Do You Have a Food Allergy or a Food Intolerance?

When you go out to eat, it is vital to let your server know if you suffer from any food allergies or intolerances. Although the two conditions are similar, one is much more serious than the other, and can result in permanent injuries or even death. If you suspect that you have allergies or intolerances to certain foods, but you have not seen a medical professional for a diagnosis, it is strongly encouraged to do so as soon as possible for your own protection.

In the meantime, refrain from any foods that you think might cause your digestive or physical complications. It will also help to prepare for your appointment by learning the difference between a food allergy and a food intolerance, since so many people use the terms interchangeably, and thus, incorrectly.

Continue reading to learn the difference between a food allergy and a food intolerance. This knowledge will also help you more accurately notify servers at restaurants, as well as family and friends at home dinners, how to properly prepare your food for your protection.

Downtown Indianapolis Eatery
Downtown Indianapolis Eatery 317-822-5070

Food Allergies

A food allergy is perceived as a toxin in a person’s body. It triggers an exaggerated immune system response that affects multiple organ systems in an attempt to alert the body of the toxin. This can trigger additional physiological responses that overact and cause serious or fatal symptoms.

Food allergies are serious because some can lead to severe injuries or death. Even microscopic particles of food can cause an allergic reaction, even a fatal one. The most common food allergies include peanuts, shellfish, cow’s milk, soy products, wheat, hen’s eggs, and tree nuts like almonds, Brazilian nuts, hazelnuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts. These are called the “big 8” in the culinary world, and are the most familiar food allergies known to the general public.

Food Allergy Symptoms:

⇾ Hives
⇾ Red Skin
⇾ Swelling (face, eyes, cheeks, hands, feet, etc.)
⇾ Itching
⇾ Vomiting
⇾ Diarrhea
⇾ Anaphylaxis
⇾ Respiratory Symptoms

Food Intolerance

In contrast to food allergies that affect the immune system, food intolerances affect the body’s digestive system. When a person consumes food they are intolerant to, the digestive system has trouble breaking it down. This can be caused by a number of reasons, primarily a lack of essential enzymes, sensitivity to food additives, and reactions to naturally-occurring chemical in food (i.e. mycotoxins).

Food intolerances are not life-threatening, but they can cause major discomfort and illness. In minor cases of food intolerance, people can consume small amounts without experiencing any digestive issues. The most common intolerances include glucose, lactose, Tyramine, food preservatives, and food additives.

Food Intolerance Symptoms:

⇾ Flatulence
⇾ Diarrhea
⇾ Bloating
⇾ Cramping
⇾ Fluid Retention
⇾ Abdominal Distention
⇾ Hives
⇾ Swelling
⇾ Migraines
⇾ Wheezing
⇾ Difficulty Breathing

A Downtown Indianapolis Pub & Eatery You Can Trust

Contact English Ivy’s at 317-822-5070 to learn all about our weekly food and drink specials in Downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. We also serve a full lunch, dinner, and late night menu, and even brunch on weekends! From iced tea cocktails and mimosas, to beer, wine, and everything in between, we have the refreshing summertime cocktails you crave on a hot day. With neighborhood prices and the nicest service around, you will enjoy every minute you spend at our Downtown Indianapolis bar and restaurant!

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