Food Sensitivities Make You Fat and Sick

Food sensitivities affect 75% of the population, having a profound impact on their health and weight. A common scenario is an adult with a food sensitivity to gluten or dairy.

Their symptoms are vague (constipation, headache, weight gain) and their exposure is frequent (breakfast, lunch, and dinner), so the connection is never made. Over years the hidden sensitivity takes a toll on the immune system. The result of an overworked immune system is everything from weight gain to a bad inflammatory response, which can lead to numerous health conditions.

What is a Food Sensitivity?

A food sensitivity, also called a food intolerance, is caused by an inability to digest a food and occurs in the digestive tract and not the bloodstream, like a food allergy. Symptoms are “delayed onset”, where symptoms do not appear for hours or even days. Food sensitivities are not fixed, and can come and go during the course of one’s life.

Food allergies differ from food sensitivities, though the two terms are commonly used interchangeably. Think food allergy and you might conjure the worst-case scenario, like a child going into anaphylactic shock after exposure to peanuts — something to which he’ll be allergic for life.

Gluten intolerance has characteristics of both food intolerances and food allergies, as it causes a reaction in the gut and the immune system.

Strangely, people typically crave foods to which they are sensitive or allergic. Some researchers suggest that our bodies can become addicted to the chemical messengers, such as histamine or cortisol, which are secreted by immune cells in response to allergens in the body. The body may experience a soothing response from the presence of the chemical messengers, increasing the desire to eat more of that food.

Note that food sensitivities and allergies can change every year. Just because you’re diagnosed with a food sensitivity or allergy one year does not mean it will hold true for the rest of your life. Typically, when people heal their gut, many food sensitivities disappear.

Common Food Sensitivities

These are the top foods to which people are sensitive. Note, the list for top food allergens is different!

  • GMO, genetically modified, foods.
  • Gluten (in wheat, rye, barley, and some oats).
  • Dairy
  • Corn
  • Eggs
  • Soy
  • Tree nuts (such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, and chestnuts)
  • Nightshades are a family of vegetables that include potatoes (except sweet potatoes and yams), tomatoes, peppers (green, red, yellow, orange, jalapeno, chili, and pimentos), eggplant, tobacco, spices (from peppers like cayenne, chili, red pepper, curry mixes, paprika)
  • Citrus
  • Yeast (baker’s, brewer’s yeast, and fermented products like vinegar)

Causes of Food Sensitivities

People suffer from food sensitivities for the following reasons:

  • Too much of one food. You can become sensitive to any food you eat too often. Many people eat a relatively small number of foods several times a day. For example, wheat, a common food sensitivity, is found in breakfast cereals, the bread used to make a sandwich at lunchtime, and the spaghetti eaten at dinnertime. Also, wheat is a thickening agent used in food processing, so it is a common hidden ingredient in many processed foods. Evolutionarily, cave men ate a huge variety of foods. Our bodies don’t know how to deal with eating a lot of the same foods.
  • Leaky gut syndrome. The digestive tract plays a vital role in preventing illness and disease by providing an impenetrable barrier. When the lining of the gut is inflamed from a food sensitivity, small fissures open between the tightly woven cells making up the gut walls. A condition coined “leaky gut syndrome” develops. With leaky gut syndrome, partially digested dietary protein can cross the intestinal barrier into the bloodstream. These large protein molecules can cause an allergic response, producing symptoms directly in the intestines or throughout the body. Additionally, hundreds of yeast and bacteria are released from the gut into the bloodstream where they set up infection anywhere, including muscles, joints, bones, teeth roots, coronary arteries, or even the brain. The early introduction of solid foods to infants before six months of age contributes to leaky gut syndrome and subsequent food allergies and sensitivities.
  • Deficiency of Probiotics. One of the causes of leaky gut is an absence of probiotics or ‘friendly’ bacteria in the intestines. The friendly bacteria help maintain the health of the intestines by producing fuel for intestinal cells and killing bad bacteria. Parasitic infections, treatment with antibiotics and other toxic pharmaceuticals, stress, poor diet (sugar and flour), smoking, alcohol, excessive hygiene, candida overgrowth and bottle-feeding your baby can disrupt the proper balance of friendly bacteria to bad bacteria.
  • Over-worked immune system. Constant stress, exposure to air and water pollution, and pesticides and chemicals in our food puts a strain on our immune system, making it less able to respond appropriately to the antigens in food.
  • Genetics. Food allergies and intolerances seem to be hereditary. Research indicates that if both parents have allergies, their children have a sixty-seven percent chance of developing food allergies. When only one parent is allergic, the child has a 33% chance of developing food allergies. Specifically, a person may inherit a deficiency of an enzyme like lactase, the enzyme that digests dairy. With nightshade sensitivities, there are ten genetic variants for susceptibility, not all individuals are affected equally or at all. A similar case can be made for other food sensitivities. Genetic variations predict the severity of your sensitivity.

