You might not immediately think that food allergies could affect your weight loss efforts. However, here, we’re going to look at how they have a great impact than you might think. This is how food allergies can slow weight loss, and what you can do to address it.
First, we need to break down these two terms. Both can affect your weight loss but in different ways. Firstly, food allergies are an immunologic response. The body sends the immune system to fight invading viruses, bacteria, and other harmful presences. However, the immune system can sometimes confuse relatively harmless things for threats. We identify these as allergens, and the body releases biochemicals to fend them off. These chemicals then cause reactions like rashes, hives, swellings, and (in the most severe cases) anaphylactic shock.
Food sensitivities, on the other hand, happen as a digestive response. For some people, their digestive systems may have trouble processing certain foods. These are typically proteins that can be found in things like eggs, milk, wheat, or soy. Lactose intolerance and non-celiac gluten sensitivity are two common types. Eating these foods can then cause discomfort, bloating, and stomach aches.
Though food allergies present fairly quickly within the contact, food sensitivities can take longer to show. Sometimes, they can take as long as two or three days.
Both food allergies and sensitivities can have quite an impact on your weight loss efforts. They don’t directly cause weight loss, but some of the symptoms can indirectly affect it. One of the symptoms of an allergic reaction to food is inflammation, for instance. What’s more, allergic reactions can contribute to chronic inflammation, which is also closely linked to weight gain.
Inflammation from any cause, be it food, bacteria, or otherwise, can lead to insulin resistance. People with insulin resistance have higher levels of insulin. One of insulin’s roles is to act as a fat-storage hormone. In fact, belly fat is often primarily caused by high insulin levels. Therefore, if you have food allergies, you are more likely to experience inflammation. The more inflammation, the higher your insulin levels are likely to be. The higher your insulin levels, the more your body holds onto fat. In short, allergies can lead to higher levels of fat retention.
Food sensitivities, on the other hand, can make you feel uncomfortable and low-energy for days after. This can affect both your ability to stay active to maintain your weight as well as your diet. If you don’t eat to a routine, then your metabolism can start to slow, making it harder to lose weight.
If you experience any adverse conditions after eating certain foods, it may be an allergy or sensitivity. If the symptoms come immediately after, it’s likely to be an allergy. Otherwise, it’s more likely to be a sensitivity. Whatever the case, both can slow down weight loss, so they are worth addressing.
Although the answer will vary for every individual, there are common culprits that cause food allergies and sensitivities. Here are some of the foods that might be to look at if you’re experiencing the symptoms mentioned:
An allergy test from your doctor can quickly highlight which foods you are allergic to. This is done via a skin prick test. This test involves using a sample of the food to see if a reaction is caused.
Food intolerances can take more time to identify. If you think you may have one, then you might try what is called an elimination diet. This involves taking one of the foods you ate before symptoms presented and eliminating it from your diet. Meanwhile, you continue eating the other foods you had. If it was the cause, the symptoms should cease in three days. If it was not the cause, then you try eliminating another food, instead.
If you have a food allergy, getting it diagnosed as quickly as possible is highly recommended. If the symptoms are that of food intolerance, then you can discern it yourself with an elimination diet. Either way, finding your trigger foods and cutting them out of your diet can prevent the symptoms. Since the symptoms are often what leads to the trouble with losing weight, this can address that issue.
You can make it easier to cut trigger foods from your life with a renewed focus on a healthy diet. This way, you will be able to further aid your weight loss even more.
Food allergies and sensitivities are just two things that slow your weight loss. A host of genetic factors, conditions, and chronic health issues can also affect it. To that end, you might want to make it a fair fight by getting some help with your weight loss.
The Chicago Weight Loss & Wellness Clinics offers a wide range of medical weight loss solutions. Here are just a few examples:
The Chicago Weight Loss Clinic helps people obtain their desired and healthy body shape with medical weight loss treatments. Aside from a variety of in-clinic approaches, we also recommend a closer look at the factors that affect weight. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with the team if you have any questions about medical weight loss solutions. We’re here to help find the plan that works best for you.
Dr. Anand Thakkar is a licensed Internal Medicine physician. He is Board Certified in Anti-Aging & Regenerative Medicine. He has been a member of the teaching faculty for students at Chicago Medical School and has been featured on ABC, FOX, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, and Forbes as a recognized authority in wellness, fitness & nutrition, weight loss, anti-aging, hormones & metabolic medicine, holistic medicine, lifestyle coaching and women’s & men’s health. His mission is to help people become the healthiest versions of themselves using movement, nutrition, and a whole-body approach to medical care.
This blog is for informational purposes only. Do not make any major changes to your lifestyle, diet, or exercise without the supervision of a licensed medical professional.