This blog is a voyage of discovery to find out how to create your own ideal eating plan – one that allows best weight control, reduces symptoms, aches and pains, promotes better health and allows you flexibility for when eating out or other sudden lifestyle changes, while feeling and looking at your best. .
A few years ago I began to wonder whether you could find out your ideal diet via your blood or your DNA. My dad had read The Blood Group and after I spent a year eating only raw food and no dairy or gluten, great for my hair and skin but I put on weight and felt sluggish and bloated, he said that I needed protein for my blood group.
One glance online shows that books about immunology and allergy are all incredibly expensive. The internet has sewn up the profitable aspect of research into the relationships between health and food intolerances. I called my GP who can only test for gluten allergy and not for casein sensitivity at all. A dietician is available who can tell me less than I have already found out or is available on line: about what food groups exist.
Here is an example of the jumble of terms in my health discovery so far:
- Proteins I should eat are in eggs, meat and fish.
- Sugars in milk are OK for me: lactose.
- Proteins I should avoid are in dairy: casein. However, this protein is split into A1 and A2. See below.
- Protein in dairy and in ricotta and similar cheeses that can have health benefits: whey
- Proteins in carbohydrates I am OK with: gluten.
- Sugars in crops such as wheat, malt and oats etc (pasta and bread in their cooked form) I should avoid: carbohydrate.
As mentioned about A1 and A2 types of milk protein, this article explains how they come about: essentially, due to large dairy farm cows being given bST (bovine somatotropin) used to increase their productivity and being fed on synthetic vitamins and corn instead of grass. This produces a beta-casein type A1 protein, which is where people may get the idea that cheese is addictive as A1 behaves like an opiate and has been linked to chronic diseases.
However, Dr Phil Maffetone says in his article, milk from Jersey, Guernsey and Brown Swiss cows, sheep, goats, yaks and buffalo amongst others produce A2 casein which has not been linked to these issues. Milk with A2 rather than A1 has also been confirmed to make a difference by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
This initially inspired my curiosity about how food could vary from person to person and I searched for answers, then found that DNAfit provided a food plan according to my DNA. However, the results proven confusing, particularly when it just said I was 100% lactose tolerant and didn’t mention casein. This made me trust the results less and I kept looking. I remembered a friend a while ago who had various health complications sending off a hair sample and being told all the things they ought to cut out of their diet. This friend, Eddie, did this and had fantastic results. I remember thinking at the time this was very expensive but my searching led me to Langton Smith Health in 2016, who provided a sugar intolerance test for £30.
I had a feeling already that I didn’t do well with sugar. I don’t add sugar to anything and prefer a starter to a pudding when eating out. I have also thought for a long time that I don’t like salt. Plus I buy blueberries and water melons sometimes but they don’t get eaten. The sugar results from Langton Smith said: I ought to eat protein. Avoid salt, that I had a high level of sugar intolerance and that is was genetic. This seemed to be a match.
Food intolerances, allergies and sensitivities cause reactions in us, which become more pronounced as we get older as most people eat things several times a day that their bodies do not process well. What are the signs that your body is struggling with some of the foods you eat? How do we find out what diet is best for us? These are the questions I have been asking and it seems that no article points you in the right direction, you just find out a little more each time.
You probably already know how food intolerance and sensitivities work and have perhaps even been to your doctor about it or tried to find information about it online. This is the information I believe you may be looking for.
I have been combing the internet for the stories to investigate to find ways to control weight, reduce aches, pains and other symptoms and ultimately help prevent disease. If you like, to “follow the money”, try an experiment, to see how much bias is out there: If you started to research into food intolerances and sensitivities you probably won’t find much about casein and weight gain. Try putting “how casein makes you fat” into Google and you will get myriad articles promoting it as a supplement, none which talk about it as a potential allergen and cause of weight gain. No articles will appear in Google linking casein intolerance to learning difficulties or other problems. The word “protein” would confuse me too as I am supposed to have a high protein diet, but I also ought to avoid casein which is a “milk protein”. suspect there is a lot of money being made from casein.
If casein is sold as a “protein supplement” why do products that contain it not say so in their ingredients?
I have been reading books, tried a diet (Jenny Craig), searched for articles, taken tests (sugar intolerance and gluten) and been to my local GP and a nutritionist. No one has the answer as it is different for each and every one of us. One thing sums it up, though. To find out what food intolerancees and sensitivities you have and if you cut them out, there may be a massive difference made. Even this has been written about but then the whole topic becomes another Gordian Knot of confusion.
For example, this article about the hunter gatherer diet makes a lot of sense of the things to eat and avoid, quite close to what I try to do at present, with removing the dairy and grains, but this piece lost my trust when it said about missing “calcium, fibre and energy’ so I inserted the calcium chart further below from another article.
