How Healthy Foods We Love Became Toxic to My Family

Laura with her daughter Shannon who was born with food sensitivities.
Laura with her daughter Shannon who was born with food sensitivities. | Source

Food Sensitivities

Ever wonder why your doctor looks at you as if you have ten heads? Or feel as if you have a hang over, but were not drinking the night before? Ninety-five out of every hundred people are accidentally poisoning themselves and don’t even know it. How many have gone to your doctor with a headache and your concerns were dismissed and given a headache pill? Or a stomach ache and given a pill for your stomach ache?

There is not one cause for all your symptoms. Ever hear the phrase, food is your best medicine? That’s partially true. You can be eating everything “right”, but it could be poison to your system.

This is my family’s story on how food sensitivities and toxicities affected my family. It all began when my second daughter was born with a growing list of chronic symptoms including chronic colic, eczema that got worse with time, and projectile vomiting 6-7ft across the room. She was sleeping approximately 1-3hrs a night and crying almost 20hrs a day. She vomited a minimum of 12-13 times a day with such force that we had to change her clothes each time. I used to say she was the most miserable baby in the world, and as a mother I felt helpless.

In today’s healthcare system and most recent reform, your symptoms or body parts are typically treated. Treating body parts not the whole person can lead to misdiagnosis. You are not a liver or a finger or an ear. You are a whole person. My newborn daughter was treated symptomatically and prescribed several different kinds of medications. So my daughter’s colic was given one drug and her vomiting another and her eczema another.

I discussed my concerns about my daughter with my uncle, an osteopathic physician and surgeon in the Midwest and well educated in treating food sensitivities. I also expressed my growing concerns about all the medications my daughter was taking at the tender age of 4wks. He insisted she was “allergic” to my breast milk.

My daughter’s pediatrician was wonderful. However, the idea of food sensitivities was completely foreign to her. I mentioned to her my uncle’s thoughts, and she insisted it was no possible way for a baby to be “allergic” to a mother’s milk.

It was a mother’s instinct and persistence with the doctor that we uncovered another serious problem, a malrotation of her intestines, requiring urgent surgery at the age of 3 mos. I stayed with my daughter while she was in the hospital, day in and day out. One thing I noticed while there, my daughter’s symptoms completely went away 100%. She was no longer colicky. Her skin cleared up and was perfectly soft and supple as a baby’s skin should, and she did not have one vomiting spell. Upon return home, her symptoms resumed by the 5th day adding frustration with not knowing what was happening or what was the cause. All of her symptoms were full blown again within 2 weeks.

Food Sensitivities went undiagnosed and untreated for about 6mo causing many challenges in my family. In the meantime, my frustration grew into curiosity and eagerness to learn more. So what are food sensitivities? Food sensitivities are a type three allergy and is more commonly linked to chronic illnesses and diseases such as ADD/ADHD, obesity, headaches, mood disorders, stomach or intestinal issues just to name a few. If you suffer from chronic illnesses, irritability, nagging aches and pains, chances are your body is having a toxic reaction to certain foods you are eating - and you don’t even know it. What is one person’s cure could be another person’s poison.

I am blessed to be in a family of doctors and nurses as it was with their help we discovered my daughter had a food sensitivity to almost everything. My father, who is an osteopathic physician, stepped in to help. With his help, we he was able to witness things that my daughter’s doctor would not have the opportunity to see and even narrowed her food sensitivities down to sensitivity to the green chlorophyll in her vegetables.

We experimented with foods by adding a new food once a week and waited to see if any reactions would occur. I learned to read the ingredients on food labels like a hawk, and also taught me not all food labels tell you everything you need to know. My daughter lived on Cheerios and a special formula till she was 2yrs old. The entire time, still having major chronic symptoms every day and never eliminating her symptoms completely. Why? My daughter had to eat something and it appeared that she had sensitivity to almost everything including all of the formulas we tried at the time. She was also too young to do a blood test for sensitivities because a newborn baby’s immune system changes so drastically and so fast.

When my daughter was 2yrs old, we attempted to give her soy milk because she began to tolerate soy formula well. At the time, soy was used as the alternative to milk based formulas. We paid the price for almost 2 weeks due to the adverse reaction, which completely surprised us. How could this be? We thought. Despite the fact both products are soy, but the difference in how the soy is actually processed determined if my daughter had sensitivity to it by the symptoms she was exhibiting.


