry hair, skin, or nails

Sugar cravings
Fat cravings
Need for caffeine
Craving minerals from non-food
items (like chalk, dirt, or clay)

Muscle aches or pains
Joint aches or pains
Tendon aches or pains
Ligament aches or pains

Mood swings
Low stress tolerance
Noticeable increase in anxiety

Reduced energy levels
Afternoon energy dips

Headache (from mild to migraine)
Dizzy or lightheaded
Phlegm, runny nose, or postnasal drip
Coughing or constant need to clear throat
Itchy eyes, mouth, or ears

Call me for a free phone consultation on how to naturally alleviate these symptoms!
Belinda Rodgers,RHN


*Symptom Checklist from Sarah Ballantyne’s, The Paleo Approach

2 thoughts on “What exactly is a Food Intolerance?”

Leave a Reply