Symptoms of Food Sensitivities

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Gas
  • Bloating
  • Stomach ache
  • Acid Reflux/GERD
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Blood in the stool
  • Chronic pain/Arthritis
  • Dark circles under the eyes
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Eczema/Psoriasis/Rashes/Hives
  • Sinus problems
  • Anemia
  • Seizures

How Foods Damage your Body

Inflammation is one of the biggest drivers of weight gain and disease in America. Food sensitivities cause systemic inflammation of the body, beginning in the gut. For instance, in people with gluten sensitivity, the immune system attacks the intestinal cells to which gluten attaches, inflaming the gut. And, when the lining of the gut is inflamed, the body is prone to even more food sensitivities and reactions, and the problem spirals out of control.

The problem is that most people eat foods they have become sensitive to several times a day. Every time that food enters the body, the immune system whips itself into a frenzy. But because symptoms are delayed up to 72 hours after eating, a food sensitivity can be hard to spot. Without diagnosis or awareness, the damage is repeated over and over, meal after meal. Eventually, inflammation seeps throughout the body, establishing an environment ripe for weight gain and chronic disease.

Food Sensitivity and Weight Gain

Overweight? Can’t seem to lose that last ten pounds? Food sensitivities are likely part of the problem. They are the cause of inflammation, which is the underlying cause of weight gain. You can lose a significant amount of weight just by eliminating foods from your diet to which you are sensitive.

Food sensitivities can damage the gut lining. Damage to the gut can lead to a leaky gut, allowing food particles to be exposed to the gut’s immune system. This then triggers a system-wide immune response, leading to inflammation all over the body and producing obesity by increasing insulin resistance. Inflammation from any cause — infections, food sensitivity, or a high-sugar, bad-fat diet — will produce insulin resistance, leading to higher insulin levels. And since insulin is the hormone that signals your body to store fat, you store more fat — mostly around the belly.

For clients who have trouble losing weight, I often recommend a short elimination of dairy and gluten. Both dairy (milk, cheese, butter, and yogurt) and gluten (found in wheat, barley, rye, some oats, spelt, triticale, and kamut) are linked to insulin resistance and, therefore, weight gain. Temporarily cutting them out of the diet, allows the inflamed gut to heal. This one move may be the single most important thing you can do to lose weight.

Food Sensitivity and Pain

Many live with debilitating pain for which their doctor cannot manage or diagnose. Many are sent home with toxic painkillers that do not address the cause of their pain. Food sensitivities, especially to nightshades and gluten, may be the culprit. Regardless of their diagnostic label or type of arthritis, 75-90% of people have a sensitivity to nightshades. This means that three out of four people can attribute their pain to nightshade vegetables. Your stiff joints, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, ‘bad shoulder’, bum knee, lupus, multiple sclerosis, nerve disorder, tendonitis, etcetera, may merely be a by-product of the toxic substances in nightshades or gluten.

If a nightshade-free diet does not clear your symptoms within 3 months, you may have other hidden food sensitivities. Citrus fruits, red meats, and gluten are culprits for a large portion of the population. Note, you must be very strict with your food sensitivity diet or it won’t relieve your pain. One bite of food to which you are sensitive can cause pain for weeks and months.