This is a precis of all those different useful thoughts and an attempt to find the big story that has fallen into the cracks. That is: what you eat is very important and if you avoid foods that your body doesn’t agree with, it can have untold advantages for the rest of your life. I have been searching for the answer myself for years and it is like detective work. Find a clue in one article and do a new search. This blog is a result of this plus a whole range of experiences such as leaving a job, working from home, buying cheap food on a low income, stopping smoking etc.
The ultimate story is to lead you the reader to find the best foods for you, that you can enjoy without worry or aggravation and perhaps reach your ideal weight and feel and look your best. Reactions to food intolerances and food senstivities can increase as time goes on, making the effects of these foods more troublesome as we get older. This can answer many questions, including weight control and perhaps allow you to surprise your stop your friends and family giving you disapproving looks when you eat anything.
I believe strongly that pain or other physical reactions are messages from our bodies to make us aware of something and that taking pain killers or other pharmaceuticals is killing the messenger and probably teaching it to be quieter in future. Symptoms mean your body’s natural defenses are sending messages to tell us something is not working or going wrong. By listening to our bodies and finding out what is going on, we can reduce the pains and even the feelings that trouble us in the first place by finding what causes them.
There are also healthy messages to be sent to our brain that malfunctions such as allergies can interfere with, such as when we are full after eating.
There seems to be no one diet that will work for everyone and human beings have a habit of making their own opinions more important than the truth, which leaves everyone else none the wiser. However, one size does not fit all so this article is about how to find what is best for you. For example avocados may be healthy in general but some people may find their throat is full of phlegm or they are croaky as a reaction so their body is struggling with something about the avocado or maybe something they have eaten it with.
The information in this blog is drawn from personal experience, tests, books I have read and articles I have found while trying to research what sugar does to each of our bodies and how to find the eating plan for you.I have asked both Langton Smith Health and YorkTest for some answers to questions but after many many searches, the articles and books with the information I want to convey here start to emerge. Here is a forum where people discuss all things – including their own experiences of Dr Mansfield’s book on the 12 steps to successful weight loss that recommends eliminating foods that you may be allergic to.
This all started with tests on sugar intolerance by Langton Smith set beside a test by DNAfit and the information I only just found out from YorkTest that I have never found in any articles anywhere before. Another thing Mike at YorkTest told me is symptoms from food can take a couple of days to appear so a line cannot be drawn straight to the offending food. Dr Jen Stagg talks about how our genes and genetics will affect each of us differently in this article.
The other big distraction to finding your ideal healthy diet is the large variance in products available in health food shops. You have gluten free, dairy free, vegan, organic, fair trade and a whole host of conflicting messages. This makes it even more helpful to the individual to choose the right test to find out what foods agree with you best.
Although a DNA test to see what foods work best for you might be good as part of your investigation, the cost of the tests can add up and the results might require a health professional to translate into what to actually eat or avoid. For example, a DNA test may show you are 100% lactose tolerant and to eat the “Mediterranean Plan”, as my DNAfit test did, but then a sugar intolerance test will show milk high in the avoidance charts. This could mean another part of milk is what is upsetting you, such as Casein. Casein can cause unwelcome weight gain in some people, while others who find it hard to gain weight will take it as a supplement. Here is an article about casein intolerance. Plus, here is another one about the difference between intolerances, allergies and between intolerances to lactose and the protein in dairy called casein or sometimes whey, saying why casein intolerance takes time to show itself and is therefore harder to identify.
A point in hand: Dr Jen Stagg says why we must eat whole grains (turns out this is part of a much wider selection of foods and she does not give one example of a “healthy whole grain” and Mark Sisson (2nd article on casein intolerance above) says an absolute “no” to grains but also doesn’t give any examples, which would be helpful, just for simplicity.
For the sake of health, it is best to explore what makes you feel best, gives you most energy, lets you manage your weight as you want and keeps away the aches and pains. However, the more you search the more it is possible to find the articles that are beginning to tell a new story. Books are being written now that suggest we each need to find what foods our bodies agree with for better health. There is a book called Your Hidden Food Allergies are Making You Fat by Roger Deutsch and Rudy Riviera. Then a Daily Mail article even says “One size fits all” does not work.
However, this article by Anna Hodgekiss does suggest the scatter gun approach by restricting your eating to low risk foods, which can apparently trigger weight loss within the first 7 days:
The elimination’ diet allows you to eat as much as you like of the 42 foods identified as being ‘low sensitivity foods’, such as turkey, lamb, many types of fish, lentils, vegetables such as green beans and avocado and fruit such as apples.
Why not get tested? The best place to start is probably the NHS.I just called my local surgery and said I would like a food tolerance test and the doctor will call up and discuss this and refer me to a nutritionist to take it further. Hopefully reading this article can help you discover some good questions to ask.
It has also been known for some time in natural healing studies that people with “learning difficulties” ought to avoid certain foods. Gary Null Ph.D’s “The Encyclopedia of Natural Healing” says:
Many children with learning difficulties seem to have a gluten and casein sensitivity.