While engulfing myself in finding “the cure” for my daughter, I began looking at my own health. I saw numerous physicians for my vague chronic health issues who looked at me as if I was a hypochondriac. Nothing could have been further from the truth. I did have a blood test for food sensitivities through the hospital and again a few months later through a local lab with negative results. I remember the frustration because this was “not” in my head. My father who is also an osteopathic physician recommended I retest again. I was fortunate because an osteopath is trained in holistic and allopathic care. They trained to treat the whole person and not a body part. This time I tested positive for thirteen sensitivities including pepper. I was completely stunned because many of them I was eating every day and some were my favorite foods that I had to give up. The hardest was ice cream which took four years to no longer have the urge or obsessing cravings. And I lost my last 10lbs that I struggled to lose without dieting.

It was the pepper however, that stuck out because it is not an allergen you would normally consider. My question to you, how many food labels list spices in their ingredients but do not list each spice? The answer the majority. I challenge you to go to your local grocery store and with each item you buy, read the label and take notice if spices are listed individually or as “spices”.

I remember feeling how great I felt after a couple months and recall not “needing” caffeine to get me through the day. I had more energy than I ever thought possible. I knew that if I ate pizza, my favorite food, I paid for it for four days at least. Prior to knowing, I would stress out wondering what was wrong with me at such a young age. The challenge is, sensitivities can creep in so slowly sometimes that symptoms may not be easily recognizable anymore.

When I teach my workshops and seminars, I use the analogy of antifreeze quite a bit. Have you ever watched shows such as CSI, Ghost Whisperer, or Law & Order where the plot involves someone dying by means of poisoning by antifreeze? I use this analogy because most have seen such a plot and can understand it. When someone is being poisoned with antifreeze, they didn’t show acute symptoms until it was too late. Sensitivities can operate very similar. The allergens have to attach themselves to the organ and must have enough build up over time to create an allergic reaction. This is very different than Type 1 allergies that are more commonly known. One serious illness that has a link to sensitivities is Celiac Disease. I wonder how many people would never develop the illness if they were simply tested for sensitivities.

Doing a diet elimination does NOT work in my opinion. Have you ever done a diet elimination before? If you have, did you ever consider eliminating spices? I didn’t and most of clients don’t either. I have one client with a sensitivity to eight different spices. Try to eliminate that if you did not know to watch out for spices. The stress, anxiety and time to try to figure out what you eat and when and then try to figure out of all the foods you ate over the last five days, which are the ones could be making you sick is confusing and frustrating.

What I have learned over the years, is knowledge is power. Part of gaining knowledge is knowing what questions to ask your healthcare professional. Finding the right practitioner who can properly assess you, screen and work alongside you is utterly important.

I have gone through the gamut of different labs and testing facilities and learned a term called reproducibility. That means, if I drew your blood, and sent it to a lab under four different names, how many would come back with the same results? Reproducibility is crucial to proper analysis. How these tests are interpreted is equally as important.

Nothing can be worse than getting false test results or told there is nothing wrong with you when you know inside something is wrong. 95% of diagnoses can be made if the patient is listened to carefully. Someone has to believe in what they are saying. Is your physician or healthcare provider listening to you carefully? Listening is key. The “not knowing” what’s wrong with you factor is so paramount that stress levels can also be quite high.

Learning stress reduction techniques can also lead to better compliance and success. Some of my clients have been to some of the best hospitals around and one in particular was made to feel she was nuts. This same client tested positive with over 30+ sensitivities. I remember the day she cried in my office telling me she was so grateful because now she knows she is not nuts and now she has a plan to feeling better again.

Today, my daughter is ten years old and healthy. You look at her today and would never know she was as sick as she was. I have taken what I have learned from my experiences personally and professionally and made it a passion. Nothing is one shoe fits all in our office. Everyone’s challenges and needs are different and we cater to the needs not a certain check off list.

Food is the best medicine if it is the “right” food for your body. What most people don't realize is that the normally healthy foods they're eating can often cause a subtle but unhealthy reaction in their bodies. Like my daughter and myself, we were eating things that over time the toxic reaction built up and may have caused all kinds of chronic health problems.

Everybody's genetic make-up is unique. Foods that are healthy and nutritious for one person may actually be like eating poison for another! Eliminate certain foods in your diet that's causing toxic reactions with the food toxicity assessment and test and transform your life to a better healthier and happier life.

Our philosophy: If we can find the cause, we can find the cure.

Article By: Laura Bonetzky-Joseph, R.M.A, R.M.T.,Holistic Health Professional

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© 2011-2013 Laura Bonetzky-Joseph. All RIghts Reserved. This information is for general educational uses only. It may not apply to you and your specific medical needs. This information should not be used in place of a visit, call, consultation with or the advice of your physician or health care professional. Communicate promptly with your physician or other health care professional with any health-related questions or concerns. This article does not share the opinions of Healing With Spirit , Massachusetts Survivors Outreach, any of the places that employ Laura, places where she volunteers, or their affiliates. Be sure to follow specific instructions given to you by your physician or health care professional.

© 2011 Laura Joseph

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