One deterrent to making the connection between foods and pain is that one tiny mouthful may not trigger pain for 48 hours. It is dose related. So, a small amount here and there may not affect you. Nightshades accumulate in your system until they reach a high enough dose to produce pain. The alkaloids in nightshades are similar to pesticides. They accumulate in tissues, slowly building up without producing any symptoms until they reach a critical level, months or years later. Food sensitivity is the last thing suspected since these foods have been enjoyed for a lifetime.

Because unsuspected food sensitivity is such a common cause of chronic inflammation and pain, you owe it to yourself to rule out a cause over which you have 100% control. There is no diagnostic test that can take the place of a food elimination diet. Foods can cause allergy and sensitivity by over a dozen mechanisms. Blood and skin tests can only identify food allergies caused by one or two mechanisms. So there are many false negatives that can only be found through dietary trials. For more information, see Pain Free in Six Weeks by Sherry Rogers.

Sensitivity to Different Food Forms

Some people can eat one form of a food, but be sensitive to another form. Once a food sensitivity has been identified, challenge with all the forms to find out which ones you can tolerate. Different food forms are separated by ‘vs.’

  • GMO’s. Genetically Modified Foods vs. Organic. Most have problems with GMO foods, but can eat the same food if it’s organic or has the Non-GMO Project Verified Label. GMO’s contain genes of bacteria or animals spliced into vegetables and fruits. As their DNA has been altered, these ‘foods’ are not recognized by the human body, which can launch an immune system attack against these foreign invaders. Since the introduction of GMO’s in the late 1990’s, allergies and food sensitivities have skyrocketed. For more information on the dangers of GMO’s, including allergies, see The Institute for Responsible Technology. For a list of the top 10 GMO foods to avoid, see GMO Alert: Top 10 Genetically Modified Foods to Avoid Eating.
  • Gluten. Wheat vs. rye vs. barley vs. oats. Wheat is the most problematic as it contains the most gluten, while the other grains — rye, barley, and oats — may not pose as much of a problem. All oats contain a type of gluten called Avenin that is different to the type of gluten you find in wheat, rye, barley and triticale. Other oats are contaminated with the more problematic gluten when processed on machines that previously processed wheat or other gluten grains. However, some have to avoid all gluten containing foods, even in minute amounts. For more information, see my article Gluten Sensitivity Affects 1 in 3.
  • Dairy.
    Conventional Milk vs. Organic Milk vs. RAW Milk. Conventional dairy (Nonorganic) contains antibiotics, growth hormones, and GMO feed fed to cows. These can cause allergic responses because GMO’s increase allergies and growth hormones fed to cows increase inflammation markers in humans. You may not have a problem with dairy — just a problem with hormones, antibiotics, pesticides, GMO feed, pasteurization, and homogenization. Raw Unpasteurized Grass-fed Organic Unhomogenized Milk can usually be tolerated by people who cannot tolerate pasteurized milk because it contains all the enzymes needed for digestion (destroyed during pasteurization). Pasteurization and homogenization deforms the fats and proteins in milk, making them unrecognizable by the body and difficult to digest.
