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Vegan Brownies

photo by: Sunflower via




2 Cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 Cups white sugar

 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 Cup vanilla soy milk

 Cup vegetable oil

 Cup applesauce

1 tsp vanilla extract


[recipe cont. below] 

Gluten Free Chocolate Brownies





1 Cup Gluten-Free flour blend

⅔ Cup unsweetened cocoa powder

tsp baking powder

tsp salt

tsp xanthan gum

⅓ Cup butter, margarine (melted) or coconut oil

Cup brown sugar (packed)

Cup granulated sugar

1 Lg egg (optional)

2 tsp vanilla extract

⅓ Cup hot water or brewed coffee

Cup chopped walnuts (optional)


[recipe cont. below] 

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Los Gatos Chiropractic and Wellness Center

September 2011 Newsletter:  Allergies vs. Sensitivities 


It's our 7th Anniversary!  


All of us at LGCWC are thrilled to be marking our seventh year of providing natural health care options in our community. Thank you for the opportunity to help you achieve a healthier and happier life. We look forward to being your trusted wellness resource for many years to come!


Our newsletters and website are written to provide you with tools and information you need to pursue better health. We invite you to contact our office with any further questions (408) 891-8222.

-Dr. Kate Fox & Dr. Jennifer Walker 




Allergy or Sensitivity? 

How to Tell the Difference.


When any substance enters the body, it is recognized as either foreign or self. If the substance is tagged as foreign, the body's immune system will shift into attack-mode to protect us. This becomes a problem when our immune system attacks something that is either not harmful or something we are often exposed to. Trees, grass, dairy and wheat are all things common in our lives and shouldn't be recognized as foreign. When our bodies don't react appropriately to these substances, the result is food or environmental allergies and sensitivities.


Our bodies experience two types of allergic reactions. One is an immediate allergic response and the other is a delayed hypersensitivity. These two reactions are triggered by different cells that are made in our bone marrow. These "immunity cells" hang out in the tissue around blood vessels and nerves, and in our blood stream making these the areas that are most sensitive to allergic material. The GI tract is especially vulnerable as it is the main organ in contact with outside substances.


When our body recognizes a foreign substance, these cells accumulate near the substance and release chemicals such as histamine causing vaso-dilation and smooth tissue contraction with increased permeability to capillaries. This translates into basic symptoms, such as coughing, sneezing, itchy, runny eyes. A delayed reaction will bring on symptoms such as fatigue or bowel upset. Damage to tissues in multiple areas of the body can cause many of the symptoms that are responsible for chronic disease.




Food Allergies

Food allergies are the body's immune response to something in the food, typically the protein. Symptoms occur when the antibodies are battling the invading foods. Dairy products, soy, wheat, nuts and eggs are the most common food allergens.


An immediate allergic response happens when the IgE antibody is present reacting to foods like peanuts or pollen and grass. The severe symptoms are immediate and can include:

  • Swelling of the throat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Fainting or blacking out
  • Tongue swelling
  • Hives
  • Rash
  • Itching 

Food Sensitivities

Food sensitivities are a delayed immune response that occurs with IgG reactions. The delayed sensitivity typically occurs from 2 - 72 hours after the contamination. Because the inflammation can affect so many systems and cause chronic inflammation, the symptoms may include but not be limited to:

  • Sore throat
  • Decreased ability to concentrate
  • Achy joints
  • Skin conditions (eczema, rash, hives)
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Gas, bloating
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Headaches
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Aggressive or hyperactive behavior in children
  • Colic and increased spit up 

A delayed allergy response can also wreak havoc with your cortisol levels. A natural antihistamine, cortisol helps dampen an allergy response. However, chronic allergies can deplete the cortisol, making your symptoms worse in addition to causing adrenal depletion. The end result is a tired, irritable and unwell feeling individual all due to a delayed allergy response.





Environmental Allergies

Environmental allergies, better known as seasonal allergies, are a common complaint causing cold-like symptoms. These allergies can have both an IgE and IgG component. In fact, most allergens will have both antibodies present when they cause a reaction in your body. That's why you may not get immediate results from an over-the-counter antihistamine. It can take time for the other antibodies in the system to calm down.


