We've all wondered before, what's the difference between an "allergy" and an "intolerance"? I have always assumed that I'm lactose intolerant but, after doing some research, I'm wondering if I could have an actual allergy...
Well, I browsed Dr. Arseneau's website at matsuallergy.com and here's an interesting post I found in the FAQ's:
What is the difference between food allergy and food intolerance?
Many people suffer from adverse reactions to foods. Some of these reactions are dangerous and some can lead to significant discomfort. A food allergy occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks a food protein and triggers the release of chemicals that result in an allergic reaction. These reactions are potentially fatal and require testing to identify the culprit. Food allergies are most common in babies and children but can start at any age even if the food has been consumed all along.
Food intolerance is a digestive system response as opposed to an immune system reaction and generally occurs when a food irritates the digestive tract or is unable to be broken down. This type of adverse food reaction is much more common and most people will experience this to a food at some point in their life. Lactose intolerance is an example of a common food intolerance.
WOW. How interesting (and scary) is that? Look's like I need to meet with Dr. Arseneau to see what exactly is going on in my body when I consume lactose! If you've ever had any questions similar to this, visit their website or check them out on Facebook!