    Conventional Butter vs. Organic Butter vs. Raw Unpasteurized Organic Grass-fed Butter vs. Ghee (Clarified Butter). Some that have a problem with dairy can eat Ghee (Clarified Butter) because the casein, the dairy protein, has been removed.
    Commercially prepared Yogurt vs. Raw Unpasteurized Organic Yogurt and Kefir. Fermented and cultured raw organic dairy products like sour cream, yogurt, and kefir are best, as the lactose proteins have been broken down making them easier to digest.
    Conventional Cheese vs. Pasteurized Organic Cheese vs. Raw Milk Cheese. The same rules apply here as with milk above.
    Non-fat vs. Low-fat vs. Full-fat (Whole) dairy. I would only eat full-fat, whole milk dairy. Non-fat and low-fat dairy have lower fat, but add in powdered milk to give them body, which results in them containing more allergenic milk proteins, called casein. In order to make dried milk powder, milk is forced through tiny holes at a high pressure. During this process, the cholesterol in the milk becomes oxidized and other fats become deformed, resulting in milk powder that damages arteries, raises the risk of heart disease and cancer, and can cause liver damage. Because it’s considered an industry standard, even in organics, to use milk powder, milk processors aren’t required to list it on the ingredient label. These processed milks should generally be avoided as they can cause sensitivity issues where whole milk may not.
  • Corn. Some can’t eat corn as it is generally difficult to digest, but they can eat sprouted corn, which is predigested.
  • Eggs. Egg whites vs. egg yolks. Many people are sensitive to the concentrated proteins in egg whites, but ok with the yolk.
  • Soy. Soy (tofu, soy milk, soy protein isolate, textured vegetable protein, meat substitutes) vs. fermented soy (miso, natto, tempeh, soy sauce). Note soy is in ALL fast food. More than 60 percent of processed supermarket and health food store products contain soy ingredients. For more information, see my article Little Known Dangers of Soy.
  • Tree Nuts. Almonds vs. cashews vs. walnuts vs. pecans vs. pistachios vs. brazil nuts vs. hazelnuts vs. chestnuts.
  • Nightshades. Potatoes, tomatoes, all peppers (green, red, yellow, orange, jalapeno, chiles, and pimentos), Eggplant, Tobacco, Spices (from peppers like cayenne, chili, red pepper, curry mixes, paprika). Ingredients labeled ‘Spices’ or ‘Natural flavoring’ usually contain at least one nightshade. If you’re sensitive to nightshades, you’re sensitive to all of them. So, no need to try and eliminate each one. Sweet potatoes and yams are from a different family so these don’t need to be eliminated. Smoking must be eliminated to relieve symptoms.
  • Citrus. Lemons and limes may not bother people like grapefruit, oranges, and other citrus.
  • Yeast. Baker’s vs. Brewer’s yeast vs. Fermented products like vinegar and cider. Citric acid, a food additive, is also derived from yeast-culturing and yeast-fermenting processes. Many cow’s milk-containing products also contain yeast, since yeasts thrive on milk sugar (lactose). Because yeasts also thrive on concentrated sugars, many canned and frozen fruit juices, and particular fruit juice concentrates, can contain yeast. Kombucha contains strains of wild yeast.

