When you are trying to figure out whether have an allergy to a specific type of food, you may only think about severe reactions, such as swelling or anaphylaxis. However, there are certain subtle signs that you are allergic to a particular food that you may dismiss as something else.
Upset Stomach After Eating
One sign of a food allergy that is often overlooked and dismissed as food poisoning or a simple episode of gas is an upset stomach. However, if you often find that you feel nauseous or gassy after eating the same food or have diarrhea shortly after, your body may be trying to tell you something.
If you eat a food that your body sees as an allergen and a threat, chemicals are released into your stomach to try to get rid of the offending substance. While these chemicals are meant to protect you from the food allergen, their excessive production can irritate the lining of your gastrointestinal tract, creating the unpleasant symptoms.
To determine whether or not these symptoms are because of a food allergy, keep track of what you eat and how you feel afterward in a notebook. If you start noticing a pattern, show your notes to your doctor so they can help narrow down the cause.
Itchy, Watery Eyes
Another subtle sign that you are allergic to a specific food is the presence of itchy, watery eyes. The same histamines that cause symptoms when you are exposed to exterior allergens like ragweed pollen are released when you eat a food to which you are allergic. Even though the food does not come into direct contact with your eyes, the chemicals produced by the reaction circulate throughout your bloodstream.
Because there is an excessive amount of histamines in your blood, they can cause symptoms in other areas of your body. Since the histamines signal to the body that there is a harmful substance, your body tries to get rid of the invading material by flushing it out any way possible, sometimes resulting in watery eyes.
However, if you have seasonal allergies, you may have trouble differentiating between them and a food allergy. If you suspect that your watery eyes may be caused by eating strawberries or nuts, pay attention to your symptoms right after consuming the suspect food. If you notice an uptick in your symptoms, you may have an allergy to the food.
If you start experiencing any of the above or other symptoms after eating specific foods, you should have yourself checked out before the condition escalates. Make an appointment with your doctor so they can test you for food allergies and discuss any treatment options available to you. You can also visit sites like http://www.oakbrookallergists.com to learn more.