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5 Food-Related Medical Conditions

 Posted on July 24, 2023 in Uncategorized


Food serves more than a nutritional purpose in our lives. The food we consume plays a fundamental role in our overall well-being. Over the years, medical professionals have spoken up about the link between food and some common medical conditions. Understanding this connection is essential for making informed dietary choices and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Continue reading to learn about the five food-related medical conditions.

1. Food Intolerances and Allergies

Food allergies and intolerances can cause various adverse reactions, ranging from mild discomfort to life-threatening anaphylaxis. Allergies occur when the immune system overreacts to certain foods, while intolerances result from the body's inability to digest or process specific substances. For example, Lactose Intolerance is characterized by insufficient production of the lactase enzyme in the small intestine, leading to the inability to effectively digest lactose, a sugar commonly present in dairy products.

Typically, symptoms associated with lactose intolerance surface within a timeframe of 30 minutes to two hours following the consumption of dairy products. It should be noted that higher quantities of dairy intake may exacerbate these symptoms.

Common allergens include peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, dairy, eggs, and gluten. Managing food allergies and intolerances involves identifying trigger foods and following a strict avoidance diet. Consulting with a healthcare professional or allergist is crucial for accurate diagnosis and guidance.

Pro-Tip: If you are visiting a restaurant or ordering food from a local vendor, it is important to inform them about your food allergies or intolerances while placing the order.

2. Gastrointestinal Disorder

Did you know that 11% of US citizens suffer from gastrointestinal disorders, including Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Celiac Disease, and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)? In most cases, gastrointestinal diseases are often triggered by diet. For example, IBS may be triggered by certain foods, including fatty foods, caffeine, alcohol, and spicy foods.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder characterized by an adverse reaction to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. GERD is caused by stomach acid reflux into the esophagus and can be aggravated by acidic, fatty, and spicy foods.

In simpler words, several factors can trigger gastrointestinal disorders, including consuming a low-fiber diet, eating dairy products in large quantities, stress, lack of physical activity, and antacid medicines.

To manage these conditions, it is essential to identify and avoid trigger foods and follow a tailored diet plan recommended by healthcare professionals.

3. Cardiovascular Diseases

Cardiovascular diseases, including heart disease and stroke, are major causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Unhealthy dietary choices, such as high intake of saturated and trans fats, sodium, sugary, and processed foods, contribute to the development of these conditions.

To minimize the risk, eating a heart-healthy diet rich in whole grains, healthy fats, lean proteins, vegetables, and fruits is advised. Minimize the intake of processed foods, including fast food, packaged snacks, sugary desserts, and sugary beverages. These items are often high in unhealthy fats, sodium, and added sugars, which can harm the cardiovascular system. Keep sodium consumption in check by avoiding excessive salt use during cooking and limiting processed foods typically high in sodium. Opt for herbs, spices, and other flavor enhancers as healthier alternatives. 

4. Food-Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome

Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome (FPIES) is a delayed-onset type of food allergy that primarily affects the gastrointestinal system. Unlike typical food allergies, FPIES does not involve an immediate immune response mediated by Immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. Instead, it is characterized by a delayed immune response, typically occurring 2 to 6 hours after ingesting the triggering food. Common culprits include cow's milk, soy, rice, oats, and certain grains, although any food can potentially cause a reaction.

The symptoms of FPIES include recurrent and severe vomiting, occasionally accompanied by diarrhea. Additional signs may include lethargy, abdominal pain, paleness, and weakness. The primary treatment for an FPIES reaction involves rehydration, and some patients may receive intravenous fluids in the emergency room.

Conventional food allergy tests are not typically used by healthcare providers to diagnose FPIES. The primary management strategy for FPIES is strict avoidance of trigger foods. This involves identifying and eliminating all foods that have caused a reaction in the past.

In severe cases, a hypoallergenic amino acid-based formula may be necessary to ensure adequate nutrition. As children age, some may outgrow their sensitivity to certain foods, and reintroduction can be attempted under medical supervision. It is advised to work closely with healthcare professionals, including pediatric allergists and dietitians, to ensure a nutritionally balanced diet and appropriate management.

5. Eczema

Eczema, a chronic skin condition characterized by itchy, inflamed, and dry patches, affects millions worldwide. While various factors contribute to eczema development, including genetics and environmental triggers, recent research has shed light on the significant role that food can play in triggering or exacerbating this condition, including gluten, wheat, citrus fruits, grapes, seeds, nuts, shellfish, food additives, soy, eggs, broccoli, dairy, tomatoes, and spices like vanilla, cinnamon, and cloves.

Managing eczema requires learning about the trigger foods, switching to an anti-inflammatory diet, staying hydrated, and including probiotics like kimchi, sauerkraut, and yogurt in your nutritional regimen.

Fight for Your Rights with Newland & Newland LLP

At Newland & Newland LLP, we understand the complexities and challenges faced by individuals dealing with food allergies. Our team of highly skilled and compassionate food allergy lawyers is dedicated to advocating for your rights and ensuring your safety.

Whether you have suffered from allergic reactions due to mislabeled products, restaurant negligence, or any other food-related incident, our experienced attorneys are here to guide you through the legal process. We are committed to seeking justice on your behalf and holding responsible parties accountable.

Trust Newland & Newland LLP to provide you with the strong legal representation you deserve as we fight for your rights and work towards creating a safer environment for those with food allergies. Contact us to schedule a consultation with the most reputed food allergy lawyer in Arlington Heights, Chicago, Libertyville, Crystal Lake, Joliet, and Itasca.

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