The underlying cause of intestinal inflammation and immune dysregulation can often be caused by certain foods that you may have difficulty digesting or to which you may have a sensitivity or allergy. In fact, over 50 percent of the immune system is located in and around the gastrointestinal tract. Therefore, when the gastrointestinal immune system is affected by food allergens or intolerances, the systemic immune system is also impacted. In turn, chemical messengers of alarm and inflammation are released by the gastrointestinal associated immune system that enter the bloodstream and can have an effect upon other organs and systems in the body. For example, drinking milk, in susceptible individuals, may trigger the gastrointestinal immune system to release molecules that travel through the blood stream and affect the brain causing disturbances such as changes in mood and cognitive performance. Many people find that eliminating common food allergens helps decrease intestinal inflammation and improves symptoms such as fatigue and muscle pain. It is highly recommended that you eliminate the common food allergens while you and your health practitioner help establish a healthy gastrointestinal system.
This is the first step toward identifying problematic foods and this step should not be ignored. It is important to eliminate all known or suspected food intolerances. Many individual who have avoided common and suspected food intolerances have noticed a dramatic improvement in cognitive function, behavior and over health. In addition, once the “leaky gut” has healed, the avoided foods can gradually be reintroduced in an effort to identify the problematic ones without major setbacks.