Conditions Helped by Eliminating Sensitive Foods

Clinical research is accumulating evidence that sensitivity to foods can also increase the severity of the symptoms of many conditions normally not considered food related. A recent article in The New England Journal of Medicine listed 55 diseases and conditions that can be traced back to eating foods to which you are sensitive. A few include:

  • Obesity
  • Headaches/Migraines
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Nerve Disorders
  • GERD
  • IBS
  • Inflammatory conditions
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Joint pain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Asthma
  • Mood and behavioral disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder
  • Recurrent ear infections
  • Infertility
  • Osteoporosis

Steps in Identifying Sensitive Foods

Many physicians don’t see the value in uncovering hidden food sensitivities as a cause of health issues. I find this strange, since there is a growing body of medical literature illuminating the intimate relationship between the gut, food, and illness. Luckily, you don’t have to wait for your doctor for diagnosis. You can get testing directly from a lab. Here are a few ways to determine if food sensitivities and allergies are undermining your health:

  1. Mediator Release Test. Most alternative practitioners try to measure food sensitivities with an IgG test but this is only one type of immune reaction.  IgG is a one mechanism of an immune response that may or may not release the mediators that cause symptoms.  Mediators are what cause food sensitivity reactions and inflammation. These are what need to be measured.  Mediator Release Testing (MRT) is the primary food sensitivity testing I use when it appears a person’s symptoms are caused by a foods they are eating. This causes an immune reaction that can be measured in the blood.  We use the test results as a road map for an individualized anti-inflammatory diet.  Then once symptoms are greatly improved after 3 months we add in foods in a challenge diet. Additionally, the MRT is the only test on the market that shows HOW sensitive someone is to a food on a scale – green foods are least reaction, yellow foods are somewhat reactive and red foods are foods that the client is very reactive to. The MRT has a 94% accuracy rate.
  2. IGg blood test. A starting point to determine food sensitivities is with blood testing from or They have many different tests that can pinpoint sensitivities with no symptoms, delayed reactive sensitivities with IgG and IgE antibodies and cross-reactive foods. While they have their limitations, they are great way to pinpoint problematic foods and are a jumping off point to do a food elimination and challenge.
  3. Get an allergy skin. Allergy skin testing shows IgE antibodies and can help you to identify hidden food allergies. However, this cannot find sensitivities that occur 24-48 or more after exposure to a food. the skin or “scratch” test only shows reactions within 30 minutes and can even show false positives due to reactions to ingredients in the testing liquids. An allergy scratch test has limitations, but they can be a useful guide to what’s bothering you or pinpointing uncommon food allergies. They are a good starting point to do an elimination diet with those foods and see if they are in fact problematic.
  4. Go dairy and gluten-free for 6 weeks. Dairy and gluten are the most common triggers of food sensitivities. For clients who are fatigued or have trouble losing weight, I often recommend a short elimination. Both dairy (milk, cheese, butter, and yogurt) and gluten (most often found in wheat, barley, rye) are linked to insulin resistance and, therefore, weight gain. Temporarily cutting them out of the diet, allows the inflamed gut to heal. This one move may be the single most important thing most you can do to lose weight.
  5. Do an elimination diet. The elimination diet is the gold standard for ferreting out food sensitivities. It is a process that can take months or even years. Tests have their limitations and really cannot be used as a final word in whether you are sensitive to a food or not. One drawback of a food elimination diet is that it cannot help you pinpoint foods to which you have no visible symptoms. Some food sensitivities have no symptoms, for which testing may provide answers. Typically, the final word is a food elimination and challenge. All testing methods have their pros and cons.

How to Do a Food Elimination Diet

Delayed allergic reactions to foods are difficult to identify without eliminating the food from your diet for two weeks and slowly reintroducing each food one at a time while taking note of any physical, emotional or mental changes as it is being reintroduced or challenged. This process is quite arduous, can take many months, and must be done carefully if adverse food reactions are to be identified.

Once the body is cleansed and symptoms disappear, the foods that were eliminated are systematically added back into the diet, one food at a time. This reintroduction of foods is called the “challenge” phase of the diet. On the first day of food challenges, a food is eaten one to three times during the day. Over the next few days, watch for the return of any symptoms listed above. If you finish an elimination diet and still have symptoms, you may have to continue to do testing with other foods and do allergy testing with your immunologist or seek causes other than food sensitivities and allergies.

Individuals doing an elimination diet may experience uncomfortable symptoms caused by detoxification, including headache, muscle pains, or fatigue. These symptoms typically appear 2-3 days into the diet, and disappear within seven days.

If you are considering a food elimination diet and are looking to lose weight, I suggest starting out with my 14-Day Weight Loss and Mind-Body Detox Challenge.

It’s a full, mind-body detox approach to addressing the causes of weight gain and stubborn weight loss, all while helping you to regain control of your health. 

In the first webinar, I discuss common food sensitivities, along with my top weight loss tips. This course also also includes my guide on how to do a food elimination diet, along with many other resources and support tools.


But if you are ready to start a food elimination diet without those additional resources, here are the steps to take:

Step 1 – Elimination. These foods below must ALL be removed from the diet for TWO WEEKS. This is usually adequate time for elimination and healing of inflammation. Some elimination diets suggest staying free from these foods until your symptoms clear, and then to start the challenge phase. You may have to be free from offending foods for 20 to 60 days before you begin to feel better and symptoms to disappear. Judge for yourself how long you need to do the elimination phase before a food challenge.

Be aware that many processed foods contain at least one of the most common food allergens. Milk, soy, wheat, and eggs are staples in processed foods, and often appear in foods as “natural flavors,” which means that the food label may not list the ingredient.

Having trouble figuring out what to eat? The World’s Healthiest Foods is a wonderful website that can create menus for you based on a restricted diet. They have a Food Advisor that can find foods and menus right for any kind of diet.

