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Did you know people with symptomatic hypermobility can often struggle with food sensitivity?

by Kelly Harris, BA dipNT rCNHC mBANT Registered Nutritionist

People with symptomatic hypermobility, #SH #EDS or #HSD can often struggle with food sensitivity, ranging from minor food intolerances to life-threatening IgE mediated food allergies (which are direct and often severe allergies to specific foods).


In addition to removing obvious allergens from the diet, it is worth thinking about how foods are grown (pesticides, herbicides, etc) and prepared (food additives, stabilisers, inflammatory cooking methods such as deep frying, etc).


It is ideal to keep your diet as broad ranging in nutrients as is possible and to avoid an overly restrictive diet by only removing those foods which are necessary to eliminate. People with symptomatic hypermobility conditions may notice a reduction in minor food sensitivity reactions after reducing or eliminating overly-processed or packaged foods and aiming to focus on including fresh, unprocessed or low-processed organic or non-certified spray-free foods in their diet instead, where possible.


The reason for this improvement is not always just because of the elimination of the foods listed on the main ingredients list which may be causing an inflammatory reaction (wheat, gluten, soya or canola for example) but also because of the other ingredients which may or may not be listed, such as stabilisers, artificial sweeteners, emulsifiers, flavour enhancers and other trace additives and residues contributing to overall chemical sensitivity including symptoms of migraine, asthma and gastrointestinal disturbance.


If you want to know more about the Guidance on multiplex allergy diagnostic testing for people with allergy that is difficult to diagnose you might want to look at this from NICE 2016 reviewed 2020.

ImmunoCAP ISAC 112 for multiplex allergen testing

"'Allergy is a form of exaggerated sensitivity (hypersensitivity) to a 'foreign' substance, called an allergen, that is either inhaled, swallowed, injected, or comes into contact with the skin, eyes or mucosa. Hypersensitivity reactions are divided into 2 categories: IgE‑mediated reactions +non‑IgE‑mediated reactions. IgE‑mediated reactions are usually rapid in onset, cause symptoms ranging from mild to moderate reactions (such as hives), to severe systemic reactions (anaphylaxis)" NICE Non‑IgE‑mediated reactions are less well understood and are mediated by other parts of the immune system. Gold standard is still a food challenge but skin prick tests and ISAC play a part in isolating IgE sensitivities. Cross sensitivity is hard to distinguish without food challenges. Jane Green was the specialist advisory lay committee member for this Guidance.

J Green, MA Ed.

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