Food allergies are mostly just minor and irritating, but they can also be life threatening and as such need to be taken very seriously.
Because symptoms often occur in isolation and sometimes disappear quickly, it can be hard to identify food allergies.
Some allergies will actually progress from mild to severe over time, so don’t make the mistake of thinking your allergy will always remain at a constant level of intensity or seriousness.
In order to get a proper diagnosis of a food allergy you will need to talk to your doctor and may need to have some tests carried out.
But there are signs to look out for of your own accord that could be a starting point and indicate whether or not you have an allergy.
Some of the most common foods to cause allergies are nuts, seafood, dairy, soy and wheat.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the ways you can identify food allergies yourself.
Do you get a skin reaction after eating (or even handling) certain foods? Hives, rashes and eczema are all common skin reactions from food allergies. On the mild end of the scale you may just get a small itch or rash, and at the extreme end it could spread and become very uncomfortable and unsightly.
Do you get skin swelling? This will normally be mild but could potentially be a very serious problem. If swelling spreads to the throat it can affect your breathing.
Is there pain or discomfort in your abdomen? Those with allergies to gluten and dairy products will often some across nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
Do you get symptoms similar to a common cold? Sometimes food allergy symptoms will in fact be very similar to the common cold. Sneezing, coughing and runny noses are common. The giveaway is when these symptoms do not respond to cold and flu medications.
Try keeping a food journal for a while. Write down every meal you eat for a month, and along the way note down the times you feel good or bad after eating. List your symptoms in detail. This way, you may be able to discover an allergy in consultation with your doctor.