Food Intolerance and the Food Industry Taraneh Dean

There are many such anecdotes in medical history literature. What is noteworthy is that, unlike most other disciplines where scientific research starts soon after such anecdotes, in the food intolerance area there has been a large gap between the case reports and scientific investigation of the field. This has created opportunities for many people to blame food intolerance for a wide range of unexplained disorders, and for many years food intolerance was regarded to be on the fringe of scientific enquiries. The fact that for decades the diagnosis of food intolerance relied mainly on clinical history created many opportunities for individuals and groups offering all sorts of unscientific and bizarre tests for diagnosis of food intolerance. It is only fairly recently, with the introduction of double-blind placebo-controlled food challenges, that opportunities for more scientific approaches have been created and research into this area has provided us with good quality evidence. Just as high quality research evolved in the midst of anecdotes, the terminology in this field also evolved, and terms such as food hypersensitivity, food intolerance, food allergy and adverse reactions to food are used at times interchangeably. In the next section, some of these terms are described in more detail.


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