The Spiritual Meaning of Food Allergies

The Spiritual Meaning of Food Allergies

Getty/Andrey Popov

What we react negatively to—even and especially the foods we eat—can offer us deep wisdom. Learn more about the spiritual meaning of food allergies.

Food allergies are common and can range in severity from slight discomfort to anaphylactic shock. Food allergies can be life threatening, and it’s important to work with your doctor on managing these allergies appropriately. In the meantime, it can be useful to consider what your food allergies might be trying to tell you on an energetic or emotional level.

Learning this won’t necessarily cure your allergies, but it might help show you how to support your body to lessen the effects of allergies or even change something in your life for your greater good. What’s the spiritual meaning of food allergies?

An Overactive Immune System

Allergies in general mean that the immune system is attacking normally harmless substances that enter our bodies. Our immune system is meant to react when unhealthy viruses or bacteria enter our system, but when it attacks our food, it’s overreacting in some way.

If our allergies extend to many foods rather than just one, and if our allergies are late-onset rather than starting from birth, this can indicate a nervous system that is also overactive. When we experience trauma or stress over a long period of time, the nervous system is always on alert, always expecting danger. This can prime the system to attack normally innocuous substances, like foods we’ve never been allergic to before. Our immune system is essentially our defense system, so from an emotional or spiritual perspective, we may want to consider the following questions:

  • Am I feeling “attacked” all the time by criticism or by my own thoughts, nightmares, fears, emotions, and so on?

  • Do I feel fundamentally safe in my life?

  • Has something happened to me that I was unable to protect myself from?

  • What could I do to feel safer and more protected in my life?

Food and Sexuality

Food has a deep connection with our experience of sexuality and intimacy. Food and digestive issues are so commonly connected to sexual trauma that I’ve started to suspect that IBS is a trauma symptom.

Even though we don’t normally think of it this way, food represents connection and intimacy for many of us. Our first experiences of food as babies would have necessarily come along with the experience of being held and soothed. Eating is a sensual act that requires taking something from the outside into the body. Food allergies can be an indication that something happened or is happening sexually or within the realm of intimate relationships that felt or feels unsafe, uncontrollable, or in some way just not right. Consider the following questions:

  • What is your relationship with your sexuality like?

  • Do you experience shame or fear around sex or sexual desire?

  • Has something happened in your sexual life that felt unsafe, wrong, or uncontrollable?

Symptoms as Messages

Food allergies can come with different symptoms, such as hives or itching, swelling in the throat, and digestive tract irritation. Each of these symptoms has a different meaning. Ask yourself these questions about your symptoms:

  • How does your body react to the food?

  • What do these symptoms do for you? For example, do they help you say no, stop, get help, get attention, or withdraw?

  • If the symptoms could speak in words, what would they say?

Attend to your allergies however you need to, but entering into conversation with them might give you some clues as to what your body, heart, and mind might need to help come back to balance.

Investigate the deeper meaning of your symptoms.

The Spiritual Meaning of Food Allergies

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