Caused due to food allergies, the allergic tension fatigue syndrome is a disorder which results in fatigue, tiredness, and other cognitive problems. Here is a rundown on the causes, symptoms, and treatment options of the disorder.
We all have normal levels of fatigue that hits us through the course of the day. Most of us choose to combat the “morning sleepiness” and fatigue by gulping down a morning cup of coffee. The result is the alteration in the energy levels which is either too high or extremely low. What we fail to realize is that, in most of the cases, the root cause of the constant fatigue could be the food that we consume on a daily basis.
In the broad sense of the word, food allergy is an adverse reaction of the body to the food. As the body’s immune system reacts to the protein, starch, or food additive, such as the colorings or preservatives in food, there are many disorders which occur. They can range from mild annoyance to severe life-threatening anaphylactic shock.
The allergic tension-fatigue syndrome is a disorder caused by chronic food allergy and results in tension and fatigue. This, unlike the physical exertion related fatigue, is a permanent pre-exertion fatigue, which often requires a distinct effort or push to get you started. Both adults as well as children are prone to suffering from the problem. Although the triggering foods may vary, it has been found that milk, chocolate, corn, and wheat are the most common causes for the manifestation of this allergy.
Symptoms of Allergic Tension Fatigue Syndrome
While food allergies such as allergic tension fatigue syndrome are almost as common as headaches, these manifestations of cerebral and nervous system allergies are largely ignored due to the similarities of the symptoms with other psychiatric disorders.
The most common symptoms of tension fatigue syndrome are:
- Easy fatigability or a susceptibility to fatigue.
- Respiratory tract allergies and nasal congestion.
- Recurring abdominal pain.
- Irritability or the excessive feelings of annoyance and frustration.
- Insomnia Pallor
- Musculoskeletal aching and decreased cerebration.
The other cognitive difficulties faced due to the allergy are, memory impairment, mental sluggishness and an inability to concentrate or maintain attention. In addition to this, various degrees of depression may exist, as well as muscle aching and soreness or drawing sensations in groups of muscles
Diagnosis and Treatment
To diagnose allergic tension fatigue syndrome, the doctor may ask for a detailed history of the patient, along with complete physical examination and diagnostic blood testing. An elimination diet for six to eight weeks is recommended for an accurate diagnosis. During this period, antihistamines should not be taken, as the allergic symptoms may be masked and erroneous results may occur. In certain cases, the allergic reaction may exist in conjunction with other underlying chronic diseases like diabetes, hypoglycemia, hypothyroidism, and neurological diseases. In some cases, the allergy may be misdiagnosed for an unknown sleep-related disorder called Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) or Vitamin B12 deficiencies.
Once a food allergy is detected, the reactive food needs to be removed from the diet. It is found that foods like wheat, milk, sugar, soy, peanuts, corn, and egg can be a potential cause of the disease. Remember to check food labels for hidden sources of the sensitive food which may be contained in numerous ingredients, labeled differently from the allergic food.
As you start constantly monitoring your consumption of all sensitive foods, the symptoms may decrease slowly. Since food allergies are so often misdiagnosed, it is important to look at the symptoms. So, if you have been complaining of constant fatigue, bloating, and depression without understanding, it is time you met the health care practitioner for testing, of allergic tension fatigue syndrome.