Detox Reaction vs. Allergic Reaction or Intolerance – Which one is it?

Understandably, it can be really frustrating to start eating better and still not feel your best. You might feel confused, discouraged or even angry that you are trying so hard and not seeing the results you want.

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

What happens if you start a new cleanse, supplement or detox product and find yourself feeling worse? Doesn’t feeling bad mean that you are having a detox reaction and you should “suffer through it?” And doesn’t foggy brain, fatigue, sugar cravings and rashes always mean you have candida? Definitely, no, or at the very least, mostly no.

Symptoms of a Detox Reaction vs. Allergic Reaction

Symptoms of a Detox Reaction vs. Allergic Reaction

I’ve been in this field for a long time and I want to share with you one of the biggest mistakes that people are making today in the world of detox and natural health: They are calling everything a detox reaction.

In my opinion, the most “over-diagnosed” and incorrect problem that people get labeled with when they’re eating healthy (especially high raw food or vegan) but still feeling bad is: 1) They have candida or 2) They are still detoxing. I’ll address the candida issue in another post, but I can tell you that in my experience of seeing well over 4,500 clients, 95+% of the time, both of these assessments are false.

Did you ever consider that you might actually just have a food intolerance or sensitivity to a food additive? Believe it or not, this happens much more than you could ever imagine. And, when you take the suspicious food out of your diet, you can feel better in a matter of days. Finally, you can start enjoying some real healthy bliss! Read on to understand the difference between a real detox reaction and a potential allergic reaction or an intolerance to a food or food additive.

What is a Detox Reaction

When your start to do a detox, as old, excess toxins flush out and unwanted bacteria, microbes and viruses die off, you can actually experience a temporary detox or cleansing reaction. Based on the work of Dr. Karl Herxheimer in the late 1800s, this temporary feeling of illness is known as the Herxheimer effect and is actually an intense sign of healing. These reactions can indicate that your body has started to cleanse itself as it quickly tries to catch up on the overload of toxins being released.

Symptoms of a Detox Reaction

  • Mild headaches, nausea, chills, sweating.
  • Fatigue, aching muscles.
  • Mucous, body odor, rashes.
  • Dizziness, weakness or even foggy brain.

Typical Length of a Detox Reaction

A detox reaction will last anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. If you are experiencing a real “healing crisis,” normally that will last from 1 to 3 days total. Usually after the detox reaction, you feel amazingly better, and you will not have that symptom again. For example, you could feel chills or nausea or intense exhaustion, then a few hours later (or after an enema), feel totally energized.

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What is an Allergic Reaction or Intolerance

True allergic reactions are much more rare than intolerances but they’re definitely on the rise (thank Monsanto and GMO foods for that). According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there’s been a continued rise in allergic diseases in the industrialized world for over 50 years.

An allergic reaction occurs when your body sees a food such as shellfish, peanuts or wheat as a foreign body or allergen, and starts to attack it by creating antibodies and inflammation.

Symptoms of an Allergic Reaction or Intolerance

The symptoms of an allergic reaction can vary from mild to severe. If you are exposed to an allergen for the first time, your symptoms may be mild. These symptoms may get worse if you are repeatedly exposed to the allergen.

According to the Mayo Clinic, The most common food allergy signs and symptoms include:

  • Tingling or itching in the mouth.
  • Hives, itching or eczema.
  • Swelling of the lips, face, tongue and throat or other parts of the body.
  • Wheezing, nasal congestion or trouble breathing.
  • Abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting.
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting.

If you have a food additive intolerance, such as an intolerance to Monosodium Glutamate, you can experience:

  • Headaches, chills, fatigue, aching muscles, dizziness.
  • Insomnia, sensitivity to light or sound.
  • Heart palpitations.
  • Fatigue (especially the following day).
  • Abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting.
  • Hives, itching or eczema.
  • Swelling of the lips, eyes, face, tongue and throat or other parts of the body.
  • Wheezing, nasal congestion or constricted breathing.

Typical Length of a Food or Food Additive Allergy/Intolerance Reaction:

An intolerance or allergy can last indefinitely, especially if you continue to eat the food or use the product that you are intolerant to. The problem with “intolerances” is that they usually have a delayed reaction time and they don’t give nearly as severe a reaction as an “allergy.” That’s why they can easily go undiagnosed for years. After a reaction, you may feel temporarily better, but if you eat the suspect food again, you will have the exact same symptoms over and over and never find yourself feeling better.

As you can see from looking at the above lists, it can be easy for a novice to label a food allergy or intolerance incorrectly and call it a detox reaction – the symptoms are almost exactly the same! In rare cases when someone is taking too many detox supplements or doing too many detox protocols at once (far infrared sauna, colonics, zapper, parasite cleanse, heavy metal detox etc.), I recommend to slow down the detox itself and determine the best order and pace of detox for the individual.

In the old days of detox, almost 20 years ago, no one was doing this stuff and the people who were really knew what they were doing. In the world of detox today, there is a TON of misinformation out there. Someone who made 1 green juice or fasted for 3 days is suddenly on every forum as the guru of detox. As with everything, this is a blessing and a curse at the same time. It’s a blessing because more people are getting out there and trying a fast or cleanse for the first time and that is simply awesome. And I no longer get booed out of a room for talking about coffee enemas, lol! But it’s a curse because people are being misled down the wrongs roads.

What kind of foods can you be intolerant to?

You can react to certain fillers in supplements (like malodextrin); chlorella in your green powder blend, Miso soup, seaweed snacks, vegan butters, vegan mayonnaise, and pesticides. I’ve even had clients react to whole foods like tomato paste, sesame seeds or celery. Once we get that food out of the diet, the reaction goes away and then we know for sure that we’re dealing with a classic food intolerance and not a detox reaction. How does it work? I can usually identify which foods you need to remove after 25-30 minutes of Q&A about your symptoms, current diet or recent detox.

If it is a detox reaction, then a few things to get you through a healing crisis include: a castor oil pack, detox onion socks, epsom salt baths, activated charcoal, liquid bentonite clay, extra Vitamin C, magnesium, distilled water, prayer/meditation (to maintain an alkaline pH) and rest.

