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foods to help emotions

Food Intolerance vs. Food Allergy


Is food intolerance the same as a food allergy?
A food allergy is when the body mistakes an ingredient in food (usually a protein) as harmful and creates antibodies to fight it. The allergy develops when the antibodies are battling the “invading” food (protein).  The severity of allergies may vary but they always carry the risk of anaphylactic shock. For this reason, foods you are allergic to must be avoided for life. The most common food allergies are peanuts, tree nuts (such as walnuts, pecans and almonds), fish and shellfish, soy and wheat. If you are an adult, you may have discovered the allergy by accident and it most likely involved a visit to your local emergency room.
A food intolerance often turns up later in life. People are frequently surprised to discover they are lactose intolerant later in life.   The truth is, you most likely had some form of food intolerance when younger, but your body compensated for it.
One of the first symptoms of a food intolerance is your energy level.  

How often do you feel tired during the day? This one symptom alone could be a food intolerance reaction. Gas, diarrhea, bloating and headaches can all be food intolerance reactions. And because reactions can occur up to 48 hours after eating, you may not make the connection. Instead, most seek relief from symptoms by using over-the-counter medications.
Due to the pervasive low quality S.A.D (Standard American Diet) in our country, the incidence of food intolerances is on the rise.  

Many digestive problems are never fully diagnosed, and food intolerance can often be the cause.  More than 15% of Americans are now thought of to be gluten intolerant and an estimated 75% of Americans are lactose intolerant.
So how can you know for sure?
It’s called an elimination diet and more and more individuals are finding this to be a critical step in solving health issues.  Elimination diets are amazingly effective in the case of food intolerance, which irritates your digestive system or when you are unable to properly digest or break down food.
It’s important to note that food intolerance reactions tend to be activated when you eat the same foods over and over – and triggered by stress to your digestive system. Examples include a course of antibiotics to treat an infection, birth of a child, moving, finding a new job, surgery and frequent low blood sugar (i.e. letting several hours pass by without eating). These are all stresses that can cause the digestive barrier to break down and expose your immune system to commonly eaten proteins in foods.
In the past, we ate by season and did not have access to the same foods all year long, so these reactions would go away. Today, we can eat the same foods all year long, meaning we can develop reactions to the foods we eat most commonly and the reactions won’t go away.
Put simply, if you identify which foods your digestive system has difficulty tolerating, you can avoid them for a period of time and the reaction will typically go away. Unfortunately, most of us are unaware of food intolerance reactions because they become so common.
In my practice, there is a particular test I use to pinpoints these reactions.  Once informed and assessed, we work together to create a plan to eliminate these foods comfortably from your diet for a period of time. During that process, your body will reset itself.   Energy is restored, mental clarity returns and often, you notice that you’re FINALLY able to lose stubborn weight.  Yes, many use this test to lose weight, and many use it to correct a hormonal imbalance.  It is one of the best solutions to the most common ailments.  

If you are curious to learn more, make an appointment by contacting Debi Farley at 804.288.3927.

The Energetics of Food

Food can be measured in many ways–for its nutrition – for the experience it gives you – and the energy it creates throughout your body. You’ve heard it said “you are what you eat.”  Certainly, it’s true that food makes up the cells in your body, but have you ever thought the energy of food?

If we look at vegetables, we can see that they have a root, a CONNECTING point, and leafy part.  When we eat vegetable, we can enjoy similar energy.  According to Chinese principles, root vegetables grow down into the ground so we relate them to being good for the lower part of the body and helping us feel grounded.
Round vegetables have a more balanced energy supporting the center health of our body, helping us to feel steady and secure.
Leafy vegetables grow UP and OUT, nourishing the upper body and head, helping us feel inspired, light and youthful.

Here are a couple of examples of how food might impact your emotional health.

·         If you are feeling anxiety ridden, tense and need to lighten up, try adding in more leafy greens, which grow toward the sun. These foods are cleansing and provide lighter energy for the body.

·         If you are feeling unfocused, scattered and want to feel more grounded in your life, try eating root vegetables, which grow  in the ground and provide heartier, more sustainable energy than would eating a salad.

Root vegetables
Sweet vegetables
Meat, fish
Pressure Cooking
Leafy greens
Wheat, barley, quinoa
Raw foods
Gas stove cooking
Nut butters
Microwave cooking
Electric stove cooking
Factory farming
Organic foods
Whole foods
Local foods
Brown rice
Home cooking
Home gardening

It’s good to choose a balance of hearty and light foods, to maintain a delicate balance of focused, yet flexible energy.  If you’d like to learn more about the energetic qualities of certain foods and how they can directly impact your health concerns or conditions, call 804-288-3927 or email
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