Every time you eat food you are sensitive to, it causes a delayed hypersensitivity reaction in your body. This kind of reaction can happen anytime between a few hours to a few days. The average time is 24-72 hours after eating the problematic food.
This reaction causes systemic inflammation and this inflammation ranges from symptoms such as fatigue, brain fog, sugar carvings, weight gain, digestive issues, joint pain, constipation, diarrhea and many more.
So what is exactly happening in your body?
Consume Foods You Are Sensitive To – Histamines/Inflammation – Cortisol Secretion – Energy Expenditure
When you eat food you are sensitive to, your body releases histamines, causing inflammation.
Histamine is an extremely important natural chemical in your body. It is a neurotransmitter and is involved in the regulation of stomach acid, the permeability of blood vessels, muscle contraction, and brain function. Histamine is also essential in defending the body against invasion by potentially disease-causing agents such as bacteria, viruses and other foreign bodies. When the food you are sensitive to enters your body, your body mistakes it for a foreign material and histamine is released as the first defense chemical activating inflammation. Inflammation is your natural body response to potential threat.
Then, your adrenal glands secrete a hormone called cortisol to attempt to reduce this inflammation. Cortisol is normally released in response to events such as waking up, exercising and acute stress. Costisol also plays many roles in maintaining your body homeostasis. It regulates energy by selecting the right amount of macro-nutrients (carbohydrate, fat and protein) your body needs to meet the physiological demand. When adrenal glands are required to secrete at high levels of cortisol for extended periods of time due to prolonged inflammation, they can become fatigued or begin to secrete cortisol at lower levels. When this occurs it is common to see an increase in fatigue, pain and/or inflammation.
In short eating foods to which you are sensitive to requires more energy from your body to combat their inflammatory effects, leaving you with less energy to function.
Consume Foods You Are Sensitive To – Histamines/Inflammation – Cortisol Secretion – Energy Expenditure – Cravings – Overeating – Fatigue/Weigh Gain
It does not end like that. The feeling of fatigue creates a vicious cycle. To compensate feeling tired you turn to sugary and starchy food for a quick energy boost. But this energy last only for a limited time so you start eating more and more sugary or starchy food in order to keep your energy level. You feel very energetic but it is called “sugar high”.
But when your blood sugar level rises, your pancreas secretes hormone called insulin. It allows your body to use sugar for energy. Glucose is a type of sugar found in many carbohydrates (sugary and starchy food). Insulin also helps balance your blood sugar levels.
When you eat high amount of sugary and starchy food, your body perceives it as an emergency and insulin reacts by clearing extra sugar as fast as it can. This causes a rapid drop in blood sugar level and you are experiencing a “sugar crash”.
So what do you do? You eat even more sugary and starchy food. You are basically overeating so your body starts accumulating extras as your body fat. You feel exhausted and your weight increases.
At this point it is very easy to create a sugar addition. Studies have shown that with the higher level of sugar after eating particular food, the hungrier you feel and the more you want to eat. This food repeatedly elevates dopamine levels which control the brain’s reward and pleasure centres. Although dopamine is involved in many processes in the body, it also gives you a feeling of euphoria or a “high.” Just as any other addiction, euphoria of dopamine is short-lived and can be followed by a “low” that causes depression, lack of pleasure, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating. So you reach for another cupcake or a bag of potato chips.