For more on how to do a detox at home or how to navigate through your detox symptoms and start feeling great, book a private health consult with me via Skype.

How to Book Your Health & Nutritional Coaching Session:

1. Take photos of your eyes with a digital camera.
2. Email the photos to me for approval.
3. We schedule a time to meet via phone or Skype!

More on Detox Reactions:
What are the symptoms of a Herxheimer (Detox) Reaction?

More on Detox:

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Jennifer Thompson has been working with raw food, juices, smoothies and detox for over two decades to help people heal. Today, she shares her expertise worldwide, offering lectures, workshops, training and one-on-one consultations at various health and detox retreat centers. She provides Iridology Readings & Health Coaching via Skype and Phone to clients and continues to educate, motivate and inspire others on their journey of healing. When she’s not working, you’ll find her hiking in the mountains, power-walking along the sea or globe-trotting to a new and exotic health destination.
72 replies
  1. Karen
    Karen says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I hope your having a wonderful day!
    I wonder if you can help me. I am doing a liver cleanse/detox and I’m on Day 4.
    Last night my hands became extremely itchy and this has continued today. I have been putting Tiger Balm on my hands and this seems to ease the itching a little, but it wears off quickly.
    I’m not sure if this is part of the detox or an allergic reaction.
    The detox is a 7-day program.
    Day 1 & 2 – eat raw or cooked or juiced vegetables & fruits, drink water and 2 x liver cleanse lemonade
    Day 3 – drink juice & water & 4 x liver cleanse lemonade
    Day 4 – drink water & 4 x liver cleanse lemonade only & drink olive oil + lemon juice at night
    Day 5 – drink juice & water & 4 x liver cleanse lemonade
    Day 6&7 – eat raw or cooked or juiced vegetables & fruits, drink water and 2 x liver cleanse lemonade

    The liver cleanse lemonade is made of chilli/cayenne, fresh lime juice, palm sugar and water.
    Is it possible I’m allergic to an ingredient in the lemonade?
    Thanking you in advance for any information.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Karen,

      Are you used to eating/drinking that much citrus? It’s not uncommon to have a citrus allergy or intolerance. If you’re not used to having so much lemon/lime, that could be the issue. Of course, it would be best to consult with your medical doctor to be sure.

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
      • Jack
        Jack says:

        I simply fully agree. Because high acid foods are problematic and damaging to my skin and digestive system.

        Reply
  2. Donald Ferguson
    Donald Ferguson says:

    Jennifer,
    I have been raw since 1995. I would say at least 75% to 85%. I still ended up with 2 life threatening illnesses. I am not asking for a diagnoses just help in understanding symptoms I get. I have trouble eating food because I am very confused. I don’t have insurance and live on SSDI and a part time job. So having food allergy test done is not possible at the present. 1 of the diseases has been cured the Hep C but my liver needs to be rebuilt when diagnosed it was final stage. There probably are foods that I may not be able to tolerate, I don’t know. The symptoms I get are extreme lethargy sometimes bad anxiety and blurry vision. How can I find out and know for sure which foods that I shouldn’t eat? You see all the people talk about detox without a serious disease but none talk about what to do if that is where your at. It’s been about 7 years since my
    diagnoses I just would like to know if I have food allergies or intolerances that could be causing a lot of my problems? Thanks:)

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Donald,

      What are you eating exactly?

      Can you give examples (a 3-day menu outline would be great showing breakfast, lunch, dinners and any snacks, drinks or teas etc) of what you eat including both raw and non-raw foods? Also, specify if the food is organic, non-organic, etc.

      Without knowing exactly what you are eating, I can’t help. (I’m very good at what I do, but I’m not the Long Island Medium!)

      Reply
  3. Blake Haller
    Blake Haller says:

    Hi Jennifer,

    I’ve been cleansing/eating better for 3 full weeks now and can’t seem to figure out why I’m actually sicker. When I started this cleanse, I was just coming off of bronchitis and a long series of work trips where my eating habits were not stellar. So 3 weeks ago I cut out coffee, alcohol, added sugars, gluten, and dairy. I’ve been making green smoothies with protein and fiber supplements for breakfast and lunch then having clean meals for dinner. I’ve read through your comments to see if you’ve already answered this question and saw that you need example meals, so I’ll post those here as well. Sorry for the length!

    The first week I felt really good minus the normal detox symptoms – mild headache, some dizziness, basic stuff. It was gone by Day 4 and I felt great.

    By Day 6 and into Week 2 I started having a really severe allergy attack (sinus infection?) and my skin broke out quite extremely. At this point, I determined that I was allergic to the milk thistle tea (ragweed connection) so I changed to turmeric tea with vanilla and cinnamon expecting the allergies to clear up. They have not. My skin, however, is finally starting to get back to normal (it was clear before starting this whole thing) so I think it’s at least heading in the right direction.

    I’ve also added some detox baths and bentonite clay masks for my skin, which is helping. I’ve also maintained the prescription meds I am on for depression/anxiety (20mg Prozac) as I didn’t think it safe to go off that without talking to my doctor. I added Activated Charcoal about a week ago to help flush things away, but still coughing my head off, blowing my nose every 10 minutes, and really suffering from congestion, itchy eyes, sinus drainage, headaches from coughing so hard, etc.

    My smoothies have been:
    4-6 oz organic unsweetend almond milk
    handful of frozen organic berries (black, blue, rasp, straw, I change it up)
    1-2 cups of fresh spinch, kale, bok choy, or a mix, mostly spinach
    Protein Powder – either Arbonne, Shakeology, or Vega (I’ve now tried all of them to see if it helped)
    Fiber Boost – Arbonne or Purium (again, trying different ones to see if it’s the product)
    Occassionally, I’ll also add – pure MCT Oil, Flax Seeds, or raw sliced almonds for more protein
    ice and water to mix

    For dinner:
    Basic spices like salt, pepper, cumin, garlic, onion
    Tomato, bell peppers, zucchini, kale for veggies
    Lean meats like natural free range chicken, turkey, wild caught fish
    Organic beans (kidney, black, or pinto)
    For salad dressings, Extra Light Olive Oil, Apple Cider Vinegar, black pepper, salt, dry mustard powder

    I’ve had to resort back to things like Claritin D, Mucinex, and Theraflu the last 3 days my symptoms have been so bad. I haven’t had any of the rashes other people have mentioned and I’ve been drinking 60-90 ounces of water a day, plus the turmeric tea. No other beverages.