When an allergen gets in and attaches to the outside of a cell, the antibodies on a cell will then react with the protein of that molecule. When enough of the allergen, or what we call in immunology an antigen, is accumulated in the body, we then get a major release of inflammatory chemicals. The mast cells will degranulate and release the chemicals they have been producing:

  • Histamine
  • Interleukin 1-13
  • Gama-interferon
  • Transforming growth factor
  • Tumor Necrosis factor
  • Lymphotoxin

If not treated, the inflammation caused by a simple allergy can turn into a more severe health problem. The inflammation causes an autoimmune reaction that can damage sensitive organs such as the thyroid. Ignoring an allergy or sensitivity can be hazardous to our health as chronic inflammation damages all tissues and organs.

Diseases often associated with inflammation include:

  • IBS
  • Crohn's
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • All types of Arthropathy
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Heart Disease
  • Cancer
  • Weight Gain
  • Auto-immune diseases
  • Thyroid conditions

Allergy Testing

Conventional medicine uses grid testing (scratch test) to determine environmental allergens that can be easily treated. However, if you eat dairy and get a stomachache, your grid or blood test may not show a positive reaction. The blood test must be specific for the IgE and IgG antibodies to determine both sensitivity and symptoms.


If any of your symptoms are not responding well to conventional treatments you may want to consider testing for delayed sensitivity. At Los Gatos Chiropractic & Wellness Center, a simple test can determine what foods you may be sensitive to as well as the level of sensitivity. With this information we can offer many solutions for inflammation to help you reach your full health potential.



 5 Tips to Get the Most From Your Doctor Visit


1. Create a medical profile and keep it up to date. Having your health information organized and handy will make sharing your medical history much easier. Include contact information for all your doctors, insurance details, dates of any surgeries or hospitalizations, a list of allergies, medications, herb or supplements you take (including frequency and dosage), as well as a detailed family health history.



2. If you're having a particular medical complaint, keep a health journal. Note your daily stress levels, exercise, and sleep patterns as well as the foods you eat. Then jot down your symptoms. Are they worse? Are they better? Keep a separate page to log your annual weight, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Looking at these results over time can show a trend that might otherwise be missed. Make sure to bring this to your appointment.


3. Do selective research. The key word here is "selective". Do your best to be informed, but remember that an afternoon of doing computer research may not give you the most accurate information. Go to reliable sites such as or and do your best to avoid a self-diagnosis. Instead, use that information to develop a list of pertinent questions. Bring the list of questions to your appointment.


4. Bring a close friend or family member to your appointment. This tends to make you more honest in answering questions (How many cigarettes do you smoke a day? How much sleep are you getting? Are you exercising regularly?). Your companion can also come up with additional questions and take notes. It's said that patients forget 85% of what they hear during their doctor visit before they get out the door. Having a friend with you can be invaluable.


5. Don't be afraid to ask questions that you think might be perceived as "silly". Are you afraid that your headaches are a sign of a brain tumor? Or your bloating could be cancer? Go ahead and ask! It's often as reassuring to know what you don't have, as what you do have! Looking for reassurance is perfectly acceptable.



Vegan Brownies


(recipe continued from side bar)


photo by: Sunflower via



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).


In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Pour in soy milk, vegetable oil, applesauce and vanilla. Mix until well blended. Spread evenly in a 9x13 baking pan.


Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is no longer shiny. 


Let cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into squares. Cook longer for a less gooey brownie.




Gluten Free Chocolate Brownies


(recipe continued from side bar)



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.


Grease 8-inch square nonstick pan. Stir together gluten-free flour blend, cocoa, baking powder, salt, and xanthan gum. Set aside. 


In large mixing bowl, beat butter, sugars, egg, and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. With mixer on low speed, add dry ingredients and hot water or coffee. Mix until just blended. Mixture will be somewhat thick. Stir in walnuts, if using. Spread batter in prepared pan with wet spatula.


Bake for 20 minutes. 


Let cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into squares.



Material in this newsletter is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat or cure any condition. It is not a substitute for medical care and is not intended to address individual situations and needs.