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Food Allergies            

Do you know what causes food allergies? Reactions occur when the immune system overreacts to certain proteins in food. "True food allergies affect as many as seven percent of children and about two percent of adults," says S. Allan Bock of the National Jewish Medical and Research Center in Denver.

There are more than 200 food ingredients that can provoke an allergic reaction, but the main food allergies creating the vast majority of reactions are caused by the "big eight" offenders: nuts (like walnuts and almonds); peanuts (they're legumes, not nuts); milk; eggs; fish; shellfish; soybeans; and wheat. (If you notice, most of these foods would appear on a list of foods good for you as a dieter.) Typical symptoms include nausea, skin rash, nasal congestion, hives, and wheezing.

Fortunately, most children outgrow their food allergies by the time they're teenagers, but some allergies -- particularly to peanuts, nuts, and seafood -- rarely disappear. These allergies require lifelong vigilance and unfortunately, you can develop new allergies at any time.

Many people have food allergies and don't suspect it.   Common food allergies have been thought to create various health problems including autism. 

Most any food, especially those eaten on an every day basis, can cause an allergic response that produces arthritic symptoms. Highly acidic foods have been associated with increase in arthritis symptoms.  

Saturated fats found in meat, dairy and friend foods, as well as alcohol and aspirin, produce prosaglandin which suppresses the immune system, causing inflammation and pain.   Pork is one of the worse offenders.   Carbonated drinks are high in phosphates which change the mineral balance in the body. See Soda

Do you have an allergy?

If you suspect that you are allergic to a certain food, a simple way to test is be recording your pulse rate after consuming the food in question to see if you have an allergic reaction. 

Use a watch with a second hand.  Sit down and relax for a few minutes to bring your pulse to a resting rate.   When relaxed, take your pulse at the wrist.  Count the number of beats in a sixty-second period.  

After taking your pulse, consume the food that you suspect you may have an allergy to. Wait twenty minutes and take your pulse again.  If your pulse rate has increased more than 10 beats a minute, eliminate the food from your diet for a month and then retest yourself.  

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