  • GMO, genetically modified, foods
  • Gluten (in wheat, rye, barley, and some oats)
  • Dairy
  • Corn
  • Eggs
  • Soy
  • Tree nuts (such as almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, and chestnuts)
  • Nightshades are a family of vegetables that include potatoes (except sweet potatoes and yams), tomatoes, peppers (green, red, yellow, orange, jalapeno, chili, and pimentos), eggplant, tobacco, spices (from peppers like cayenne, chili, red pepper, curry mixes, paprika)
  • Citrus
  • Yeast (baker’s, brewer’s yeast, and fermented products like vinegar)

Step 2 – Challenge. Choose one of these foods and eat it one to three times a day. You must continue to eliminate all other foods on the list except for the foods you’re challenging. Otherwise, you will not know what is causing the reaction.

Step 3 – Record symptoms. Write in a food diary any symptoms you experience.

Step 4 – After four days, challenge with the next food and write your symptoms in your food diary.

Step 5 – Continue to challenge with each food every four days. Your body needs four days to clear any reaction to a food.

Step 6 – When you find foods to which you are sensitive, do another challenge with different forms of that food to see which ones affect you.

Addressing Food Sensitivities

Most diet books recommend avoiding foods to which you are sensitive. This will naturally alleviate some of the symptoms, but it doesn’t address a potential underlying problem — an overgrowth of bad bacteria in your intestines preventing proper digestion. This is not the cause of everyone’s food sensitivity, but it is worth addressing to weed it out as a cause and to improve your overall health. Once food sensitivities have been identified with an elimination diet, they can be avoided while you repopulate your gut with probiotics. This can take many months to a year. Problematic foods can then be slowly introduced again with another challenge. Many find that they can eat foods that were previously intolerable.

It has been reported that while individuals may sometimes have adverse reactions to particular foods, these reactions are not always consistent. This is because the response to food involves not only the immune system or a particular sensitivity to some of the molecules in foods, but is also affected by the health of the entire digestive tract and whether it is providing a good barrier for your body. Therefore when the health of your digestive system is compromised you may have a sensitivity to foods which otherwise would not affect you adversely.

Dr. Art Ayers did his PhD in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology was an assistant professor at Harvard University. Most of his research focuses on gut and inflammation, and food intolerance is one of his main areas of expertise. Dr. Ayers says that “food intolerance is based on missing bacteria in the gut rather than inadequacy of human enzymes, e.g. lactase, or altered immune system. The vast majority of intolerance can be cured by changing the bacterial composition of the gut’s microbiological community, the gut flora, rather than attempting to accommodate a permanent deficiency.”

Studies show that symptoms of lactose intolerance are alleviated significantly after supplementation with probiotic supplements and fermented foods like yogurt and kefir. Bacteria in these products have lactose-digesting enzymes, and when they get a chance to grow in the gut they can transfer their genes to the bacteria on the lining of the gut. Symptoms of intolerance may persist until the gut flora adjusts.

In nature, vegetables are contaminated with species of flex Clostridium and Bacillus bacteria, which are vital for proper digestion and development of the immune system. In fact, this is how cavemen were unwittingly provided with probiotics. When we spray soil and plants with man-made chemicals like pesticides and extensively wash or cook vegetables, we get rid of the naturally occurring beneficial microorganisms clinging to foods. Buy organic and don’t feel the need to wash your veggies to death. Eat some raw foods and some cooked foods. It’s about balance and variety. Antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals, poor diet (sugar and flour), excessive hygiene and bottle-feeding also contribute to the rapid increase in people getting food intolerance because these practices kill probiotics or prevent consumption.