    Any insights you have are SO MUCH appreciated. I can’t stop coughing and blowing my nose and just can’t figure out what else could be causing this without also causing some oral allergy symptoms… I’m totally stumped. My husband says, “It’s the cleanse!” but I don’t know how to “back off” when all I did was eliminate junk and add healthy things unless there’s some kind of allergy or intolerance going on.

    Again, thank you so much in advance and thank you for just reading this far!!

    Blake.

    Reply
  4. Morgan
    Morgan says:

    Hi!
    So yesterday I started a 3 day DIY juice cleanse and today I woke up with the right side of my tongue swollen. No swelling was apparent before I went to bed. I eat plenty of vegetables regularly and do not have any food allergies that I know of.
    My diet went as follows:
    1. lemon and water
    2. apple, cucumber, lemon, kale, and spinach
    3. beets, carrots, apple, lemon, ginger
    4. pineapple, cucumber, and a mint leaf
    5. lemon + water, some cayenne, and some agave nectar
    6. celery, cucumber, lemon, kale, parsley
    7. almond milk
    8. chamomile tea w/ agave nectar

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Morgan,

      Do you usually have that much lemon in one day? If not, then it may be the lemon. Citrus is a fairly common food allergy. (You may have heard of people getting swollen lips from strawberry or pineapple before – this is similar). That would be my guess. Nice juice combos though, well done!

      My best,

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  5. Jason
    Jason says:

    Hi, Jennifer. My question is similar.

    My wife and I are cutting way back on breads, sugars, and dairy this month. I’ve done pretty good to steer clear, though I’ve cheated a couple of times. We’ve also started back with our vitamin regimen at the same time, but have included the Dr. Tobias 14 day Colon Cleanse and Liver Cleanse. The bottles said that they could be taken at the same time. We are also taking a multivitamin, probiotic, fish oil, Curcumin, and Quercetin.

    A few days in I noticed a rash or hives around my armpits. They’re not too red, but small bumps. I feel totally fine otherwise. Any thoughts?

    Thank you so much.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Jason,

      I’m sorry to say, but this product – Tobias 14-day cleanse – looks to be very low quality. Less than $10 for a 14-day cleanse should be a red flag right there. None of the ingredients are organic; that means they can and most likely are sourced from India and China. In that case, you can guarantee low quality at best and at worst some extra heavy metals in there to boot (a definite possibility). It also contains bovine gelatin – that’s going to be GMO, which is not great. But probably the most suspect ingredient in terms of hives and rash would be the rice powder. This is a high allergen ingredient,and if you haven’t taken it before, it can cause itchy rashes. Many unknowns and possibilities, however in this case I would put my money on an allergic reaction.

      That said, you’ve done really well to cut back on bread, sugar and dairy so definitely keep up the good work there! In my book – Green Smoothies for Dummies – I have an easy 3-day Green Smoothie Cleanse complete with recipes and a shopping list. This type of cleanse would be way better for you. It’s real whole food and still gives all the organs a well-deserved break since the smoothies are easy to digest and absorb. No supplements needed! If you are doing well after 3 days, you can continue for as many days as you like and just keep rotating the recipes.

      My best,

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  6. Theresa
    Theresa says:

    Hello Jennifer,
    Your blog is fascinating and immensely informative. I have dealt with food intolerances and avoidance diets for over 15 years; with more food logs than even my dietitian ever thought was possible. In hindsight, I was probably dairy intolerant from the age of 12 but didn’t know it so I was treated for acne (which I never had) with oral antibiotics on/off for 10 years. Unfortunately, my list of non-reactive foods continues to get smaller despite being stable on thyroid supplement. (Like 90% of my family, I am hypothyroid, specifically hashimotos.)
    I cook/prepare all my food and try to learn about sourcing (esp. meat).
    My list of non-reactive food includes:
    • Green leafy veggies – spinach, arugula and red leaf
    • Broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber, avocado, cilantro, lemon, limes
    • Olive (although sensitive to many brands that are adulterated), avocado and tigernut oil; gf beef lard
    • Salt, pepper and most spices/herb (although ??ing some) have definitely eliminated garlic and onion
    • Coffee (with olive oil and gf collagen powder), and plain black hot tea
    • Gf meat, organic chicken, pork, wild salmon; gf beef bone for bone broth
    • Paleochef brand mustard sauce and Tabasco brand green sauce (not homemade)
    • (I don’t’ appear to react to vodka but just avoid it and do not react to most wine but only have 1-2 glasses/year)

    My marginal food list (foods that have consistent, predicative reactions that are tolerable, and generally last 1-2 days only)
    • Carrots, pumpkin – seasonally
    • Cassava, Tigernut and Almond flour (worst is almond)
    • Tahini (and sesame seeds), chia and flax seeds
    • Taro – on a rare occasion sweet/regular potato
    • Quinoa
    • Cacao
    • Berries – no more than 5 strawberries – this is the most sugar my system can seem to handle

    Since I am highly reactive to rice I have to watch many supplements unfortunately.
    That is it for food. Breakfast is only coffee, olive oil and collagen powered, and lunch/dinner is from the list above.

    Of note, in the past when I have had severe food reactions that put me in the hospital, my liver panel shoots through the roof for 3 days. I have no underlying liver condition and since I now avoid problematic foods, those episodes have not been an issue for 15 years. Previously I had significant issues with yeast. For the last 10 years I have limited all sugar to an occasional small serving of berries, so my yeast issues do not manifest as symptoms (esp. when I went dairy free and am on thyroid supplements), but my saliva test will still show yeast, and when eating carrots, pumpkin, and berries I will briefly notice the white cast on my tongue, yeast signs and my boyfriend says he can notice the difference. Occasionally I do show some subtle liver (mainly skin) signs. Ironically for the last 10 years, I have never had a cold, and my typical labs look phenomenal, so it is hard to get any of my doctors to even address this.

