Does a food intolerance get better / worse with abstinence?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 26, 2013 at 11:44 PM

If you were born without a food allergy, then develop one due to a leaky gut, do those antibodies ever die down once the gut is repaired and you abstain from eating those foods long enough, or are you forever intolerant to some degree?

(I can also see it working the other way, where if you haven't had an irritant in a long time, then get spiked with it, you might react stronger than if you had a tolerance from frequent consumption.)

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3 Answers


on May 27, 2013
at 09:27 AM

We have to make a distinction here between a food allergy and an intolerance/absorption problem. The later may get better once the gut heals but the former most likely not.

See: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/food-allergy/AN01109


on May 27, 2013
at 09:22 AM

Possibly. I see it as analogous with eczema. When the skin is dry, it is leaky - like the gut. Things get through it into the body that shouldn't, and the body reacts to them, and you get eczema. When the skin is in good condition, these things can't get through

The gut may be the same - healed up gut, things can't get through to have allergic reactions too

Lactose intolerance, you probably wouldn't see a change, as this is about lacking the enzyme to digest lactore. Casein intolerance you might see a change

I used to be able to drink OK, and did so regularly. Now I don't drink so much, I get a severe allergic reaction to alcohol. The body does tolerate some antigens with regular exposure


on May 27, 2013
at 01:17 AM

This has been on my mind a lot lately, coincidentally. I'm lactose intolerant, and have been dairy free for about 3 months. I had some homemade whipped cream about a week ago and almost as soon as it hit my stomach I had the most painful stomach cramps. The cream proceeded to make pain for me as it moved its way through my digestive system, and it was not fun. It was also a much worse reaction than I have ever had before. I felt violently nauseous, whereas in the past I would just have an upset tummy and maybe a little gas.

In the past I was eating dairy relatively frequently with not so bad side effects which would only increase to being uncomfortable if I ate a large amount (2 huge scoops of ice cream, etc.). So I'm leaning towards lactose intolerance getting worse with abstinence. I realize of course this isn't related to gluten intolerance, but I thought I'd share my thoughts.

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