Food sensitivities and allergies are often confused for one another. After all, the term sensitive suggests an inability to process a food properly causing some type of bodily reaction. However, these two concepts are not the same. Not only are the reactions different, but the time frame in which they manifest are as well.
When thinking about food allergies, people tend to think “hives” or “choking.” Some refer to the feeling of their throat closing up. These are reactions the body has while the immune system fights the allergy-causing particles, and they usually happen very quickly.
Food sensitivity, however, can manifest up to 48 hours after the consumption of the causing food. Common symptoms include fatigue, brain fog, joint pain, headaches, and even bloating. So, while you may eat a certain food today, you may not feel the effects until the next day. This, along with the severity of the symptoms, is one of the main differences between food allergies and sensitivities.
Food sensitivities tend to affect approximately 90% of the population, while allergies are not as common. Similarly, allergic reactions can be life-threatening, while those related to food sensitivities, while still unpleasant, do not pose such a threat.
So, when discussing food sensitivities and allergies, pay attention to these points and you will be able to better determine whether you are experiencing an allergic reaction or a food sensitivity.