The other weekend I did an experiment with myself, I added back dairy and eggs to my diet. These are both IgG allergens for me. There is more about IgG allergens on my website, but this note is not about that topic. What I wanted to share with you was the profound affect this had on my emotional state.
I felt a level of irritability that I can only rate as a ten out of ten. How did I ever function while eating these foods in the past? The truth is that I didn’t, at least not the way I would have liked to have functioned. In any case the shift from feeling basically good to feeling such a profound affect on my emotions lead me to reflect on what is happening in my body.
The first effect that consuming our allergens has on us is to stress our adrenal glands. The adrenal glands are our major stress defense organ and also responsible for releasing anti-inflammatory hormones. When we eat our allergens the body believes it is under attack, and it responds with inflammation. This immune reaction is also called the inflammatory cascade. Imagine a series of dominos lined up where the artist ends up knocking over a million dominos just by hitting one to start, this is what consuming our allergens does to us.
Back to our adrenals though. So the body begins this balancing act between the inflammation created by the immune reaction and the need to balance that inflammation with anti-inflammatory hormones produced by the adrenal glands, namely cortisol. This entire reaction creates a tremendous stress for the adrenal glands. These same adrenal glands are responsible for balance our blood sugar. Anyone that has seen a child over reacting on sugar or felt the lows of having low blood sugar knows that our blood sugar has a strong effect on our moods and emotions.
Then there is the direct inflammatory effect on our nervous system. When we eat our IgG food allergens our body goes into attack mode. The evolutionary response to infection has been to destroy everything and then go back and fix it later. Inflammation in our digestive system created by our IgG allergens damages the serotonin receptors in our intestine.
You may know serotonin as the “feel good” hormone. What you may not know is that there are more serotonin receptors in the gut than in the brain. So when we interfere with intestinal serotonin function we interfere with brain serotonin function. This is another way these allergens rob us of the way we want to show up in the world.
It is important to remember that IgG allergens are antibodies. Antibodies are created when the body believes it is under attack. So if you are wondering if a particular state of mind can be created by an allergen then just imagine how you felt the last time you had the flu. This is an example of an illness that can create an IgG immune response. Were you in the mental, emotional and physical state that you would want to be to be at your best? If not then it is time to be serious about avoiding your IgG allergens, as I was reminded myself this weekend.