Recommended Probiotics

There are a lot of good probiotics, but some are superior. Don’t waste your money on a probiotic that’s less than 10 billion CFU. Many brands do not possess the potency that’s on the label. It’s good to switch to different brands after you’ve finished a bottle to obtain as many different strains of probiotics as possible. You have over 400 different bacteria in your intestines. Diversity is key. I take probiotics every day in different forms and have used all the probiotics I recommend. For more information on probiotics, read my blog post Probiotics–The Foundation of Health. I take probiotics several times a day in different forms:

  • Cytoflora. CytoFlora, a probiotic lysate, contains beneficial bacteria of which the cell wall has been decimated. This decimation releases vital substances and nutrients from the cell wall and cytoplasm. It’s one of the only probiotics that’s in a liquid delivery method. Perfect for giving to kids. It’s shown to dramatically improve the functioning of autistic children.
  • HLC Intensive.  HLC Intensive Capsules by Pharmax contain the highest-potency probiotics available in a capsule. This probiotic is ideal to take after a course of antibiotics to replenish lost beneficial bacteria. You want your probiotics to have a number after the name of the priobiotic strain. This demonstrates a clinically proven strain. This product only contains clinically proven strains of probiotics.
  • Jigsaw Probiotics. This probiotic utilizes five of the most effective human strains, including the proven L. acidophilus La-14. Each capsule contains 25 billion live, friendly, active bacteria.
  • Innate Response Flora 50-14.  This is a good source of 14 bacterial strains that are extremely important in the gut.
  • Syntol AMD. This probiotic is specifically formulated to fight candida and yeast infections. This supplement does not need refrigeration because it uses a spore delivery method. It’s great for traveling. It contains a spore germinating probiotic blend, a yeast digesting blend of enzymes, and a prebiotic blend to feed your gut flora.
  • PrescriptAssist is specifically formulated to repopulate your gut after a round of antibiotics. In a recent study, Prescript-Assist was associated with significant reductions in symptoms of IBS.
  • Bio-K is a great probiotic supplement drink. They have dairy, soy, and rice probiotic mediums.
  • Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics. He uses a special 3-5 year aging process (depending on the formula) to ferment his probiotic brew. The probiotics are encapsulated with their culture medium of nutritious fermented vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, and seaweed. Yum!

Yogurt does have probiotics but is not potent enough to correct serious bacteria imbalances, which most people have. Plus, pasteurization kills all the probiotics except those used in the culture — which is usually only a strain or two. supplements can have five to 20+ — which is going to be far more beneficial in healing your gut. View yogurt as a treat — not a food you eat for probiotic health.

RAW yogurt or kefir is best for their large populations of probiotic gut bacteria. For more information, see

Fermented drinks that contain probiotics include coconut water kefir (Inner-Eco is my favorite), kvass, kombucha, and apple cider vinegar drinks.

Fermented foods like RAW sauerkraut and kim chi contain probiotic bacteria. Most commercially available fermented foods are pasteurized, which will kill the good bacteria. Look for raw products. I made my own at home with added probiotics. See a video on how to make your own fermented veggies at

Healing Leaky Gut Syndrome

While you are doing an elimination diet, take the opportunity to heal your leaky gut while you are replenishing your gut with probiotics. Healing a leaky gut is essential to eliminating food sensitivities and allergies. Hundreds of yeast and bacteria are released from a leaky gut into the bloodstream where they set up infection anywhere, including muscles, joints, bones, teeth roots, coronary arteries, or even the brain. Addressing this problem is essential to health. Even if you don’t have leaky gut, these steps will kill bad bugs in your intestines and set you on the path to vibrant health.

