OTHER ‘FOOD FADS’ NOW BEING TAKEN SERIOUSLY
Histamine intolerance is not the only foodbased health issue once dismissed as ‘faddy’ that is now an accepted medical condition.
WHITE WINE ALLERGY
THIS can be an intolerance to preservatives called sulphites that leads to wheezing, tightness of breath and nasal congestion. It is not a true allergy so blood or skin prick tests are of no use. Asthmatics are sensitive to sulphites, which are also found in, for example, dried fruit.
THOSE who complain about pain or bloating after eating bread or wheat may be tested for coeliac disease, where the immune system reacts to gluten. Often, these blood tests and biopsies come back negative.
Now it is known some people have noncoeliac gluten sensitivity that leads to similar symptoms to coeliac disease, but does not trigger the production of anti-bodies or gut damage that coeliac disease does. It is thought to affect seven million people in the UK. The exact cause is unknown, but symptoms improve by avoiding gluten.
CAN’T DIGEST MILK
A MILK allergy means even a small drop can trigger a potentially violent reaction, and is an immune system response to a protein in the milk.
But a lactose intolerance is more subtle, and is caused by an inability to digest lactose — the sugar in milk.
It was overlooked for a long time because it could not be detected by allergy tests.
It stems from a lack of the enzyme lactase and can lead to diarrhoea, flatulence and nausea which may occur hours after drinking the milk.
Lactose intolerance can be temporary, while for other people it is a more longterm condition.