Over the past thirty years there has been a dramatic increase in both obesity and food allergy. In fact, the rate of increase for both conditions has followed the same identical track. For this reason, and others, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine have done exhaustive research to see if there might be a common cause. As it turns out a high fat diet is the answer. The rise in obesity is directly linked to the high fat content of “The Western Diet”. As it turns out, a high fat diet also can lead to food allergy for three main reasons: mast cells, gut permeability, and change in microbiota.
Mast cells are the “worker bees” for allergic conditions. They are the cells that contain and release histamine and other allergic mediators. A high fat diet leads to an accumulation of excess Mast cells inside the intestine walls. A high fat diet also makes the walls of the intestine more porous (or “leaky”) thus allowing greater penetration of food allergens.
Finally, a high fat diet alters the normal healthy microbiome towards one that is pro-inflammatory. This increase in total body inflammation promotes both allergic and auto-immune conditions.