Food sensitivities and intolerances can occur in us all.  If we’re symptomatic, we can be quick to relate those to our genetics or we may feel we’re destined to have these symptoms for life.  

The most common intolerances we hear about in food are to dairy and gluten.  Today, I want to shed light on dairy sensitivities and how you can feel better with just a few simple steps.

dairy intolerance, food sensitivity, your guide to optimal health

First, let’s talk about what symptoms you may be having from foods. Things like toxic weight, thyroid issues, constant headaches, imbalanced hormones, pain, acne, anxiety, and depression are all inflammatory responses the body can have when consuming intolerable foods.

There are also differences between having a true food allergy, an intolerance, and a sensitivity.  

A true dairy allergy means your immune system overreacts to an allergen (dairy) by producing antibodies called IgE.  These antibodies cause your throat to swell, vomiting and can be fatal. People with a dairy allergy should keep an epipen with them to counteract the response of consuming dairy, and they should not be consuming dairy at all.   

Intolerance to dairy can be genetic and mean that a person lacks the lactase enzyme to break down food (or lactose intolerance).  Dairy intolerance symptoms could be gas, bloating, or the slowing down of bowels, which people don’t always notice because it’s not as extreme or immediate.

Having a food sensitivity means that when we eat the food, we feel worse.  When we don’t eat the food, we feel better.  These food sensitivities can cause brain fog, sleepiness, fatigue, and can slow down pathways in your body

There are two ways to get tested for a food sensitivity that I recommend. In our office, we use Rocky Mountain Labs.  We order test kits to test food allergies and they look for food sensitivities to 92 of the most common foods. The other way to test is to eliminate the most common triggers like dairy, gluten, and sugar from your diet.  For an elimination diet to work, you must eliminate one food for at least 30-60 days to see if symptoms occur with reintroduction.

Dairy, in itself, is not a bad food. It has many valuable nutrients and in small amounts, can be good for you. It is, however, hard to digest.  If you’re going to consume it, I recommend going organic because it has less hormones in it.

A sensitivity to dairy could be due to not digesting the proteins well or the casein morphines.  If you are sensitive to the casein morphines, it would be nearly impossible to not consume some of your favorite dairy products, like cheese. So, in reality, cheese is addicting!  

If you are sensitive to dairy, you may experience a low grade inflammatory response like inflammation in joints or the bowel.  IBS is often associated with a dairy intolerance or sensitivity and not having enough “good” bacteria in your gut.  

You can correct the problem by eliminating the food but to rid yourself completely of symptoms, you must eliminate it for time because it has likely caused leaky gut, adrenal fatigue, and more. By continually consuming food you are sensitive to, your body is staying in “fight or flight” state.  In addition, systemic inflammation can get through the blood brain barrier and people with inflammation in the brain have higher rates of depression. Food sensitivity is causing the original inflammatory reaction which then travels and affects the brain.

If you have any kind of inflammation or symptoms, it would be beneficial to try an elimination diet to see what potential sensitivities you may have to certain foods.

In my program, Your Guide to Optimal Health,our meal plan is without dairy, sugar or gluten.  I promise you won’t miss these foods as we have plenty of delicious dishes and protein in the meals we have.

I know that if you’re experiencing pain, inflammation, or any kind of symptom, it may be more convenient to take a pill.  However, I want to highly encourage you to seek professional help and connect the dots on a different level.  And as a medical professional, I understand the fear in stopping a medication that helps you feel better.  I work to heal my patients from the inside out so they can gradually come off their medicine and live a long and happy life.

If you are interested in learning more about my programs, go HERE.

I would love to have you in the next round of Your Optimal Health starting in October.

In health,


Dr. Glenna