I have pretty much suffered from allergies my entire life, to the point where chronically being stuffed up, having sinus headaches, and a sinus and ear infections constantly were status quo. I once went in for allergy testing (not food allergens, but everything else) and they were astounded by my allergic reactions--basically I was supposedly highly allergic to every single allergen they tested. That led to me taking 3 different allergy shots a week, which only sort of helped. Anyway, fast forward to the present and I've been maintaining a fairly strict Paleo-ish diet since January. Pick your flavor of Paleo, but mine is basically the standard avoidance of all grains, avoidance of all processed anything, avoidance of extra sugar, fruits minimized to one serving of berries or maybe one piece of other fruit per day (usually citrus or half a banana), and then heavy on the beef, eggs, coconut, butter, green veggies, macademias, avocados, some cream w/my coffee, and the occasional serving of walnuts, almonds and sweet potato/yams. So since getting my diet in order, my allergies aren't completely gone, but I'm not stuffed up all day long any more, not having to constantly use corticosteroid nasal sprays, not popping claritins, etc. Improvement, big surprise, right?
While my chronic allergy symptoms are largely resolving, I'm finding that I get really bad acute episodes now that seem to coincide with me not eating as cleanly as possible--e.g. when I eat out. After a month of clean eating, I decided to have a cheat meal, have some hot wings and beers and watch a basketball game at a bar. Get home, and an hour later, nose is running like a fire hydrant for a couple of hours. Most recently, today, I was out and was starving and didn't want to IF-it all the way back home, so I figured I could manage to eat at Chipotle without harming myself too much. So steak salad (no dressing, obviously), gauc, hot salsa, and then fajita veggies and out of old habits, the corn salsa too. Eat that, and, an hour-ish or so later, some reflux (another problem that had gone away since my dietary change) and, the copious snot production.
My first instinct in these situations is to question the causality: yes I ate some junk food, but my symptoms could be coincident w/the junk food. Humans are really good at attributing cause to correlations. That said, I'm wondering if anyone else has any anecdotal evidence that they're especially sensitive to foods since cleaning up their diet. I pretty much don't have any of these rapid onset allergies when I prepare my own food (with the recent exception of getting them after making some grass fed ground beef coconut curry with copious amounts of chilis, lemongrass and garlic...and I attribute that probably to the Thai chilis). But the once every other week or so I wind up eating something I haven't prepared, like clockwork, it seems like I get the runny nose, and other allergy symptoms. So, am I crazy, or do you just start getting hyper-sensitive to food allergies once you've mostly eliminated allergens from your diet?
asked byRG73 (3184)
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on March 13, 2011
at 05:37 AM
Now that you have discovered that your long term allergies stem from eating neolithic foods, you are going to have to accept that you can't have any cheat meals and not have a nose full of snot. You have always been hypersensitive to neolithic foods....which your allergy reactions were telling you before you cleaned up your diet. You are going to have to accept you cannot eat where you do not have control over your food...ie...eating out
Your body is telling you that it wants to expell the insult you have foisted upon it. Don't insult your body and it won't insult you with a runny nose.
Dr Art Ayers at http://coolinginflammation.blogspot.com/ talks a lot about healing the gut with inulin foods such as jicama, jeruselam artichokes, regular artichokes, chicory, burdock root that ferment in the gut and heal the gut. Look around his site as he thinks allergies are the result of gut dysbiosis.
Good luck. If you follow Dr Ayers, read everything he has written, there is a chance that you might cure your last bit of allergy symptoms.
on March 13, 2011
at 06:26 AM
I cannot eat any grains - wheat, corn, soy, or rice. If I do, I have very similar reactions to those that you described. My reactions are on a sliding scale, but I can pretty much expect a sinus infection from corn/soy (my throat almost closes up completely from soy) - and a total-body systemic reaction from wheat to where it feels like I have flu for several days and I am pretty much only good for keeping my bed and my pillow company. Rice is the least awful but it still results in a scratchy throat and drippy sinuses for a whole day. I have found that the only way not to have my reactions is by perfectly clean eating. It is really hard to maintain that lifestyle but every time I cheat, I am sick for several days and it is never worth the "cheat" in the end. I had a spoonful of cake batter on Thursday night (was baking a cake for a birthday at work) and was achy, sore, and sick to my stomach all of Friday and part of today. It sounds like you have a severe form of Celiac (I do) that includes sensitivities to all grains. The only cure I have found is total avoidance. <3
on March 13, 2011
at 03:38 AM
I was always sickly and skinny with terrible pain tolerance and acne when I was younger. I got into paleo and all of that has seemed to resolve itself, however I notice that I really have to watch what I eat. I can usually tell what aggravates the auto-immune response by whether or not I get pimples (which are not inflamed like they used to be, thankfully) and if it's worse then the subtle sensations in the gut (or in the case of wheat...) I tried some white rice a while back and it made me bloaty. I can't eat grainfed meat due to the lectins. Dairy is out of the question although if I got pastured butter I would give it a shot, and I can only seem to tolerate the best of the best eggs. Nightshades are out (my potatoes!) and avocados, nuts (although soaked and toasted macadamias seem all right unless I eat a lot). Raw coconut seems to be a problem although any form of prepared coconut is fine, awesome even.
However I find that when I eat gelatin, lots of coconut, inulin fiber and other gut-health promoting foods I have more tolerance and can get away with more. Still, I'm happiest on the minimally gut-irritating diet. Then again I'm only a couple of weeks into re-tweaking my gut so we shall see how it goes. Positive so far.
What you could do is just do meat, fish, gelatin, veggies, fruit, and properly prepared coconut products for a week and see how it goes. I know that sounds terrible but at least then you will know and be able to make an informed choice.
on March 01, 2015
at 10:13 AM
I used to eat Chipotle a lot but started noticing a mucous build up in my throat everytime I would eat there. I get the veggie bowl so thought this was safe. Thats with rice. I gave it a rest for 6 months but decided to have some today. Same thing happened and had to clear my throat all through the night. I'm trying to eat clean since I've had issues with meat allergies and gluten. More research I guess on eating clean. What a hassle. Why so much stuff in the food? What can you eat?
on July 30, 2012
at 11:10 AM
For me it's been a problem with corn oil or Canola oil. During my clean eating, I only use EVOO or coconut oil for cooking or pan frying. But then the weekend comes around... I wanna cheat... And how do I do that? By eating french fries (or any other fried food, for that matter) fried in corn or canola oil and I kid you not, my stomach is up in flames and knots! It is the worst feeling ever and I end up really sick for around two days straight! I really thought it was just me or just a coincidence but it happened two timeels this summer and I vowed never to eat foods fried in any of those oils again!