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    Food Allergy/Sensitivity and Reflux?
    sgbl88 posted:
    Dr. Metz

    Can a food allergy or sensitivity trigger acid reflux? Specifically red dye 40. Every time I have much of it my reflux acts up triggering my asthma. Last week I had to have a neb treatment with O2 at my allergist's office as a result. I am really thinking that a large part of my asthma is reflux related, but not all of it.

    This is also happening with corn flakes and pop corn.

    Any thoughts apreciated.

    Aqua14 responded:
    Hi Sonya, I'm not responding to your question (because you asked Dr. Metz, and anyway I can't guess at the answer) but just wanted to sympathize with you. Since I quit drinking coffee a couple of weeks ago I have noticed my asthma improving quite a bit, so I have seen first-hand how reflux can greatly affect asthma.

    Just a question because I'm curious -- what kind of food or drink is the red dye #40 in?

    So I hope that you are able to pinpoint and eliminate all your reflux triggers and get better asthma control as a result!

    Take care.

    It's never too late to be what you might have been. ~ George Eliot. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
    sgbl88 replied to Aqua14's response:
    Thanks Judy,

    I know that just because something is addressed to the expert that doesn't mean that others shouldn't/won't reply. I did that because I really would like his input this time, but all input is very welcome.

    I replaced chocolate with Twizzlers. Then the grocery store was out of my favorite tea so I got an instant mix to try.

    Pop corn will also trigger ny reflux, but I find that easier to avoid.

    I really will have to try giving up tea, but I just have to have something to wake me up in the morning. My brain stays in a fog until noon if I don't, and I get plenty of sleep. I am just not a morning person, but I can function well past midnight if I want to.

    I did set up an apointment today with a GI for a consult. I have a referal for a scope to a different one, but he wouldn't see me before the procedure, and I was REALLY uncomfortable with that.

    FYI: allergy re-testing is rescheduled for June 17th and I am in a flare, and have been for several weeks. I started anitbiotics Friday, May 21, started coughing up blood the next day. That continued all last week. I was in contact with my allergist and GP through that. Then on Friday when I reported in the assistant head nurse said you need to come in and transferred me to the receptionist to make an apt. Then the head nurse called and said, "Don't wait for your apointment. Come on in now." Needless to say my BP was HIGH, especially when it mine is normally low. I got treated to a neb with O2. The O2 through me for a loop. That was a first. I am still coughing gunk up and really wanting this over so that I can get that testing done. Whatever is outside is really knocking me down, and I want to know what it is. The reflux is just a part of the problem right now. Every time I step outside my head fills up with stuff and then you know the rest of the story. The reflux is just a part of the problem.

    Thanks for the encouragement.
    Amelia_WebMD_Staff replied to sgbl88's response:
    Hi Sonya!

    I am so sorry about your reactions and your awful week!

    I am sure that you have read the WebMD Allergies Guide to Food Allergy and Food Intolerance, but here is the link:


    It does state that, "Food allergies involve two features of the human immune response. One is the production of immunoglobulin E (IgE), a type of protein called an antibody that circulates through the blood. The other is the mast cell, a specific cell that occurs in all body tissues but is especially common in areas of the body that are typical sites of allergic reactions, including the nose and throat, lungs, skin, and gastrointestinal tract."

    It sounds like your reactions are with the GI tract, which often results in diarrhea or abdominal pain, but I don't see why GERD couldn't be a result as well. (Of course, I am not a medical professional so this is just my opinion.)

    I also found this WebMD video where scientists are doing research on the relationship of Asthma and Acid Reflux. One woman was treated for her acid reflux and it ended up helping her asthma as well. Cross your fingers:)


    It also sounds like you are having a corn allergy, which is very common these days and there are sites all over the internet as well as cook books that can help you find an alternative diet. (I am sure that you know this as well.) Can you eat corn on the cob?