    My main challenge is trying to decipher the reactions I get when I have trialed fermented foods, ACV, mushroom, coconut oil etc. (and resistance starch), as detox vs. food intolerance. Pretty much all the foods that are considered healthy for detox have some (moderate or severe) reactions. My reactions don’t always fit the list you mentioned above, either as a detox reaction or as a food intolerance though. All the while, I am progressively reacting to more and more foods each year and my skin, hair, and nails are horrible.

    I have been recommended to have a complete work-up using Cyrex labs to identify possible additional food triggers, and focus on liver support.

    Are there ways to introduce probiotic foods and know the difference between detox and food intolerance, meanwhile supporting the liver?

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Theresa,

      First and most important to remember is that #1) you are not crazy and #2) there is hope! Never give up hope, no matter how narrow or dark the tunnel may seem. Clearly you are still trying, so that’s a really good thing.

      Your type of case is something I’ve been seeing more and more of in clients in recent years, sadly. It seems like the list of reactive foods keeps growing and the reactions continue no matter what. Now I can’t say for sure, because I don’t know all the details of your history and to be clear I am not a medical doctor. I can only speak from my personal experience. In my experience, I’ve seen people with lists like you described (many of the exact same foods), and they are sensitive to glyphosate or even have glyphosate toxicity. This is a pesticide that is added to many foods, and even used as a desiccate on non-GMO foods before harvest. Combined with the glyphosate, there can be arsenic toxicity since glyphosate will uptake the arsenic from the soil and into the food. Certain mineral deficiencies can also occur as a result which in turn create a lot of stress on the liver and kidneys. It’s a delicate dance and a complicated maze to get out of, but it can be done with the right guidance and support.

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
      • Theresa
        Theresa says:

        Thanks!
        Your first comment is ironic. When this all started I remembered my doctor telling me intently, “don’t ever let someone tell you this is in your head.” I thought it was a bit bizarre at the time, but I have seen so many others (including those in my family) being dismissed for years, only to later be accurately diagnosed. My doctors have never been anything but supportive but they admit, usually after 2-3 years that they are stumped.
        Thank you for the mention of glyphosate, I will check.

        Reply
        • Theresa
          Theresa says:

          Almost forgot – if you do have any tips for me to determine/decipher detox reactions vs food intolerance, that would be wonderful 🙂

        • Jennifer Thompson
          Jennifer Thompson says:

          Hi Theresa,

          You’re welcome!

          For the rest, see me for a consultation via Skype. I can definitely help. For a case like yours with multiple symptoms, a coaching package is the best (3 years of doctors not being able to crack this, remember…I’m good, but I can only do so much in a 1-hour session! It takes time to go through all the factors involved).

          Your situation is very personalized; there is no “one size fits all” and most important is to have someone guide you through the maze of intolerance reactions AND toxicity reactions. It is likely that you are having a unique combination of both.

          My best,

          To your health,

          Jennifer

  7. erica
    erica says:

    Hey Jennifer,

    I found through some testing that I have a bad yeast overgrowth and had food sensitivity panels done (leeky gut). I am currently doing a detox by avoiding those foods that I tested positive and focusing on clean whole foods. It’s going great – but I have noticed that I am getting some face breakouts. I used to breakout on my jaw line and neck area but these are small bumps popping up at different places. Is this normal?

    Reply
  8. Jenny
    Jenny says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I have has swollen under eyes for about 3 months now after moving into my new apartment. On Sep 1st, I moved in. Sept 15th – I had swollen eyes. In Dec, an ENT finally found that I have allergic rhinitis and swollen sinuses that just won’t go down. After many medications, nothing is helping! New apartment and new mattress or some sort of a sudden food intolerance is the only thing I can speculate. Can you help? I have stopped sleeping on my new mattress – for about about a week now and have seen no improvement in my nose or eyes. I am at loss of what to do. Can food intolerances just start?

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Jenny,

      I’ve seen food intolerances start after taking antibiotics, after surgery (with antibiotics), and also after extreme stress (either physical or emotional). I’ve also seen them start when a person moves to a new country, in which case there are most likely different chemical formulas in food additives or otherwise. Hormonal changes can also affect food intolerances, in my experience.

      In moving to a new place, you can have reactions to things like carpeting, dust mites, glue behind paneling on the walls, and black mold hidden behind walls or in crawl spaces. Those are things to look at as well.

      Regarding food, the question at this stage would be – what is your diet like? Can you give us an example of 3 days of eating at this time? Not your perfect diet but rather what you are actually eating. Don’t worry – I’m not here to judge, only to try and help.

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  9. sonya Kennedy
    sonya Kennedy says:

    I did a 3 day green juice cleanse and had toxic reactions like the chills, depressed only for one day. I ate very clean the next couple of weeks now I have been introducing “normal foods” to my diet and I broke out on the back side of my leg with red itchy rash that turned into eczema.. I thought it was a spider bite but now my ankles are itchy and my inner thigh is getting another spot of a rash. What do I do??
    I am new to all of this stuff!!
    Sonya

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Sonya,

      What are you eating now? List what you are currently eating every day, including foods, supplements, superfoods, and any other powders or drinks. Provide at least 2 days of a food journal; 3 days is even better. Your definition of “clean and normal” can still be within the radar of a food intolerance or a reaction.

      Reply
  10. Jenny
    Jenny says:

    Hello Jennifer!
    I stumbled upon your website while trying to find clues as to why I have a terrible rash under my left armpit. I’ve been slowly having 5 amalgams replaced that I’ve had for about 30 years. 2 weeks ago I had 2 on the lower left quadrant of my jaw replaced and about 48 hours later developed this rash. I also began taking SyntolAMD 2 days before the replacement (for yeast issues). So I’m trying to figure out what the culprit might be. Mecury, yeast, syntol, or possibly the local numbing agent? Please help!

