Food sensitivity testing is important for these reasons.

Food sensitivity testing is important for these reasons.

Food sensitivity testing has a lot of practical applications in a medical practice even though most often it is ordered as per patient request. Functional medicine professionals can use a food intolerance test to successfully uncover the fundamental cause of health problems, pinpoint the reasons for what exacerbates a certain health risk, and even discover which dietary supplements are more harmful than beneficial. As a result, a food sensitivity panel can assist practitioners in tailoring their treatment program to each client – a strategy that leads to better results. Food allergies may, in fact, be the reason why a certain regimen isn’t working in a certain patient. Food sensitivity testing is often used as part of the 5R program for gut healing (The 5 R’s are Remove, Replace, Reinoculate, Repair, and Rebalance). By eliminating problematic foods, the patient is able to adapt to other dietary and lifestyle adjustments more rapidly and effectively.

Let’s take a closer look at what food intolerance is: The body may respond negatively to certain foods which results in a food intolerance (also known as food sensitivity). Frequently, the items eaten on a daily basis or craved are the ones that are causing the problem. Symptoms of food intolerance can be caused by a variety of factors, including an enzyme deficiency, as in lactose intolerance; sensitivity to particular compounds, such as amines in chocolate and red wine, which can produce migraines; or an IgG immunological response, as indicated by test findings. Food intolerance has been related to IgG antibodies produced by your immune system when you eat particular foods, according to research. Antibodies normally form complexes with proteins in meals under normal circumstances. Your immune system then eliminates these complexes without causing any harm. These complexes may be deposited across the body if the immunological or digestive systems are weakened, causing inflammation and a variety of symptoms such as weariness, IBS, bloating, migraines, or being overweight. As a result, your body considers the item to be a “problem” food. Symptoms might last several days or longer and are frequently sporadic, making it difficult to determine which foods your body is having trouble dealing with.

What is the likelihood that a food intolerance test can benefit a patient? Food sensitivity testing can help persons with IBS in several ways. The first and most evident is that it identifies problem foods. Those subtle components are likely to trigger flare-ups, exacerbate symptoms, and make your life miserable. Instead of being surprised by symptoms, you’ll be aware of which foods your stomach disagrees with and which it doesn’t. A Food Intolerance Test can also assist with complement. The immune system relies heavily on complement as it causes an inflammatory cascade that is linked to IBS, IBD, eczema, migraines, autism, anxiety, depression, and obesity at high levels. With the exception of IgG4, many types of IgG activate complement and cause inflammation. IgG antibodies account for the bulk of total antibodies in the blood. IgG food sensitivity testing is clinically important since pinpointing a patient’s reactive foods can be difficult because symptoms can show days after exposure.

Some of the most common signs of a food intolerance consists of:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Eczema
  • Fatigue
  • Fluid retention
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Hyperactivity
  • Mood disorders
  • Tiredness
  • Urticaria
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Itching
  • Nausea
  • Rhinitis and Sinusitis
  • Stomach cramps
  • Unexplained weight gain or loss

Are Food Intolerances a real obstacle when it comes to health conditions?

The presence of food sensitivities is a contentious topic, and there are many who frequently fail to acknowledge them as a contributing factor in health problems. However, evidence in the medical literature and clinical experience indicate to food sensitivities are being identified and treated as a useful technique for relieving chronic illness symptoms. Research has shown that some patients have improved their asthma symptoms after avoiding certain foods which showed elevated results on certain foods. There was also a study with patients experiencing diarrhea-predominant IBS on a bit of a larger scale where IgG antibodies against 14 common food antigens were examined in the blood of 77 patients with diarrhoea-predominant IBS (IBS-D) and 26 healthy controls. Food-specific IgG antibodies were found in 39 IBS-D patients and just 4 of the controls, according to the study. All symptoms, including stomach discomfort, diarrhoea frequency, bloating, abdominal distension, and general feelings of distress, dramatically decreased after four weeks on an elimination diet compared to baseline. A third trial had 30 migraine sufferers who were tested for IgG antibodies against 266 different food groups. For six weeks, the patients were randomized and given either an elimination diet based on their test results or a diet that included the foods with higher results. After a two-week break from one diet, the patients switched to the other. Those on the elimination diet experienced a significant decrease in the number of days they had headaches and migraine attacks.

What are the main reasons one should test for food sensitivities? Food intolerance testing should be used by functional medicine practitioners for a variety of reasons. The following are four of the most significant.

