At last, the dinosaurs prove my story and, unwittingly perhaps, validate the hidden allergy hypothesis.
I can sum this up in a few words: if you eat a food regularly, your body will adapt to it. Any intolerance reaction will go “underground”.
But the liability is that it can get you down later, if you reach overload status, or if your tolerance drops (stress, viral attack, lack of sleep, parasites, any one of dozens of overload factors).
This is the whole basis of what we call a “hidden allergy” to food, or a “masked allergy”. As I said in my book Diet Wise, I rate this as one of the great health discoveries of the 20th century. It’s the key to countless illnesses.
Note: the holistic dodos mostly don’t get this either. They go banging on about gluten and casein allergies, as if that was food allergy, open and shut. They have not grasped that IT CAN BE ANY FOOD OR DRINK.
Hidden Food Allergies, This Landmark Study Changes Everything
When infants at high risk of developing peanut allergy consume peanut on a regular basis, their risk can be dramatically reduced, according to a study called LEAP — Learning Early About Peanut.
The work was published online in the New England Journal of Medicine to coincide with its presentation here at the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology 2015.
“Early, sustained consumption of peanut products was associated with a substantial and significant decrease in the development of peanut allergy in high-risk infants,” the researchers from King’s College London and Guy’s and St. Thomas’ National Health Service Foundation Trust, London, found.
“Conversely, peanut avoidance was associated with a greater frequency of clinical peanut allergy than was peanut consumption, which raises questions about the usefulness of deliberate avoidance of peanuts as a strategy to prevent allergy.”
See, what they have proven out is the concept of a food challenge test. It’s not 100% but it says that if you eat the food, you should get a symptom. Well, not always. You need to hit a threshold value, before symptoms are triggered. The problem for extreme sensitivity (anaphylaxis) is that the threshold is dangerously little.
But by regular exposure (twice or more a week we discovered back in the 1970s), the allergy can be suppressed. You might wonder how; it’s simple—if you eat a food more than once every 3 – 4 days, it means there is always some down there in your intestine. So when you eat some more, nothing changes much.
But if you empty your bowel of all traces of that food, as in an exclusion diet, then you become susceptible.
It’s a landmark study. I think this is so dramatic that I hope it doesn’t take long to change practice. They need to incorporate this “new” finding in their addled teaching methods.
General Adaptation Syndrome
It all fits with Hans Selye’s General Adaptation Syndrome.
Selye introduced three steps in the response to noxious stress:
Phase I he called the alarm phase. When you eat the food, you feel sick; you get one or more symptoms.
Phase II he called the adaptation phase. Your body has got used to the challenge food and settles down. It learns to “live with it.”
Phase III Selye called maladaptation. That means adaptation has been lost; the food once again brings on symptoms, only this time it’s more serious. Your body defenses have broken down. You are on the road to big trouble.
I personally have separated out a phase IV from Selye’s teachings. When phase III becomes really burdensome, we reach a stage where eating the food keeps the symptoms at bay. It’s a pure addiction phenomenon. If you don’t eat the food often (dosing), then withdrawal symptoms appear. This is like the person who gets an awful headache if they don’t drink coffee every couple of hours.
We can call this stage food addiction. You can see it clearly with people who wake up feeling yucky (death warmed up as some people say!), tired or crabby on waking, irritable or slow getting started in the morning.
You might feel that’s normal. It is certainly not. What’s happening is that a person on waking has been off food typically 8 – 10 hours and that is sufficient to let withdrawal symptoms commence.
But then he or she has a “fix” of tea or coffee (with milk), sugar, or corn or wheat, and within an hour that “dose” clears the withdrawal symptoms.
All this is in my paradigm-setting book Diet Wise. You are not really food wise if you don’t know all that I have just written. You need to get the book.
It’s a landmark study.
In an editorial accompanying the publication, Dr. Sampson and Rebecca Gruchalla, MD, from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, call for an immediate change to clinical practice on the basis of the LEAP findings.
The researchers admitted they thought there would be an effect, but never thought it would be that big (70% or over).
The LEAP study makes it clear that we can do something now to reverse the increasing prevalence of peanut allergy, and the miserable deaths due to sudden anaphylaxis. The problem is escalating because peanut products are commonly hidden in foods and manufacturers won’t admit to this.
The solution is simple, in a way: NEVER eat manufactured foods. That in turn would mean never eating out at a restaurant—that means you would get no peanut derivatives.
But food producers everywhere are very sneaky. Great care is needed.
Anybody 4 to 8 months of age, “or maybe it should be 4 to 6 months, needs to be skin tested. And if it’s negative, I’d get them on peanut,” said Dr. Sampson.
The Study Details…
The controlled LEAP trial involved 640 infants who were considered to be at high risk of developing peanut allergy because of severe eczema, egg allergy, or both. Participants were randomly assigned to peanut consumption or peanut avoidance.
All underwent a baseline skin-prick peanut test, and those assigned to consumption were given a baseline food challenge.
Children who tested negative on the initial skin-prick test underwent primary prevention. They were given 2.0 g of peanut protein in a single-dose food challenge.
Children who tested positive on the initial skin-prick test underwent secondary prevention. They were given incremental doses up to a total of 3.9 g.
Anyone who had a reaction to the food challenge was moved into the avoidance group.
Anyone who passed the food challenge was moved into the consumption group and fed at least 6 g of peanut protein per week, distributed in three or more meals, until they reached the age of 60 months.
The results showed that in the group given repeated peanut exposure, there was a massive 86% reduction in peanut allergy at 60 months of age among participants with negative skin-prick test at study entry. There was also a heartening 70% reduction among those who had positive skin test results at study entry.
There were no deaths in the study population and no significant differences in the rate of hospitalization or serious adverse events between the avoidance and consumption groups. Very satisfying.
This landmark study is the first controlled study to demonstrate a significant decrease in peanut allergy with the early introduction of peanut (until now recommendations say avoid peanut for the first 12 months of life—classic “off the wall” science).
Become a real expert on food allergies. Read my book Diet Wise.
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI) 2015. Presented February 23, 2015.