    Keep us updated on your status and best of luck at your next appointment! I enjoy hearing from you and hope we can all work together to help you and others become more comfortable for the summer:)
    Best Wishes! Amelia
    sgbl88 replied to Amelia_WebMD_Staff's response:
    Thank you, Amelia,

    haha... trying firefox since ie is not working. We'll see how I like it.

    I am feeling much better now. Still trigger happy, but that is normal after a flare.

    I did start taking a good pro-biotic again. Maybe with the anti-biotic I was on, I needed some good bacteria back in my system to digest food. My reflux has improved a lot since I started taking them again. It's just not 1005 gone yet.

    I have an apt with a GI in early July. He was recommended by my allergist who does nothing lightly. If she recommends someone, they live up to her standards so I am sure they are quite good. He has a digestive diseases institute, so... Hopefully he is really good.

    I am hoping that getting my reflux under better control will greatly help my asthma. We will see.

    I think I have checked out the food allergy guide, but I don't think I have to check out the reflux video though.

    I can eat corn on the cob or cut from the cob. I can eat tortilla chips. I am only having issues with corn flakes and popped corn or some corn chips as in Frittos. Weird, huh?

    I am liking the spell check feature. But I have to figure out how to bookmark or better yet make BUTTONS!!! I do miss my buttons.

    Thanks again.
    Gregory M Metz, MD replied to sgbl88's response:

    Sorried for the delayed reply, I am now able to log in and post. There are many potential adverse reactions to foods that can lead to symptoms. Allergic reactions that are IgE-mediated (allergic antibody) typically cause immediate symptoms such as itching, hives, swelling of lips/tongue and/or anaphylaxis. These type of reactions occurs with each exposure to the food. However, there are other ways food/additives can lead to symptoms that are non-IgE mediated. Acid reflux can contribute to asthma symptoms as well. Often, controlling acid reflux is an important part to aggressive asthma therapy. Hope this helps.
    sgbl88 replied to Gregory M Metz, MD's response:
    Thank you Dr. Metz.

    I assume you were a victim of the Internet Explorer and Reply feature glitch earlier this week.

    You indicated that non-IgE mediated symtoms differ from IgE mediated ones. You listed the IgE mediated reactions, but what are the non-IgE mediated reactions? Could acid reflux be one of those?

    I finally remembered to ask my allergist's nurses about possible food allergy, and the allergist came back asking if I had ever had food allergy testing done, which I never have. I will see next week if she plans on doing that.

    Believe me! Aggressive acid reflux is a part of my therapy. I did add a good pro-biotic after I went off of anti-biotics and my reflux has improved a lot.

    Have a great week.

    Gregory M Metz, MD replied to sgbl88's response:
    IgE-mediated reactions are the type that cause typical allergic reactions such as hives, swelling, nausea, vomiting or anaphylaxis. Non-IgE mediated adverse food reactions constitute those reactions that are not caused by allergic antibodies. They can include food reactions due to inability to break down certain foods in the body (like lactose intolerance), side effects from the food itself (like chocolate, coffee and spicy foods making acid reflux worse), or other food intolerances. Keep us updated on your condition.
    sgbl88 replied to Gregory M Metz, MD's response:
    Thank you again Dr. Metz.

    I know you can't be specific about my case, but in general is acid reflux a possible symptom of non-IgE mediated alergic responses. I am aware of IgE responses. I am on Xolair. I just need to know about the non-IgE mediated reactions, specifically if acid reflux can be one of them.

    Thank you.

    LadyAlligator responded:
    My son had severe asthma when he was younger. I nearly lost him when he was in the 4th grade. It was then I decided that the inhalers and asthma treatments were not good enough. I took him to Salt Lake to a PA that practiced both western medicine and homeopathic. For about $200 we did a test called EDT (Electro Dermo Testing). We learned that he had several allergies mostly dairy products. The gave him some homeopathic drops that had to be given strictly for 6 weeks.

    He is now in the 11th grade and HAS NOT had one asthma attack since that treatment. I am so grateful for this miracle in our lives.

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