Food intolerances such as lactose intolerance, histamine intolerance or gluten intolerance are a topic of interest in today’s society. We all need to eat to provide or bodies with energy and nutrients. But, just as every one of us is an individual with different needs; the foods that are good for you may cause health problems to someone else. Such health problems can be the symptoms of a reaction to specific foods.
With the variety of food we eat today, it is difficult to find out which foods are causing common food intolerance symptoms such as headaches, skin conditions, and fatigue or digestive problems. With a tiny pin prick in your finger you can now do food intolerance testing at home.
Here Nutritional Therapist Natasha Boojihawon talks about her health journey, and how she uses the food reaction test to identify food allergies and intolerances in herself and her clients.
Natasha: “A nutritional therapist is like a detective”
Nutritional therapists follow a trail of evidence leading them to the culprit. In my case, the culprit is the cause, or getting closer to the cause and drivers of my client's health condition. I love the chase - the troubleshooting, thinking outside the box, critical thinking, and, eventually finding what we are looking for. Sometimes though, the days are long, the leads don't manifest, my desk is a mountain of paperwork, and all I want is a quick and sharp answer.
When I found cerascreen, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. I'd finally found a company that delivered high quality, practical, user-friendly functional tests that I could recommend.
“Cerascreen makes the detective's work easier, putting a magnifying glass into the body, quickly taking snapshot of what is going on.”
One of the major barriers to my clients’ recoveries has been the cost of functional testing. Indeed there are comprehensive functional tests that provide important results, however the price is often out of reach, and few clients go for them. In the absence of doing these sorts of tests, I have to use a process of trial and error to determine what could be going on and try different things to see what works best.
What I felt I needed for some of my clients was access to tests that could provide an alternative way of looking at things at a more affordable and approachable cost.
With cerascreen, that’s what you get. Costing between £39 and £119 for a wide variety of tests and with 10 days turnaround, things are on the move again.
I can easily demonstrate why certain foods need to be eliminated. I can get a good understanding of the condition of the gut - cost and time effectively. I feel more confident about my therapeutic choices and protocols. My clients feel better quicker. Healing happens faster.
This is how I overcame two auto-immune diseases
I experienced Ulcerative Colitis, an autoimmune condition affecting the large intestine, from the age of 16 and at the age of 25 I developed iritis, another autoimmune condition affecting the eye. I didn't really change anything about my diet or lifestyle until I was about 26 when things with my health got really bad. I’d had a few hospital admissions, been in excruciating pain, had to take strong antibiotics for months at a time, and nothing seemed to be helping. That's when I started looking into nutrition, herbs, energy healing and changing my mindset. Within the year I managed to put both autoimmune conditions into remission - where they are now - 6 years later. But it's only recently that I've started a journey of healing my gut.
Gut healing can be based on the 4R approach:
- REMOVE - Identifying what foods, pathogens and stressors to eliminate as they are causing reactions and/or damage to the gut.
- REPLACE – Helping our body to optimise gastric juice secretion by replacing or encouraging stomach acid, digestive enzymes or bile flow.
- REINOCULATE – replenishing your gut with beneficial bacteria to create a healthy microbiome using prebiotic foods and probiotics.
- REPAIR – using specific nutrients to repair the lining of your gut
In order to estimate the condition of the gut, what foods need to be eliminated, the length of time healing will take, and also understand which are the nutrients needed to repair the gut – it’s a good idea to do a food intolerance and allergy test.
Here is what happened when I did the food reaction test
When I used cerascreen to assess my gut, the results were fascinating!
I’d suffered serious intolerances to gluten, dairy and meat, having ended up in hospital with blockages and pain. When my tests came back from cerascreen, it showed my problems with dairy and meat were still evident – although what I hadn’t realised was that I actually had a slight allergy to meat rather than it just being food intolerance. This gave me the kick I needed to go completely meat free.
My intolerance to dairy and casein was very high - which did not surprise me. I also had a very mild intolerance to banana and medium intolerance to soya bean which I could now do something about.
The BIG surprise was that I had no intolerance (or allergy) to gluten at all anymore – yet in the past – this had been the main culprit to my poor health. This, along with the other results, indicated to me, that healing of the gut lining was already happening (I had been slowly healing my gut over time using supplements, juices and food - but didn’t know to what extent it was working) and that I wouldn’t have to go in too hard with the REPAIR part of the gut healing protocol. I could probably stick to just using daily juices high in vitamin B5 like broccoli and kale and zinc rich foods like salmon, sunflower seeds, avocados, legumes, mushrooms and cacao. I could supplement with n-acetyl-glucosamine, for repairing and maintaining the gut membrane.
So, my journey with cerascreen begins, and as I use more and more of their products, I look forward to updating you on their efficiency, effectiveness and benefits from a clinical perspective.
About the author:
Natasha Boojihawon is a Nutritional Therapist, with a vision is to support people to live full and happy lives, free from dis-ease, pain, trauma and oppression. She is a social entrepreneur, creative director and producer and in 2014, she founded holistic practice Earth Clinic in Manchester. The clinic offers nutritional therapy, energy medicine, coaching, mentoring, lymphatic drainage massage and education.