Food intolerance can also be termed as hypersensitivity to non-allergic foods. It is a belated harmful reaction to a certain food, drink or food-preservative. Intolerance can be a consequence of the lack of certain chemicals or enzymes that are needed to assimilate the food into the body system or it could also be due to your response to some natural chemicals in it. There is always confusion between food intolerances and food-allergies. In the allergies the occurrence of IgE antibodies against foods is a must, while all other sensitivities to food can be termed intolerances.
Your intolerance to foods can exhibit various symptoms that affect the skin presenting rashes hives, dermatitis or eczema. It could alternately affect the respiratory or gastrointestinal tract either separately or in combined form showing symptoms of sinusitis, pharyngitis, asthma, nasal congestion, diarrhea, constipation or irritable bowel syndrome.
Food intolerances can broadly divided into three namely; lactose intolerance which is the result of the lack of lactase to assimilate the lactose in the milk or milk products. The Gluten intolerance is said to damage the villi in the small intestines making it extremely difficult for the body to take in water and other nutrients from the food. Then you also have the undefined intolerance that may be caused by some of the preservatives used in foods.
The lack of digestive enzymes is one of the main causes for intolerance. One of the commonest food-chemicals that cause intolerance is salicylate which is naturally present in many foods. The symptoms can sometimes last for many hours at a stretch. It can be very complicated to decipher what all products are responsible for the problem.
In recent years the introduction of intolerance-testing is becoming increasingly popular. Food intolerance testing in the US has become extremely preferred as they feel that the intolerance indications assist people in maintaining the quality and extent of life free from illnesses.