Food allergies and intolerances tend to show up in different ways, depending on the food.
A reader just asked me how my food issues crop up, so I’ll share how each food allergy/intolerance manifests itself with me (please see your own health care professional if you suspect allergies, as they may be potentially fatal). Please know this won’t be necessarily the same for you since we’re all so individual, so keep a food/allergy journal to keep track of how you feel after you eat certain things.
In general, you see a lot of what I eat is almost the same from day to day. You’ll see that I’m going with green olives, 1/4 cup mixed, plain nuts, pepperoni and about 2 ounces of cheese. Those are what I consider one of my “baseline” foods. If I eat that, it’s not only filling, but I know I’m fine. Other baseline foods: Taco Star nachos and the cottage cheese + sunflower seeds + Parmesan cheese + green olives.
To know if I’m intolerant to new foods (or if I’m trying to investigate a suspected intolerance), I keep to my baseline foods and keep amounts in check, paying close attention to how I feel after eating a meal introducing (or re-introducing) a new element. I encourage you to keep a food journal so that you can keep track of how you feel, especially when you feel unnaturally hungry, inflamed, headaches or crawling legs occur, or when your nose becomes remarkably runny and/or stuffy.
Following are the foods to which I’m pretty sure I have aversions/intolerances to or am just plain allergic.
Dairy (or cheese/moldy foods. I suspect both):
When: Within an hour of overdoing dairy/cheese. This tends to last for several hours, and sometimes carries over into the next day if I was ridiculous.
What: I tend to experience bloating and extreme hunger.
Example: Overeating the toppings on pizza, as an example, exacerbates symptoms.
Mushrooms (or moldy foods):
When: Within a couple of hours. Lasting typically until the next day.
What: Bloaty and feeling supremely hungry later. General feelings of not being at the top of my game.
Example: Some mushroom recipes I made recently and still want to share with you.
Broccoli (I suspect cruciferous veggies, but especially broccoli):
When: Within 20 minutes of consuming and lasting for hours unless I consume some added fat slightly later to stop the cravings.
What: Bloaty and hungry. After eating broccoli it makes me so hungry! It’s literally like eating candy–only candy makes me less hungry, believe it or not.
Example: I had broccoli smothered in an amazing alfredo sauce the other night. It was delicious (I love broccoli), but I was so miserable afterwards.
When: Within a couple of hours of consumption, lasting for 12-24 hours, depending on the amount ingested.
What: Sniffles, runny nose, bloating, inflammation, extreme hunger and thirst, crawling legs, irritability, feelings of not being well, IBS, inflammation.
Example: The symptoms–even for those ‘low-carb’ products–are so severe, the side effects outweigh the rewards. I might have gluten willingly 3 times per yer, but when I do, I take Claritin in advance and eat early enough in the day that hopefully by bedtime the crawling legs won’t matter.
Soy (including lecithin):
When: Within literally 5 minutes of eating soy, lasting for hours afterwards.
What: Tingling in mouth and around lips, slight throat swelling, stuffy nose, bloating and extreme hunger. Because egg-bearing chickens tend to eat soy in non-organic situations, there’s also the possibility that egg allergies could be due to chicken feed. That’s one I need to research more.
Example: I sampled a low-carb product for a company that contained lecithin (I don’t know how much, to be fair), and within 10 minutes, I had a raging allergic event. I am using more and more caution with soy.
When: Within an hour of consumption.
What: Sharp pains in my skull. Like raging, hard-core sharp pains.
Example: I had a Blizzard one night months ago, and for hours afterwards I regretted it, but it’s happened with sugars in different forms, too (cookies or cakes). Give me sugar substitutes. The real thing hurts. It’s sugar–I’ve isolated it enough to know it’s not other ingredients.
Nightshades (Potatoes, eggplant and peppers):
When: Within an hour of consumption, lasting up until the next day.
What: Bloating, stomach upset, IBS (more with potatoes), gas, inflammation, stuffy nose.
Example: The steak fries at Red Robin are crack, but after eating two helpings (I as hungry), wow. Regretted! If I have potatoes or nightshades at all, it’s in limited quantities and for the taste/texture more than to fill my stomach.
Now on to how I’ve been doing with our Mid-Year Challenge… Be sure to do your thing. I am thrilled share my progress and thoughts, but I’m not the person you should necessarily look to for dieting advice (I’m not a paid nosh-a-titian). Be sure to subscribe for updates by adding your email right (in the sidebar) or through Feedburner in the title bar up top. You can also click the tab up top that says Mid-Year Resolution for regular updates.
I ate this:
Breakfast: Sampled a couple of sweet recipes I’m trying + Cottage cheese+ olives + sunflower seeds + shredded Parmesan cheese
Lunch: A couple more bites of some things I’m recipe testing + a couple of cookies I’m testing
Dinner: 1/2 Taco Star nachos (chipless)
Notes: I wasn’t going to go to Taco Star, but I wanted to make sure they’d be open on my usual “Chips” post-TOPS weigh-in!
What I learned:
As wasteful as I know it is, sometimes I have to throw away foods that might derail me.
Case in point, the chocolate caramel toffee recipe I made last night. It. is. delicious. At the same time, it will derail me because it’s what I’d prefer to eat than the other, healthier options in the house (I kept popping into the kitchen to sample it!). So I just threw away over well over 3 pounds of candy, butter and chocolate. It was hard (oh my gosh, I hated doing it), but that’s what I’d rather do than consume all of it in a day or two and then have a weight gain or a setback in the process.
To make sure I didn’t fish it out of the garbage I even squirted it with Windex!
I’m safe, but I hate throwing away recipes I develop for the mere reason that they were too delicious to keep. Now you know why I typically only develop the savory recipes…