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A food allergy is an immune system response to a food protein that the body mistakenly believes is harmful. When the individual eats food containing that protein (even small amounts), the immune system releases massive amounts of chemicals, triggering symptoms such as swelling of lips/face/eyes, hives or welts, tingling mouth.
A severe and sudden allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) symptoms include difficulty/noisy breathing, swelling of tongue, swelling/tightness of throat, difficulty talking and/or hoarse voice, wheeze or persistent cough, persistent dizziness or collapse, pale and floppy (young children). If left untreated, these symptoms can be fatal.
Please consult Anaphylaxis Australia Food Allergy Basics fact sheet
Delayed reactions to food may also occur. Coeliac disease is a delayed immune reaction to the gluten part of wheat. This damages the intestinal lining, resulting in abdominal bloating, discomfort, diarrhoea or constipation decreasing absorption of essential foods from the intestine resulting in anaemia, lethargy and nutritional deficiencies. These changes may be subtle and can easily be missed.
Intolerances do not involve the body’s immune system, are slower in onset and are not life threatening. After eating, some people complain of symptoms:
Natural chemicals are found in foods. These naturally occurring chemicals add flavour and smell to food. The most common ones to upset sensitive people are Amines, Salicylates and Glutamate.
dietarymenucards.com.au is not a substitute for independent professional or medical advice and you should obtain appropriate professional or medical advice relevant to your particular circumstances.
Source: the above interpretation of an allergy and intolerance was compiled from the Food Intolerance Network and Anaphylaxis Australia
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