You don't have to be an allergist; just start paying attention and learn a bit about allergy, it could save your life, or at the least improve the quality of your life!
Many common ailments and complaints are caused or worsened by allergy; things like headaches, constipation, frequent infections, apnea, weight gain, depression, hypothyroid disease, ADHD, degenerative arthritis, and many more.
In most cases involving allergy, food allergy is the biggest cause of symptoms and poor health. Unfortunately, many individuals are unaware that they have food allergies, and most medical doctors still have not caught on. (In the 1980's almost all MDs were saying that dairy products were a great healthy food for everyone. Gradually that has changed and now in 2012 a small number of my patients have been told by their MD that dairy products might be causing their ills.) After examining and treating thousands of patients over a period of 3 decades, I have yet to find a single person who did not have at least one food allergy.
There are at least five major reasons why food allergies are often not recognized:
1) in our culture, we think of only a few reactions as being allergic; rash, sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, itching, etc... In actuality, the most common allergic reaction is tightening of muscles, which can result in muscle ache, spinal pain, headache, high blood pressure, asthma, constipation, diarrhea, and more.
2) most people eat the same foods each day. Given that symptoms often come and go, one would understandably think that if their symptoms were caused by these foods, that the symptoms would be constant.
3) the damaging effects of food allergy are often gradual in the same way that smoking can take years to finally cause lung cancer. The damage is not felt at the time that it is occuring.
4) food allergy is just not something that Americans think about; in large part due to the lack of knowledge and awareness of medical doctors.
5) foods that a person loves/craves/eats every day, are statistically found to be an allergen for that person. Most patients and most doctors don't choose to deal with facing this challenge.
Allergy in Children