Speaking from personal experience, I can say that living with food allergies is difficult. However, it was more difficult when I didnt know why I was so tired, exhausted and swollen all the time. If someone had told me way back when, that I was allergic to corn, I may not have believed them. After all, people who have food allergies end up at the ER, dont they? Doesnt their face swell up or dont they go into anaphylactic shock? No way, how could I have a food allergy?
The reality is that many people are constantly living with an undetected food allergy. The allergy whittles away at their lives little by little. They are too tired to do everything they want to do. They are cranky and their relationships suffer. They may even get surgeries as a result of the allergy that range from ear, nose, and throat surgeries to weight loss surgeries, never realizing that all along, it was the food they were eating that was at the root of the problem.
Not everyone reacts the same to every food. I believe this to be one of the biggest problems in diagnosis. My son has the same allergy but most of his symptoms are focused in his sinuses while mine are more swelling and bowel related. Ive gotten hundreds of emails from others who have similar and different symptoms, all in varying degrees, but they all have one thing in common. When they quit eating the offending food or foods, their symptoms clear up.
So, how do you know if you are allergic to something? One fast way to learn is to see an allergist for an allergy test. Another way is to do an elimination diet. Symptoms related to food allergies may include body swelling, joint pain, headaches, sinus problems, extreme exhaustion, brain fog, mood swings or changes in behavior, or IBS type symptoms. If you struggle with any of these symptoms, you may want to investigate potential food allergies.
Think outside the box. Dont just investigate the top eight allergens. Many people are finding they are allergic to things like yeast, corn, rice, potatoes, and other foods that are not widely publicized. In addition to that, many are allergic to more than one food, making it difficult to adjust at times. Whatever the case may be, trust your instincts and know that you must be your own advocate. Doctors are partners in your health care needs, but ultimately, you have to live in your body, not them. Take charge of your health, you wont regret it.