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Jenny,

      Impossible to say without having more details. Have you considered to stop taking the Syntol for 1 week and then re-assess your rash? Having a clear strategy is the key. After that, look at your diet – is there anything new or different that you’ve added recently, including things like a different salt, or even a new breath mint? Did you eat soup during the 48 hours that your teeth were mending? Or a bone broth? I’ve seen MANY rashes from additives in soups. Be open to looking at everything. Keeping a food journal is also a good idea.

      All the best in health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  11. LaShanda
    LaShanda says:

    Hello I took the detox The Cleaner for women about a month ago and I think I had an allergic reaction to it but I’m not sure. Have you had anyone to ask questions about this detox in particular?

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear LaShanda,

      I’m sorry to hear that. I have not had anyone ask me about that one, but I am very leary of box kits detox cleanses, especially newer ones. Too many people have jumped on the detox bandwagon in recent years due to the business boom in the detox sector, and there are way too many inferior products out there. Most companies are buying their products from China and India, and they never test the ingredients for heavy metal contamination. There are only a handful of companies that I would recommend, all of which have been doing this for more then 20 years before it ever became trendy.

      At this point, you can still do a lot of good by focusing your energy on getting your nutrients up, especially ones like selenium, magnesium, manganese, Vitamin C and B Vitamins. Most people are going into their cleanse already deficient in minerals, and this also creates more problems and reactions.

      Keep up the good work, and don’t give up!

      Reply
  12. April
    April says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I recently had to take some antibiotics due to a tooth issue, and then had to schedule an extraction. I started having intense stomach pain. It literally felt like a brick was slowly being dragged through my intestines, and only moving a little bit every day. The pain was so bad sometimes it hurt to stand or sit up straight. I assumed this was due to the antibiotics so I started taking a probiotic twice a day, made some beef and chicken bone broth and started incorporating fermented foods like kraut, gardenia mix, and pickles into my diet as well as taking a shot of apple cider vinegar mixed with pineapple juice in the morning. I try to limit my gluten ingestion as even though I haven’t been diagnosed, I think I may have a slight gluten allergy based on the “chicken skin” on the backs of my arms and thighs. When I reduce the amount of gluten I eat, the bumps get less and less. Typically I will eat toast for breakfast, a greek yogurt for a snack, leftovers from dinner for lunch and we eat homemade dinners, like roast, stroganoff or chicken stirfry for dinners and either a grapefruit or apple for an afternoon snack. Sometimes I have popcorn or a popcicle in the evening. A few days ago I felt very hot to the touch, but didn’t have a fever according to my thermometer. I went to sleep and woke up with a rash on my face that reminds me of baby acne. It is a bunch of tiny bumps, some of which have white heads and some don’t. Could this be because I have been cooking with the bone broth more? I read that I could get cold sores due to the aminos not be balanced from ingesting bone broth. I used to get cold sores a lot when I was a kid but don’t get them anymore. I ordered Lysine to help combat the cold sores, but it hasn’t come yet.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear April,

      Bone broth can be high in heavy metals. It can also contain glutamates, especially if there is “yeast extract” added. I’m sorry to say that I do not recommend it for both of these reasons. Why not try to stop eating it entirely for one week and see what happens?

      Reply
    • Juditha
      Juditha says:

      I had Arestin (Techtracyclines) put in my mouth by a tooth for the pocket to heal and had a severe allergic reaction to it. Now, the green juice I make actually makes the rash, bumps and itching on my face come back. It was so bad that my throat swelled up but I never figured it out and suffered like that for weeks. Then all docs wanted to give me more drugs which I seemed to have allergic reactions to as well. Now, I’m not taking anything and not juicing either to see if I can completely heal. I’ve been green juicing for 16 years. But lately, i’ve been doing too much, like 48 oz. a day!

      Reply
      • Jennifer Thompson
        Jennifer Thompson says:

        Hi Juditha,

        Try drinking more distilled water in the next few weeks to help your body flush out. I’m sorry that you are going through this and hope you are feeling better soon. Just out of curiosity, what country do you live in and what are the ingredients in your green juice?

        To your health,

        Jennifer

        Reply
  13. Michele
    Michele says:

    Hi Jennifer, the accupuncturist told me to drink lots of hot lemon water. I have been, stopped a bit and started again recently. Both times, same thing happened…i rashed out into small hives that are very itchy and red. Hydrocortisone does not help. The first time they were all over my stomach, I stopped the lemon hot water and it went away weeks later. This time, I just have one on my arm…Do you think my body does not take well to the hot lemon water? the first time, i drank probably 1-2 liters a day. This time, I reduced to 2 cups…thoughts?

    Reply
      • Jennifer Thompson
        Jennifer Thompson says:

        Dear Michele,

        Sorry to say but that doesn’t tell me anything, especially in the world of intolerance or allergy. There are THOUSANDS of food additives out there, not to mention chemicals in processed and packaged foods, even 100% organic. You could be eating just one “suspect” food 3-4 times per week to have a reaction all week, especially if you are intolerant to that food. I’ve seen people react to all kinds of stuff, anything from seaweed rice crackers to fruit herbal teas to sauces on meat or veggies to store-bought salad dressings to garlic powder to salt even. This list goes on and on and on.

        Best advice I can give you is this: if it keeps up, see me for a Skype session. I can save you weeks, months and even years of suffering. Usually I figure out what’s going on in just one session. In complicated cases that have been going on for a long time, it may take 3-4 sessions.

        Reply
      • Michele
        Michele says:

        yes for sure I am thinking that because seems they are directly related. I just am confused with the idea because hot lemon water should be very good for me…and i don’t want to lose out on the health benefits!

        Reply
        • Jennifer Thompson
          Jennifer Thompson says:

          Dear Michele,

          You can add fresh fennel to hot water in the morning and get just as many health benefits as the lemon. Fennel is alkaline-forming, anti-parasitic, good for enzymes and digestion and helps boost the immune system. I hope that helps!

