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Food is something we need to survive. yet, many people tie their health problems to certain foods, or even to something in the food they consume. Reactions to the food can range from annoying gas and diarrhea to severe life-threatening anaphylaxis. Skin test can identify a significant percent of the food-related problems caused by allergy to protein.
Not every reaction can be tested by standard method with commercial food extracts. That is why we perform individual testing with prick-prick technique. You will need to bring a small sample of the food you believe caused a reaction – our staff will be prepare in-house tester that will be applied on your skin with the prick device. This type of test can identify other than protein-based food allergens (additives, preservatives, carbs and oils).
Here what we can test you for:
All skin tests can be done separately or as a panel. We use soft plastic sticks to apply the allergen serums – these are designed specifically for pain-free and blood-free technique that our staff members are using.
The skin test is very reliable and gives you the best proof of the cause of the allergy. The skin test is fast – it takes only 10 to 30 min for your immune system to show which tester it does not like. Now you can live allergy-free and enjoy your health!
There are many laboratory tests that can be done using blood (or serum). They are divided on conventional tests (approved by scientific society) and naturopathic tests (done by various laboratories not approved by conventional doctors). What is the difference? It is all about substances in blood that are measured. Lets discuss it.
Ig E food test. This is an immunoglobulin that is traditionally responsible for true allergic reactions (can cause anaphylaxis). Total IgE is an amount of these molecules that you have in the bloodstream. In general, that number corresponds to “allergenicity” – the higher the number the more aggressive your allergy. The total number is composed from individual highly specific molecules: egg IgE, shrimp IgE, wheat IgE, etc. Moreover, if you have environmental allergies to lets say cat or grass, the total IgE will reflect all your allergies!
For example, Quest Diagnostics can measure food allergens with ImmunoCap technology – specific foods or food panel can be ordered.
IgG food test. This is an immunoglobulin that mainly responsible for immunologic memory. For example, if you receive a vaccine or get sick with infection, that boosts production of the virus or bacteria – specific IgG (like Measles IgG, Tetanus IgG). If your IgG for something is high, for a doctor it means you are protected from this disease. Now, it is different when applied to foods. Naturopathic doctors believe that high levels of IgG are associated with food reactions and sensitivities. Is it true? I think science is not there yet to say there is a good evidence for that, but we see that these tests correspond to clinical symptoms and to skin test in people who have unusual presentation.
Direct lymphocyte activation test. Again, this test is used in research setting and by Natural Doctors to track food sensitivity. While it may show culprit to food reaction, it is expensive and lacks standards.
Overall, the skin test stays as a Golden standard! Why? Because it is a direct contact of a food substance with the body immune system – it really does not matter if the reaction is caused by IgE, IgG or lymphocytes – all of them will be present when the skin prick touches the skin.
Traditional skin test cannot directly diagnose Celiac disease because it is strictly immune disease (not allergy) and has delayed reactivity. Meanwhile, a panel of foods can demonstrate the abnormal gut immune response, and lead to discovery of hidden Celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
Food skin test sometimes can show wheat, barley and rye allergic reactions in people with gluten sensitivity. But it can be also negative if that person avoided gluten-containing foods completely.