Seriously Stoneage

Hidden Allergies

sneeze It is amazing what you can find out about how you are when you embark on an elimination diet programme. Once you have got over the first week or so, you might notice some significant improvements in one or more health markers. This may well be because you have hidden allergies, or at least, adverse physiological responses to foods that you either didn't know about or hadn't noticed.

Below is a list of signs and symptoms associated with hidden allergies, and also relating to nutritional deficiencies that might be the result of hidden allergies. These are all symptoms and conditions that have been known to clear up or improve once the original source of the problem has been identified and dealt with.

Allergy, traditionally, has been held to encompass medical conditions that cause itching, sneezing or wheezing, thus:

Traditional understanding of Allergies

Almost always caused by allergy:

Asthma, hay fever, perennial rhinitis/catarrh, atopic eczema, contact eczema, anaphylaxis

Sometimes caused by allergy:

Chronic urticaria/angioedema, diarrhoea, food intolerance

But we now know that the immune system is very much more involved virtually all physiological processes in the body, and we can apply allergy methods, particularly elimination diets, to conditions that do not at first appear to be directly related to what was formerly understood as an allergic response. Often the actual processes that go on in the body and mediate these allergic responses are not that well understood, but nevertheless, they still seem to respond to clinical measures that one would apply to visible and apparent allergies.

Symptoms of Hidden Allergies Can Include:

Migraine, Crohns disease, rheumatoid arthritis, depression and other mental/emotional disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, dysmenorrhoea, fibromyalgia, endometriosis, as well as classic allergic conditions.

Food Intolerance

Individual sensitivity to certain foods can cause intolerance, which can have far reaching effects on the digestive system, and compromise our ability to absorb the nutrients we need from our diet. Here are some of the signs of nutrient deficiencies. Please be aware that all the signs or symptoms below can be caused by other medical conditions.


Sign or Symptom:

Can be caused by deficiencies of:

Cracks at corners of mouth

iron, vitamins B2 or B6, or folic acid

Recurrent mouth ulcers

iron, folic acid, or vitamin B12

Dry, cracked lips

Vitamin B2

smooth, sore tongue

iron, vitamins B2 or B12, or folic acid

Fissured tongue

Vitamin B3

Tastebuds at tip of tongue enlarged, red and sore

Vitamins B2 or B6

Bruising or enlargement of veins under tongue

Vitamin C

Red, greasy skin on face, especially at side of nose

Vitamins B2 or B6, zinc or essential fatty acids

Rough, pimply skin on upper arms and thighs

B vitamins, vitamin E, or essential fatty acids

Red, itchy rash on scrotum or vulva

Vitamin B2, zinc

Dry, rough, cracked, or peeling skin

zinc, essential fatty acids

Poor hair growth

iron or zinc


Vitamins B6 or C, zinc or essential fatty acids

Bloodshot, gritty, sensitive eyes

Vitamins A or B2

Poor vision after dark

Vitamin A or zinc

Dry eyes

Vitamin A or essential fatty acids

Brittle or split nails

iron, zinc or essential fatty acids

White spots on nails


Pale appearance

iron, vitamin B12 or Folic acid