  14. Kinaole
    Kinaole says:

    Hey, I recently went vegan, and I think I went through 4 stages of detox, but this last is the worst. The first one was strep throat, the second was spitting gallons of mucus, the third one was bloodshot eyes. These all last for couple days to a week at most. But this last one is im going through is hard. It’s really bad hives all over my body, I think it’s a detox cause I’ve never been allergic to anything nor my family. It’s been about a week now it’s still bad. Your help will be appreciated- Thank you

    Reply
  15. miranda
    miranda says:

    Hi Jennifer!
    So I’ve always had issues with excess yeast. Yeast infections, oral thrush, canker sores, etc. A few weeks ago I decided to start getting more probiotics in my diet since I read that it helps with that. The first few days I felt a little dazed but also kind of hyper…then after about a week of drinking a bunch of Kombucha teas and dairy free Probiotic shots I started breaking out in a horrible eczema rash. I also had small fevers and chills with a little bit of weakness. I finally went to the doctor in desperation and the put me on Predisone for a week so I’m hoping it helps but I’m so curious as to if you’ve ever heard of anyone experiencing a healing crisis from Candida that would lead to such a bad skin reaction? Thanks!

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Miranda,

      I’ve never had anyone get a bad healing crisis and worse skin from candida. In my experience, there are other things in the diet which can cause flares, even food additives, preservatives, fillers and normal food intolerances. The important question really is – what are you eating?

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  16. Danielle
    Danielle says:

    Hi Jennifer! I’m working on healing my digestion without the use of digestive enzymes, and one suggestion that I’ve gotten is to drink fresh celery juice as a way to naturally increase HCl in my stomach. Though, I’m dealing with a lot of severe reactions to fresh fruits and vegetables from oral allergy syndrome. Do you have any alternative solutions? Would cooking the celery before consuming it prevent it from helping? Thank you!

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Danielle,

      I’ve worked with people just like you, in similar situations…and what I find time and time again is that the oral allergy syndrome is not the cause of their problems. It’s just a label for a condition. The real cause that I’ve found in my experience is that the reactions to fruits and veggies are more related to heavy metal toxicity. When you reach a saturation point with heavy metals, your body will not tolerate even a small amount coming in any more. This creates a severe reaction in people, anything from stomach cramps to rashes to extreme fatigue (for more symptoms of heavy metal toxicity, read this article I wrote here).

      IF that is what’s happened to you, then it won’t matter if the celery is cooked or raw. It will still have the same heavy metals (most commonly would be arsenic and/or lead since they are naturally occurring in the soil but other heavy metals can be present from pesticide use also). That means you will still feel bad, and whether or not to cook or not to cook is not necessarily an issue at all. Your digestion may be compromised from heavy metals and other toxins (in addition to low HCL).

      If you want to work together on this, I’d be happy to see you for an Iridology consultation. In your case, I would definitely recommend a Skype consultation.

      All the best and healthy blessings!

      My best,

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  17. Maja
    Maja says:

    Hello Jennifer,

    My mother started to eat 100% raw food one mounth ago.She has Lupus about 18 years, and the most problem that she has with Lupus is skin. She has detox symptoms like cold hand and red skin on her face and neck. How long this symptoms can be, and maybe she is intolerance on some food.
    She start day with lemon and wather, than her breakfast is fruit like apple, bananas and greex smothies with spinach, banana cia seed and forest fruit.For lunch she eat carrot, cabbage,spinach, green salad with sunfower seed, cia, sesame, pumpkin seed. Snake is with dried fruits and juce with carrot apple and orange. what is your opinion?Thank you. All the best from Serbia.Maja

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Maja,

      It may be an intolerance to a food, but with such limited information, I have no way to know for sure. Believe me when I say these cases can be quite complicated and I may have to ask about 45-50 questions to understand all of the factors involved. There may also be deficiencies present. This case goes outside of what I can do for you in the scope of a comment form. I will look at all of these factors when you come to see me for a session and will be happy to work with you!

      Thank you,

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  18. shellie goodman
    shellie goodman says:

    Hi Jennifer, 2 mo ago i started Juicing every morning.. celery, kale, lemon, cabbage, apples, beets, lime, pineapple. About a week later developed a rash staring on right side of my neck and under arms..not realizing it was related to juicing. But i had a small break during thanksgiving and it went away..again i started back amd within a week the rash was back in full force which i cannot seem to get rid of almost 2 weeks now and started on neck..under arms..now chest..stomach..legs..i stopped juicing a week ago.. rash getting worse..i am now taking benedryl and its not helping much.. not sure where to go from here
    Thank
    shellie

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Shellie,

      I’m sorry to hear this. Were you juicing any new or unusual ingredients that are not in your normal daily diet? Also, did you add any superfoods or other powders to your drinks? Any other new supplements or foods that you were eating during that time (it’s not clear if you were only juice fasting or just juicing in the mornings).

      If you still have this rash, I would really recommend an Iridology consult by Skype so we can get into the right level of detail needed to solve this for you. I am helping people with rashes and skin problems all the time, it’s not a one size fits all but my expertise is in this field and I am very skilled at solving this strange mysteries.

      My best,

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  19. Catharine
    Catharine says:

    Hi Jennifer,
    I’m a pretty healthy vegan and have recently started having fresh and frozen fruit smoothies for breakfast and lunch every day. Usually banana, pineapple, mango, and strawberry, with a bit of pure vanilla extract. I’ve developed a red dotted rash all around my mouth and chin and don’t know what it is. The red dots aren’t raised at all, but they are everywhere. As well as red dry bumps under my eye. I thought I might be detoxing, but it is possible I’m allergic to a fruit or the pesticides from eating non-organic and causing a reaction?? I really don’t want to give up my smoothies but I feel so lost 🙁 it’s been going on for about a month.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Catharine,

      Both pineapple and strawberries are considered to be higher allergen foods, and many people can react to these with a small rash in the mouth area. Additionally, non-organic strawberries are heavily sprayed with pesticides, so you always want to choose organic with strawberries.