  • Garlic. Not only is it an antibiotic for Candida, H.pylori, and other bad bugs, but it also improves your immunity. Eat one raw or aged (fermented) garlic clove a day or take aged garlic supplements. Kyolic aged garlic extract is proven in hundreds of studies. Take 2 capsules 2-3 times a day.
  • Chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is healing and cleansing to the gut. You get some whenever you eat green vegetables. Do wheatgrass shots twice a week. Or take 2 caps or a healing tablespoon 2-4 times a day of Ky0-Greens.
  • L-Glutamine. This amino acid is what the gut uses to repair the lining of the intestines. I like this Glutathione spray. Take twice daily between meals to heal and seal the gut. L-Glutamine by Montiff or L-Glutamine by Thorne are also good!
  • Digestive Enzymes. These will help break down your food so they are easier for your gut to assimilate. I take Digestive Enzymes Ultra by Pure Encapsulations. Endo-veggies, Bio-gest by Thorne, or Xymozyme by Xymogen are great, too.
  • SeaVive. SeaVive from Proper Nutrition gives an extra boost to the immune system. It contains colostrum to boost antibody levels, beta-glucan to boost the infection-fighting power of your white blood cells, and a hydrolyzed fish protein to speed healing of the gut wall. It protects the gut from NSAIDs damage and speeds healing once damage from them have occurred.
  • Avoid NSAIDS. Anti-inflammatory medications like Advil or Aleve or narcotic pain medications damage the gut lining and cause leaky gut syndrome.
  • Avoid Antibiotics. Avoid them unless you have a life threatening infection. Seek out natural antibiotics like garlic, oil of oregano, etc. You will back to square one after a round of antibiotics. They kill your infection but also kill all the good probiotics in your intestines, allowing the proliferation of yeast and pathogenic bacteria.
  • UltraInflamX. If you do all these suggestions and still are not feeling better within a couple weeks, your gut may be so damaged it needs extra care. UltraInflamX by Metagenics is packed with specifically formulated nutrients to heal the gut. Drink two shakes a day. It was developed by one of the top nutritional specialists in the world, Dr. Jeffrey Bland, PhD.

Gluten Digesting Enzymes

Glutenza is the latest technology in destroying gluten proteins before they have a chance to harm your gut and body. If all else fails or you find yourself at a restaurant where you never know what gluten is lurking in the food, be sure to have a bottle of Glutenza handy. I always have a bottle with me when I eat out!

Remember, food sensitivities are not fixed. When you eliminate a food, and heal your digestive system, you may be able to handle previously sensitive food on occasion. Or you may never be able to handle them, which is commonly the case with nightshades and gluten. Reintroduce theses periodically and take note of how you feel.

Your body is evolutionarily designed to eat a huge variety of foods. And your body will be better equipped to handle foods to which you were previously sensitive if eaten occasionally, rather than three meals a day!

By eliminating foods to which you are sensitive, you may even help support weight loss.

How to Support Weight Loss and Detox

Recognizing your food sensitivities alone won’t help you lose weight. But, as we have covered din this article, it is a wonderful starting out point!

If you are looking for a whole body approach to losing weight and supporting your health, I highly recommend my 14-Day Weight Loss and mind-Body Detox Challenge!

Over 14-days I guide you through the tools and support you need to revamp your diet, reduce your stress, sleep better, boost your energy, emotionally detox, and lose weight!

Learn more here.

Click Here for References+

1. Allergy Avoidance Diet.
2. Campbell-McBride, Natasha, MD. Gut and Psychology Syndrome. 2nd Edition.
Medinform Publishing, 2010.
3. Ellen. Worth a Closer Look: Low Fat Milk.
4. Food Sensitivities.
5. Geib, Aurora. GMO Alert: Top 10 Genetically Modified Foods to Avoid Eating. May 1, 2012.
6. Guy, Allergy. Top 20 Food Allergies with Delayed Reactions.
7. Hunter, Eric. Food intolerance epidemic — Why does it happen, and can it be treated?
July 4, 2012.
8. Hyman, Mark, MD. Are Your Food Allergies Making you Fat? April 20, 2010.
9. Hyman, Mark, MD. How Hidden Food Sensitivities Make you Fat. February 22, 2012.
10. Rogers, Sherry, MD. Pain Free in Six Weeks. Prestige Publishing, 2008.
11. Rogers, Sherry, MD. The Environmental Illness Syndrome. Prestige Publishing, 1986.
12. Ross, Julia. The Mood Cure. Penguin Books, 2004.

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Dr Wendy Myers, ND is a detox expert, functional diagnostic nutritionist, NES Bioenergetic Practitioner, and founder of She is the #1 bestselling author of Limitless Energy: How to Detox Toxic Metals to End Exhaustion and Chronic Fatigue . Additionally, Wendy is the host of The Heavy Metals Summit, the Myers Detox Podcast, and the Supercharged Podcast. Passionate about the importance of detox to live a long and healthy life, she created the revolutionary Myers Detox Protocol , and Mitochondria Detox kit after working with thousands of clients, as well as a range of supplements to help you detox from everyday living and maintain a healthy lifestyle!

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