1.       Determining why your patient isn’t improving.

It can stifle your patient’s progress if they have a hidden food intolerance. It will be difficult to reap the benefits of even the most well-designed program as long as harmful foods continue to attack your patient’s immune system and destroy tissues. Diets are used in a variety of ways by practitioners in their treatment plans for their patients. A hidden food reaction can jeopardize a healthy diet plan. Almond flour, for example, is used in almost all keto recipes. However, if a patient has a hidden food intolerance to almonds, this is not the best option. Coconut flour, on the other hand, would be a better option. Another example is a gluten-free patient who does a lot of “healthy” baking with gluten-free flour blends containing rice flour. If the patient has a reaction to rice on a food sensitivity screen, this type of diet will hinder improvement, regardless of how good the treatment plan is.

2.       Avoiding incorrect supplements

Food intolerance testing can help practitioners avoid providing dietary supplements to patients who may have an allergic reaction to them. Many clinicians, for example, employ oregano herbal or natural remedies to treat patients with bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine (SIBO). Some patients, however, may have an intolerance to specific herbs and they would not only be unaffected by that herb, but it could even make them feel worse. Many spices used in various supplements such as the same can be said for other spices such as turmeric, garlic, and ginger, may seem harmless although can cause quite a bit of discomfort in one doesn’t know they have that underlying intolerance.

3.       It can assist in determining which foods are linked to depression and poor mental health.

A substantial link between the gut and the brain is becoming increasingly clear. It should come as no surprise that a link has been discovered between leaky gut, food sensitivities, and mental problems, given the presence of a gut-brain axis. The wheat protein gliadin can cause an overproduction of Zonulin, causing the tight junction barrier in the intestines to weaken and increased gut permeability (“leaky gut”). As a result, bigger molecules that would normally stay in the gut escape into the bloodstream, causing IgG-mediated food allergies. This causes an inflammatory immunological response and the release of proinflammatory cytokines, which can contribute to depression. “It is beneficial to examine the intestinal permeability utilizing as a marker, for example, zonulin and particular IgG concentrations against specified dietary components in patients with depression,” according to one group of researchers. In patients with schizophrenia, researchers discovered an increased prevalence of food antigen hypersensitivity, notably gluten and casein from cow’s milk.

4.       Determining the Permeability of the Intestine

Food Intolerance testing also serves as an indicator of intestinal permeability. People with a high level of immunological response to a variety of meals may have intestinal permeability. Large dietary peptides can enter circulation where they don’t belong when the gut lining is ruptured. They are recognized as alien by the immune system, which produces a food antibody and causes inflammation. Antigen-antibody complexes can build up in tissues, causing disease. Several autoimmune illnesses, including inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, autoimmune hepatitis, type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and systemic lupus erythematosus, have been linked to intestinal permeability.

What type of treatments are available based on food intolerance testing?

Consume Gut-Healthy Foods – Sugar and processed carbohydrates should be avoided. Increase the amount of fiber-rich, colorful, complete meals in your diet while avoiding foods that a patient reacts to. Probiotics and prebiotics are supplements that help the gut heal from prior harm and promote the growth of good bacteria.

Support for Digestion – When necessary, supplement with a decent digestive enzyme or stomach acid supplement, as well as chewing food completely and relaxing during mealtimes.

Gut-healing Supplements – L-glutamine is a well-known amino acid for its ability to repair the gut lining. Formulas that combine L-glutamine with other gut-healing ingredients, such as slippery elm, are beneficial.

Elimination and Rotation Diets — The elimination diet is the gold standard for detecting food allergies and is a common treatment for people with food sensitivities. It entails removing the foods that are causing the problem from the diet. This diet can be followed for a period of one to three months, or perhaps longer. The patient can reintroduce the food into their diet as determined by the clinician to see how they react. The rotating diet consists of only consuming the offending dish once every three days.

Anti-Inflammatory Health Foods – Nutrient intake might be hampered by a weakened gut lining. Supplementing with a nutritional formula can help to fill in any gaps in your diet and reduce inflammation in your gut lining. It’s crucial to ensure sure the formula you choose doesn’t contain any of the foods or botanicals that the patient is allergic to.

Getting a food intolerance test can help you get a more personalized treatment plan and better results for your patients. It’s an important tool in functional medicine, and it can aid in the implementation of your 5R program or other gut-healing treatments. Without the use of drugs, this test, in combination with an elimination diet and nutritional supplementation, can treat the fundamental causes of gastrointestinal and immunological disorders. It has the potential to significantly improve clinical outcomes. Your patients will be grateful!

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