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Food Allergies

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How do you know if you should do a test for a food allergy? The million dollar question. There are so many messages and ‘special’ foods out there today that it can be hard to find the right information or even know where to start. Let’s make that a bit easier for you and start with a bit of information about food allergies. There are more than 50 million Americans living with food allergies which can appear at any age, even after having eaten the food for years with no symptoms. Food allergies are also very common in children.

It is not know why food allergies start later in life in adults or affect children.

So the good thing is that you are not alone and there are support networks if it turns out you do have an allergy. A food allergy is an overreaction by your immune system to certain food or a substance in certain foods. It responds by trying to protect the body by sending white cells to attack the substance but by doing this creates physical allergic responses such as dermatitis, respiratory problems, digestive or gastrointestinal problems and also life-threatening responses such as anaphylaxis (Throat swelling, itchy rash and low blood pressure) and vasodilation (widening of blood vessels causing extremely low blood pressure).

Other less severe symptoms you may feel if you have a food allergy can be:-

  • Stomach upset
  • Bloating
  • Nausea
  • Psoriasis
  • Slight cough

It is not know why food allergies start later in life in adults or affect children. There is no cure for food allergies but testing and avoiding these foods is key.

The food allergy test at home:-

Home test kits for food allergies are now available to buy. They are easy to use and test for up to 95 food antigens. All you have to do is sit on your couch, provide a tiny blood sample on a card. The finger is pricked with a lancet and then drops of blood are placed on a blood spot collection card. The card is air-dried and returned to the laboratory for assessment. Results are listed according to their concentrations, and then reported as low, moderate, or avoid. It is law now that foods have to state on their packaging what is in their food. Reading these carefully and checking which foods contain the offending substance can take getting used to but eventually you will get to know them.

Avoiding foods you are allergic to:-

Always ask in restaurants and let the waiter know about your allergy as sometimes the staff may not know the ingredients of every dish. And they may have used cooking utensils that have remnants from other dishes besides yours. Even walking in to certain food venues can cause a reaction depending on how severe your allergy is. The menu may say it is void of certain things but always clarify with staff what dishes will be safe. There are now really cool websites with “chef card”s that identify what you can eat and what your allergy is. Download one of these and carry it with you to make things more smooth sailing. I hope that has answered some of your questions. For any other questions you might have check out news pages and reviews and forums. Now…where’s my million bucks?

Food Allergies

Food Allergies

Food allergies are more common than they used to be especially with such a variety of food available. Food allergy symptoms can be quite rapid and a potentially dangerous condition where your immune system reacts to a particular food. By finding out which food you are allergic to, you can make the correct decision regarding diet and avoid what you’re allergic to. If you feel you have been affected by certain foods, why not consider buying a food allergy home test kit? If the symptoms such as bloating, stomach cramps, diarrhea or constipation are severe, then make sure you visit a doctor or health expert. Here is a brief rundown on some tests available including helpful resources that cover food allergies.

Products

Like many other home test kits, there are a number of food allergy testing products to choose from. To help you in your search here is a short information list of how to have a food allergy test.

Home Tests – food allergy test kits are easy to use at home. All you have to do is provide a finger prick blood sample that can be forwarded to a laboratory for analysis. Food allergy packs come fully supplied with testing equipment including postage paid returned packaging for the lab. here is more information on home tests.

Physician Tests – likewise food allergy testing can also be carried out at your nearest health clinic. It’s the same procedure used with home testing, a sample of blood being taken from your finger. Check here for more advice. 

Resources and Links:

American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology http://acaai.org/allergies/types/food-allergies