by Dr. Craig A. Maxwell
Testing for food allergies can be a difficult process. There are elimination diets, blood tests, endoscopic tests, and skin tests; all of which have been proven a bit faulty and subsequently misleading. If you’re trying to figure out why you’re sick all the time, this can leave you frustrated and confused.
The best test for food allergies is one that goes beyond simply checking for the 8 common allergens. If you’re living with chronic pain and illness, it’s critical you receive an accurate food allergy test so you can eliminate your problem foods and return to a state of wellness.
Food Allergies Often a Cause of Chronic Illness
- Gastrointestinal Distress
Intolerance to one or more foods is a common cause of chronic gastrointestinal distress. You may experience abdominal cramping, diarrhea, constipation, loudly gurgling intestines, excessive flatulence, and acid reflux.
- Muscle and Joint Pain
When your immune system remains on high alert, it can cause chronic inflammation throughout your entire body. You may experience muscle and joint tenderness that comes and goes after exposure to certain foods or linger on for weeks or months.
- Chronic Sinus Problems
Another tell-tale sign of food intolerance is chronic sinus problems. Post-nasal drip, sniffling, blocked nostrils, and hay fever are often signs of a constantly-triggered immune system.
- Asthma-Like Symptoms
If you experience wheezing and tightness in your chest, it could be caused by a food allergy. Antihistamines and steroid inhalers may temporarily mitigate symptoms but they will not get to the root cause of the problem. Over time, your body will become used to these drugs and they will no longer work as they once did.
- Eczema and Psoriasis
Skin eruptions are often a sign of an over-active immune system as well as an over-taxed liver. Both eczema and psoriasis are autoimmune in nature, which means something is triggering your immune system to attack its own healthy tissue.
- Chronic Headaches
Studies have shown that migraine headaches could be triggered by wheat, milk, sugar, yeast, corn, citrus, and eggs as well as neurotoxic food additives like aspartame and MSG.
- Mental Health Problems
Continually eating a food your immune system mistakes as a foreign invader causes chronic intestinal inflammation and inhibits your ability to absorb essential nutrients. Over time, this results in nutritional deficiencies. Deficiencies such as vitamin D3, B12, and magnesium deficiency have all been known to cause depression, anxiety, and even mania.
- Chronic Fatigue
Under ordinary circumstances, your immune system is relatively stable and only attacks viruses and bacteria before they have a chance to make you sick. In the case of food allergies and intolerance, the immune system is always on alert, striking out at not only the food you’re intolerant to, but your body’s own healthy tissue. This taxes your entire system and could lead to chronic fatigue syndrome.
Health Risks of Untreated Food Allergies
Ignoring your food allergies or covering up the symptoms with prescription and over-the-counter drugs will only make things worse. Without addressing the root cause of the problem, you will be unable to achieve optimal health.
Your symptoms will continue to worsen and may eventually develop into a serious, more difficult-to-treat chronic disease.
These diseases include:
- Learning Impairment
- Type I & II Diabetes
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Thyroid Disease
- Brittle Bone Disease
- Permanent Neurological Impairment
- Intestinal Cancer
Standard Food Allergy Testing Often Inaccurate
The most common test for gluten intolerance is the AGA test. This test measures sensitivity to gliadin, a protein found only in wheat. According to studies, up to 34% of children diagnosed with celiac disease did not have gliadin antibodies in their system.
The Anti-Tissue Transglutaminase Test (another common test for gluten intolerance) is only accurate 40% of the time. Antibody tests are notoriously inaccurate when it does not coincide with damage to the small intestine.
Keeping this in mind, certain tests for gluten and other food allergies can be a hit and miss at best. I’ve had multiple patients come to me practically at their wits end with terrible symptoms and a negative test result for foods subsequent testing revealed a high intolerance to.
Even the Elimination Diet Has its Flaws
I have a great deal of respect for the elimination diet. It has helped hundreds of thousands of suffering patients finally learn what causes the terrible symptoms associated with food allergies and intolerance.
However, it can be very difficult to follow this diet. The potential for accidental exposure to a bit of the offending food due to cross-contamination, misreading a food label or ingesting a medication that contains the allergen could greatly skew your results.
Also, no matter how steadfast you are, an elimination diet will never tell you if environmental allergies are contributing to your discomfort either. You may find yourself removing more and more foods from your diet only to find your health only gets worse.
The Best Test for Food Allergies
The Alcat Comprehensive Wellness 1-Kit is your one-stop solution for discovering just exactly what your body is reacting to . It tests for 200 food intolerances, 10 food additives, 10 food colorings, 10 environmental chemicals and 20 molds that can activate your immune system and cause chronic pain and fatigue.
You cannot get more comprehensive, accurate information about how your individual immune system responds to food and your environment. With this test, there’s no need to worry about false negatives, fumbling with elimination diets or playing “eenie meenie miney mo” with the chemicals in your home.
Once you figure out exactly what’s causing your symptoms, you can eliminate the correct foods without concern for nutritional deficiencies as well as the right environmental triggers without feeling like you have to live in a bubble.
Here’s what to do:
1) Click on the Direct Labs logo on the opening page of AskDrMaxwell.com
2) Click on the ‘Order Tests’ tab on the top row
3) The Alcat Comprehensive Wellness 1-Kit is the second one down
4) Add the test to your cart
5) When your test arrives, visit your nearest LabCorp.com office
6) Wait for your results
7) Review your results with your physician
You will receive a complete report revealing your exact level of intolerance to every food and environmental trigger highlighted on the test. This document will also get you started with a recommended 4-day rotation diet to help decrease your immune response to foods you are less sensitive to.
If you would like a one-on-one telephone consultation with me, I can review your results and offer dietary and lifestyle changes as well as a nutritional supplement protocol to get your body back in balance.
Resist the temptation to ignore your food intolerances and just hope they’ll go away. Accurate food allergy testing may mean the difference between struggling with chronic disease and living a healthy, fulfilling new life.