      If you have a latex allergy, then you would definitely want to switch out these ingredients since all of these fruits, including mango and banana, can be cross-reactive sensitivity with a latex allergy.

      Outside of that, it’s a good idea to always have VARIETY in your recipes and menus so you get a variety of nutrients (minerals and vitamins) into your diet, naturally. If you switch out the ingredients of your smoothie, you may not even have any reaction at all; however if you have a small intolerance to strawberries, mango or pineapple and continue to eat them every day, then you can easily start have a reaction.

      I would recommend that you start using fresh PEAR or APPLE in your smoothies. Pear especially is a low allergen food and considered “safe” to start with on an elimination diet. Add blueberries, 1/2 banana, and some fresh greens such as parsley or spinach, water, ground flaxseed & vanilla extract. Stay away from pineapple, mango and strawberry at least for 1 week and see if your rash starts to clear.

      Moving forward, use more variety in your smoothies and you should be ok. I’ve got plenty of yummy recipes in my book Green Smoothies for Dummies.

      Good luck and healthy blessings!

      Jennifer

      Reply
  20. Alicia
    Alicia says:

    Hi, I took the first dosage of the wild rose detox and have a rash all over my neck and chest. I must be allergic to something in it? do you know any thing about this common detox.?

    Reply
  21. saj
    saj says:

    Hi
    Thank you for good information.
    I was raw vegan for 2 months to improve my ecizema and constipation.
    But during this diet my skin problems got worse. Now im suffering ulcers too.
    Also my constipation got worse. Now i have abdominal pain and dairy sensitivity and body tingling.
    Im really confused with my condition.
    Before raw vegan i was a little normal. But now im sick.
    Please help me.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Saj,

      Can you please give me some insight into what you were eating during your raw vegan period when your conditions worsened? Thing thing about it is – I can’t know anything or help you in any way if you don’t tell me what you are eating. Give me 3 days of meals that you are eating, including breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinks, and any supplements, superfoods or protein powders. Thank you!

      To your health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  22. Robin
    Robin says:

    My family are on day three of a parasite cleanse. This is the first time any of us have done this (or any type of cleanse). We vary in age, 21-47, and in health issues, Hashimoto’s, RA, heart issues, etc.
    Everything has been going well (a few headaches and some slight dizziness), until today. Again this is day 3 of the cleanse.
    My husband woke up with one side of his face swollen. It’s from his ear to his jaw line…and only the one side. He has no pain.
    He has not changed any food. He is taking the cleanse supplements, a probiotic, multi vitamin, and enzymes.

    Is this “die off”??

    Thank you so much!

    Robin

    Reply
    • Audra
      Audra says:

      I woke up with the same condition as your husband one side same area no pain don’t know what it is glad I’m not alone
      Audra

      Reply
  23. Yasmine
    Yasmine says:

    Hi I started doing a detox program due to severe anxiety type symptoms. High cortisol, low zinc, iron ect under the guidance of a Naturapath however I started getting strange hypersensetive skin in aeras almost like cold burning. This is still going even though I stopped the detox and was wondering if its a supplement im taking now or its from the detox stirring things up and or possible allergy. I also have gone gluten free.

    Reply
  24. Kelly Berry
    Kelly Berry says:

    Hi Jennifer! I am hoping you can help answer my allergy vs intolerance dilemma.
    I started taking a 2 step detox from Cleanse Smart.
    The very first day I took one pill of the day time cleanse and by 6pm I had the worst, and first migraine of my life. It made me nauseous and lasted around 4-5 hours.
    I thought nothing of it and continued the detox – but the migraines became constant (3-5 nights a week) and 2 hours into the migraine I was throwing up. I finally stopped taking the detox pills and the migraines continued 3-5x a week for a total of 14 weeks. Today is week 15 and they are starting to become less frequent.
    I am still trying to figure out what is causing them, but more importantly what caused that first one. I seemed to have done something to anger my body and I am beginning to believe it was those detox pills.
    Any thoughts, advice, personal opinions would be much appreciated!

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Kelly,

      Did you start any other supplements, powders, or add any other new foods to your diet at the start of the detox?
      How many weeks did you do the cleanse and how many weeks after the cleanse did you continue to have migraines?

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  25. Manuela
    Manuela says:

    Hi Mrs Jennifer.
    I like you block and get straight to the point.For 8 months now I have daily/nightly hives which come and go.There itch,spread and drive me nuts.My Dr.doesnt know what to do and says its lifelong,and I should take everyday a pill 🙁
    I had pills.I exercise,eat healthy(veggies,fruit,bullets,superfoods,you name it.Tea,water,essential oils…I do it all.
    I drink red vine other then that,I am extremely healthy.
    May question is,could I get these Hives from the healthy foods I eat/drink?Could it be a from premenopause/Hormones?
    Any thought any help?
    Thank you for you time.
    Manuela

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Manuela,

      I’m sorry to hear you’ve been suffering with a rash. There is no doubt that an itchy rash can make you go crazy. I know because I’ve been there! It’s an awful feeling that takes over your entire train of thought. Having your mind back to not thinking about scratching yourself is even more important than the discomfort of the rash!! It’s even more frustrating when the doctors can’t give you an answer.

      I know you mentioned that you eat healthy food, and that’s great…but unfortunately it doesn’t really tell me very much. If you want my advice or help, we have to get into the ingredients in your food. The reality is that there are a lot of unhealthy food additives in so-called healthy foods, and yep…some of the additives are known to cause itchy rashes.

      Every person I work with is unique in what they are reacting to as there also may be some intolerance present too. You need an experienced person working successfully to heal rashes and not someone who is going to put you on a general diet for the masses. Taking out certain types of food is not enough. That said, you can probably still eat a lot of things that you like, including some occasional wine.

      I really need more detail from you in order to give you specifics on what to do, and more importantly…I need to know that you are serious in wanting to fix this and ready to make some changes. If not, we’re just not the right match to work together. In your case, I recommend the 4-session (2 month health coaching package). Can you see yourself being free from this rash forever in just 2 months? I can!

