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What is not an allergy?

There are other reactions that can cause allergy-like symptoms but are not caused by an activation of the immune system. They range from toxic reactions that affect anyone who has sufficient exposure, such as food poisoning caused by bacterial toxins, to genetic conditions, such as intolerances caused by the lack of an enzyme (for example, the inability to digest milk sugar, resulting in lactose intolerance) and sensitivities to things like gluten (in coeliac disease). Symptoms can also be caused by medications such as aspirin and ampicillin, food dyes, MSG (monosodium glutamate – a food flavour additive), and by some psychological triggers. While these diseases and conditions may need to be investigated by your doctor, they are not allergies and will not be identified during allergy testing.

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