Gary Null also points to candiida, which is created when two types of sugar intolerance are both present and recommends a yeast and mold free diet. I have dyspraxia and the yeast and casein sensitivities have turned out to be true for me. Hindsight is wonderful but these things are hard to discover and trust when going forward.
It is best to, at all times, keep your own instincts open and learn to trust them and listen to your body. Perhaps make a note of reactions from flatulence, bowel movements, fatigue, anxiety, sadness, through to aches and pains and migraines. For example, If you find there is a healthy food, such as blueberries, that you like and buy but never eat, it may be because they produce too much sugar in your body and you find yourself naturally avoiding them.
Finding your best diet, not to lose weight but to stick to once you are happy with it, can also be crucial to fight disease. Each of our white blood cells behave differently according to what we put in our bodies and by maintaining healthy white blood cells, PERHAPS we can avoid more serious conditions including Cancer.
The big question is, who is to be believed. I think the sugar intolerances tests provided by Langton Smith Health are a great place to start as the results are very accessible, presented in a quick, easy to read way and, taken from a hair sample which they can hold on file with your form if you choose to take further tests, you may find some surprising results. For me, some of the results matched my instincts and so that is why I believe it is important to start with those. Here is one person’s experience with Dr Mansfield’s book and YorkTest.
There is a lot of disagreement within the scientific community, with self-interests, conflict of interest (a natural alternative to drugs for example, which may cost a scientist funding from a pharmaceutical), and the whole subject of a healthy diet has become a Gordian Knot. I once read a book called Fat Around the Middle, which lost credibility for me when it kept contradicting itself. Here is one suggestion of the foods to eat and those to avoid if you wanted to try your elimination diet to find the foods that effect you.
One can begin to understand conspiracy theorists when every single person writing about food seems to be avoiding one big issue: How does a sugar intolerance actually make us fat? There must be a scientific explanation somewhere.
I think the biggest story has fallen between the cracks. All the articles I find about the difference between casein and lactose intolerance and allergies, for example, tell the same old story and they list the same symptoms. Seldom are feasible explanations given with recommendations to help provide credibility. For example, I had a gluten intolerance test that showed I had no problem there but in terms of sugar intolerance, it seems that people always suggest dairy and gluten free products together without saying how or why they may be linked or not. Here is another “lump it all in together one size fits all” approach that doesn’t say anything to back up the title “Why hidden food intolerances make us fat.” I am still trying to find out.
Eureka: An article by Andrea Rossi actually says that an intolerance to casein is linked to belly fat. This article explains the difference between different types of allergy and again says that casein allergies take longer to manifest.
This article suggests finding if you are allergic to a food group and cutting it out of your diet. Dr Kendra Persall does say that our bodies retain fat and water when dealing with an intolerance and cutting it out can let you shed up to 10 pounds without any further dietary restrictions. She doesn’t talk about specifics though. I am wondering why citrus is in this list of eliminations. Not explained in her article. It is yet another “one size fits all”.
Each article helps me get closer and this one even lists alternate ways to get calcium if you eliminate milk from your diet.This one may be more helpful. It also says that in Canada, products have to declare if they have milk products in their ingredients as it is considered a major allergen. It is also estimated that casein intolerance may be much more common than lactose intolerance but not enough is known about it yet.
I once read a book called Fit For Life, which worked wonders and was not hard to follow once I had got into the routine of it, but it seems that since then, the more I have heard, read or found out, the more confused i have got about what foods to eat or avoid. Fit for Life seemed based on quite a natural diet with fruit in the mornings and it worked for me in my twenties and it has been linked to good health as well as weight control. However, the scientific community has done its fair share of poo pooing, saying that the research and testing to find the recommendations in the book lack proper medical credentials. So do my instincts but I would trust them before someone who simply wrote something off because it didn’t come with the right qualifications.
Did anyone see Sugar Free Farm? It may have been really lovely food but everyone reacted differently and one guy even went to hospital. I believe there is no ‘one size fits all’ in food. One size fits one size.
One Size Does Not Fit All.
My experience of articles about nutrition is they often let you down. They are almost always generic and contradict themselves. We all know it would be best to avoid alcohol, sugar and caffeine, but of course everyone likes something naughty occasionally. Therefore, I believe that by finding out your own unique food preferences it can help you choose the “naughty” items that suit you best, in other words you may suit a wine more than beer or gin and tonic more than rum on a night out and find caffeine in tea is less kind to you than coffee or visa versa.
Here is quite to tell if your body is not coping with the hidden sugars you are consuming very well.
The basics of Fit For Life was to have fruit in the morning and then not mix carbohydrates and protein. What disrupted this is finding out that I absorb so much sugar into my blood from certain fruits and what I can afford to buy to eat or even eating out. Menus seem to be riddled with hidden ingredients even if the items are in English.