      To learn more about how I work with clients via Skype and email, please read more info here. I’d be honored to work with you.

      Thank you!

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
    • Carol
      Carol says:

      Dear Manuela,
      Sorry you are suffering from this. I am not an expert but wanted to share what my husband had that sounds similar to your situation. He would get welts first on his upper back and then always behind the knees. They came and went for about 6
      months. I have severe gluten intolerance and so I said try going off gluten. He did and doesn’t have them anymore except when he gets gluten accidentally.

      Reply
      • Jen Z
        Jen Z says:

        Carol I also get hives (red swollen areas) on my wrist and heat behind my knees etc. Sometimes my ears turn bright red and itch. I am allergic to wheat/gluten as well as Dairy sensitive (at times, not always and depends on what kind) Corn soy Pork. Manuela it is probably definitely in something you are taking or eating. I was a very clean eater when this diagnosis. came up. I still have sprouted grains such as ezekial occasionally and they don’t seem to cause the same reaction as gluten or wheat. I found this sight because I am doing a 3 week reset program and noticed hives right away after taking the supplements. Monday I thought it was soy related with a soup I made to attempt vegan (since it was healthier soy products sometimes I tolerate those) but now it’s wed and my wrist broke out in hives and my head itches after the vitamin. I notice there is maltodetexterin in it. I really can only use things that say free of….. so many things and Non GMO or I tend to react.

        Reply
        • Jennifer Thompson
          Jennifer Thompson says:

          Dear Jen,

          It’s fairly common to have a skin reaction (rash, hives, itching) to soup if there is “yeast extract” or “flavorings” in the soup stock. Even 100% certified organic and vegan. It’s always best to make your own soup stock from scratch using real onion, real garlic, real celery and real leeks plus himalayan salt. Malodextrin is a high glutamate ingredient and will also cause a reaction in people who are sensitive. This is one of the reasons why I go over supplements with my clients as they can often have low quality fillers or other stuff in them that also mess things up. I often find that it’s these things that are the heart of the problem and not wheat, at least organic non-GMO wheat. You can also be reacting to dairy products that are fed GMO feed (such as GMO corn) and reacting less to dairy where the animals are fed non-GMO foods. I’ve seen that a lot. Sorry you are going through this but it sounds like you are learning fast and on the right track!

          My best,

          To your health,

          Jennifer

  26. sarah
    sarah says:

    I was wondering how you helped Brenda with her blistering rash/boils. I had a similar reaction after eating too much cilantro blended into green smoothies. I guess the cilantro did pull heavy metals out of my tissues, but it pulled out so much my body wasn’t able to wash it all out. Two years later I am still dealing with the boils/blisters, whatever they are. Do you think taking charcoal powder in the mornings would help??

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Dear Sarah,

      Having blisters or boils for TWO YEARS is not happening from too many cilantro smoothies. Certainly t’s possible (although not likely) that excess cilantro could have triggered some stress to your body in terms of pushing out toxins BUT there is more to this story than that. Taking charcoal powder at this point is only a bandaid. It will not fix this.

      After 2 years of suffering I am sure you are ready and committed to get to the bottom of this!

      I work with MANY people exactly like you who have detoxed themselves into a corner and don’t know how to get out! It’s ok! I can help. But you need to be ready to do this. A quick comment Q&A is not the way to solve this. We need to crack into this in a serious way in order to fix you and get you back to an excellent state of health. AND we have to talk about what you EAT…since that is the key.

      Contact me directly by email and let’s book you for an Iridology consultation by Skype.

      Don’t waste more time. 2 years is long enough to suffer and I’m sure you want your life back!!

      My best,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  27. Louise
    Louise says:

    Hi Jennifer thanks for your information on detoxing and allergies, I found it helpful. I started taking chlorella, initially fine and 2 weeks later had severe vomiting, like nothing I had experienced before. I stopped the chlorella and was fine. Then I tried again 2 weeks later and vomited badly again. So I will not take chlorella again. Thank you Louise S.

    Reply
    • Jennifer Thompson
      Jennifer Thompson says:

      Hi Louise,

      I’m really glad you decided to stop taking the chlorella and not push yourself through a “so-called” detox reaction. Clearly your body just doesn’t tolerate chlorella, and that’s ok!!

      Keep up the good work and wishing you the best in health,

      Jennifer

      Reply
  28. Ognjen
    Ognjen says:

    I just wanted to say thank you for the work you do.I myself have made it my mission to make all the Sheeple out there aware of the dangers of toxic food. I was sick fat and dying before I stated to educate myself on how to be well. I am happy to say that my family & myself are doing great now. Human Beings living life; instead of Sheeple letting life live us. Health, Happiness & Much Love

    Reply
  29. Brenda
    Brenda says:

    Hi,

    I can’t tell if I’m having a severe healing crisis/detox or if it’s an allergic reaction to something. I do not have any real food allergies that I know of.

    My symptoms: I got the flu like symptoms, etc which I just got over – they did last about 3 days or so… I felt genuinely sick except there was no fever. I also developed a rash right before I got “sick” and it has now blistered (pretty unsightly). I also have swollen groin lymph nodes. The rash is in several places on my right thigh and buttock. The blisters tingle from time to time.

    I had not intended to actually detox. I started taking msm at 1 x 1000mg pill per day for hair nails skin etc. I also started a new daily multi vitamin that day which it turns out had msm in it as well. Also I started doing wheatgrass the next day and eating lots of cilantro (because I heard cilantro was good at pulling metals).
    Well, about two weeks after this I started doing 1 x 1000mg two times a day for a few days until I started getting symptoms.

    Anyhow, when I was younger I did unfortunately fall into the wrong crowd and so I have done several street drugs and a lot of alcohol. I also just quit coffee of which I was not a heavy user.

    I have stopped everything except I still take the daily multi vitamin with the 150mg of msm in it. When I realized Msm does a detox I increased my water intake.

    Please – any kind of info or insight would be helpful. These blisters are super annoying and at times painful not to mention unsightly.

    Reply

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