From celebrity testimonials and social media to the Free From aisles in the supermarket, our diets are being increasingly influenced by the world around us.
As we become more and more fixated on what we eat, perhaps unsurprisingly, people suffering recurring symptoms are making assumptions about the cause, influenced by the experience of others.
So called ‘nutrichondria’ – the preoccupation with foods perceived to be harmful, is a term that’s been coined by experts who are seeing an increase in adults self-diagnosing without scientific evidence.
But surely being more conscious about what we put into our bodies is a good thing? In the midst of a health crisis, which has seen the government impose a sugar tax, a little more self-reflection about our diets can’t be bad?
The dangers of self-diagnosis
When it comes to food intolerances, one size most certainly doesn’t fit all. Just as we all have unique DNA, so too do we have a specific dietary profile.
Foods that cause problems for one person could be fine for another, which is why you should never simply assume that a particular ingredient is causing you a problem just because it’s commonly perceived to be ‘bad for you.’
The issue with self-diagnosis is that it can lead to an unbalanced diet. Cutting an ingredient out of your diet, without replacing it with a nutritious alternative, can lead to nutritional deficiencies.
A dietary red herring
As well as creating an unbalanced diet, removing a food you assume is causing you problems without investigation, means the real cause of the problem can go undetected for a longer period of time.
Commonly, dairy and gluten get the blame when it comes to bloating and other complaints. But in reality, anything in your diet, from tuna to tomatoes, could be the cause. Without taking a proper approach to discovering, removing and replacing the food, it could be a long time before you get to the root cause.
Discovering the triggers in your diet
If you’re concerned that something you’re eating is causing you problems, you may be tempted to head straight for the gluten free bread but it’s better to be certain when it comes to understanding your personal dietary profile.
You may be surprised to discover that your specific problem foods are ones you’d never suspect.
A Smartblood Food Intolerance test is a fast and convenient way to get the answers you need to help improve your diet and your wellbeing. With our simple home to laboratory testing kit, you can find out the exact foods you’re reacting to and, with support from a qualified Nutritional therapist, discover safe and healthy ways to replace your problem foods to maintain a balanced diet.