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What is Food Intolerance and Sensitivity?

Although the word “Allergy” is commonly used to describe any unpleasant reaction to a drug, food, insect sting or chemical, this can be misleading. The word should only really be used to describe a reaction produced when the body meets a normally harmless substance, which has been “remembered” from a previous exposure and subsequently produces the “IgE” antibody.

“Sensitivity” is a reaction to a substance, which is an exaggeration of a normal side effect produced by that substance. For example, reliever inhalers used in asthma, if given at too high a dose in a particular individual may cause them to “shake”.

“Intolerance” happens when unpleasant symptoms occur after eating a substance which your body cannot handle because the digestive system does not produce sufficient quantities of a particular enzyme/chemical, which is needed to break down the food and aid digestion.

The causes of symptoms need to be correctly diagnosed so that the management and treatment for either allergy, sensitivity or intolerance can be appropriately taken.

VIDEO: Food Intolerance vs Food Allergy


Gluten Free Bread recipe

  • Mix together 500g Gluten Free White Bread Flour, 1tsp Salt, 7g dry yeast & 2tbsp caster sugar
  • Add 350ml milk, 75g melted butter, 2 eggs (beaten) and 1tsp vinegar
  • Place mixture in oiled 2lb loaf tin, cover with oiled cling film and leave in a warm place to rise for about 45 minutes until the mixture has risen about 3cm.
  • Bake for 45 minutes at 200 (180 fan/Gas Mark 6).

When ready, the loaf should sound hollow.