All about food intolerances
Lactose and fructose intolerance is now a household word for almost everyone, and gluten-free products seem to be a panacea in this country. However, food intolerances are a very complex topic that few people really know about.
A food intolerance can generally be understood as an abnormal reaction of the organism to certain food components. Food contains a wide variety of components to which the body can react in an intolerant manner: For example, to certain types of sugar, such as lactose, sorbitol or fructose, certain protein components, such as casein or gluten, and to messenger substances such as histamine.
In the case of intolerant reactions, a precise distinction must be made between intolerance and intolerances.
Intolerances are due to an insufficient enzymatic digestion process or malabsorption. In the case of lactose intolerance, the organism lacks the enzyme lactase, which is responsible for breaking down lactose. In the case of fructose malabsorption, the so-called GLUT-5 transport system in the intestine is missing, and in the case of histamine intolerance, there is a mismatch between the histamine concentration in the organism and its degradation capacity by means of the enzyme diamine oxidase.
Food intolerances to certain protein components of food correspond in the medical sense to an allergy type III and are an immunological reaction. In this case, specific protein components of food, such as gluten or casein, are incorrectly classified by the immune system as a "danger" and the immune system reacts by releasing antibodies. This form of food intolerance can be traced back to a permeable intestinal mucosa (leaky gut), which can be regenerated through appropriate nutrition and intestinal stabilization.