Allergies vs. Sensitivities

UNDERSTANDING ALLERGIES AND SENSITIVITIES

Allergies and sensitivities are caused by an inappropriate reaction to harmless substances.
The word "allergy" comes from the Greek allos, meaning "other." It was first used in 1906 to refer to an "altered reaction" in the body's immune system.

A "true allergy" is a reaction triggered by the immune system, however there are a vast number of symptoms or conditions caused by sensitivities that may or may not involve the immune system. With reactions involving food, a large percentage of the population believe they have allergies, yet fewer than 2% actually have true allergies. In fact, many suffer from undiagnosed food sensitivities or intolerances. The majority of patients who seek the Allergy Solutions of Indiana treatment do not have true allergies; their symptoms are likely to be caused by sensitivities with no immune involvement. Since there are few options for the treatment of sensitivities, other than avoidance, Allergy Solutions of Indiana provides a highly effective alternative. Symptoms caused by true allergies, however, also respond well to the treatment as the organs systems involved in the reaction are also addressed.

The use of the word "allergy" has become a generic term used by the public to describe allergies, sensitivities and intolerances.

True food allergies are based on exposure to a specific protein component of a food. The immune system incorrectly perceives the protein as a threat and produces antibodies in response. With repeated exposure, cells release histamine and other biochemicals in response to the allergenic food. It is these chemicals that cause the allergy symptoms. True food allergies are estimated to affect less than 2 percent of adults and 4 to 8 percent of young children and infants.

Food sensitivities are much more common, although estimates vary. Sensitivities are abnormal reactions to food or food components that do not involve the immune system, but involve the body as a whole. There are three types of food sensitivities:

 

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