What causes food allergies to occur?

Food allergies are faulty immune system reactions that are triggered by specific foods. They differ from food intolerance such as lactose intolerance, because those reactions, though bothersome, do not involve the immune system. If you have a food allergy, certain foods are recognized by the immune system as being threatening to your body. As a result, an immune reaction is initiated that can cause handful of symptoms, some of which may be life-threatening.

What symptoms are associated with food allergies?

Food allergies are associated with symptoms such as:

  • hives
  • tingling or itching in the throat, mouth or lips
  • swelling in the lips, tongue, throat or face
  • wheezing or trouble breathing
  • nasal congestion
  • digestive system issues such as diarrhea, cramping or vomiting
  • dizziness

Severe reactions may cause anaphylaxis, a reaction which can impair breathing, cause seizures and unconsciousness, and even result in death. Reactions can occur within a few seconds of eating a food to several hours afterward, and they may persist for several hours or more.

How are they treated?

Like any allergy, the first step in treating food allergies is identifying the food source that causes the allergic reaction, and then avoiding it whenever possible. When allergic symptoms do occur, minor reactions may be treated using over-the-counter or prescription medications aimed at reducing symptoms like hives or itching. Contact Complexions MD to set up your food allergy testing appointment today!

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