Why test for a food intolerance?
Some people suffer from food intolerances – often without knowing it. In some cases, the symptoms are annoying and unhealthy in the long run, but they are also subtle and difficult to attribute to specific meals. It can then make sense to get a first indication with a test to identify which foods you might not be able to tolerate.
In theory, you could be intolerant to all kinds of foods. In practice, however, it is always the usual suspects that are responsible for a large part of intolerances. These common food intolerance triggers – and a few more – are taken into account in the cerascreen® Food Intolerance Test.
If you can use the test to find out a previously undetected food intolerance, it is important to remove that food item from your diet. This is more difficult with some foods than with others. Either way, you can avoid the cause of your complaints in the future.
How does the Food Intolerance Test work?
For the Food Intolerance Test, take a few drops of blood from your fingertip with one of the two lancets. Everything you need is included in the test kit.
The next step is to send the sample to a diagnostic laboratory. The laboratory analyses the amount of certain IgG antibodies in your blood. These antibodies indicate whether you are intolerant to one of 38 different foods. After the analysis, you will receive a notification and can access your personal results report via the online customer area or the My cerascreen® app.
What does the results report tell me?
The results report of the Food Intolerance Test shows for which foods there are large amounts of IgG antibodies in the blood. A clear table shows you how strongly you are intolerance to 38 different foods and food groups
The test cannot give you a definite intolerance diagnosis. However, you can use the results as a first point of reference to discuss a further course of action with your doctor, who may then carry out further tests.
Which recommendations will I receive?
You will receive recommendations on how to deal with the test results. It is important that you take into account whether you have any symptoms after eating certain foods. Some people have an increased number of IgG antibodies against a certain food in their blood, but still show no symptoms. If this is the case for you, you will receive recommendations in the results report.
You will also receive recommendations on how to deal with identified allergies and intolerances and how to make your diet healthy and balanced despite a potential food intolerance. We give specific tips that you can use to support your digestive and intestinal health.
Which types of allergies and intolerances will be tested?
There are different types of allergies. A type 1 allergy, also called immediate-type allergy is by far the most common type. Food allergies generally fall into this category.
These type 1 allergies are associated with increased concentrations of IgE antibodies. The cerascreen® Food Intolerance Test examines precisely these concentrations in response to 38 different foods. This will give you first indications of a possible allergy of the immediate type.
What do IgE and IgG mean?
Immunoglobulins E (IgE) and immunoglobulins G4 (IgG4) are two types of antibodies. They belong to the defence mechanisms of your immune system. Both IgE and IgG4 represent groups of specific antibodies – that is, antibodies that are specialised in defending against very specific foreign bodies.
If you have an allergy, specific IgE antibodies are found too frequently in the body. They trigger an immune system reaction when harmless proteins – for example from pollen, animal hair or food – enter the body. The messenger substance histamine is then released, leading to inflammation and the typical allergy symptoms.
IgG4-mediated food intolerance is an alternative medical theory that is currently not supported by scientific studies. According to the theory, an increased number of specific IgG4 antibodies leads to defensive and inflammatory reactions. The symptoms are usually delayed – up to hours or days after you have eaten the food in question.
Which foods trigger reactions?
More than 170 foods can be responsible for allergies. However, a far smaller number of foods is most frequently responsible. They include:
- Cow’s milk and eggs
- Legumes (especially peanuts and soy)
- Fish and shellfish
Allergies to various types of fruit, vegetables, spices and meat are somewhat less common.
What are IgG4 intolerances?
According to an alternative medical theory, high concentrations of specific IgG4 antibodies are a sign of an intolerance to certain foods. According to this theory, inflammatory reactions occur in the gut after the consumption of food.
This link between the concentration of IgG4 antibodies and the presence of food intolerances is currently the subject of scientific controversy.
What are symptoms of IgG4 intolerances?
IgG4 intolerances may only appear hours or even days after you have eaten the food in question.
Possible symptoms of food intolerance:
Gastrointestinal discomfort, especially flatulence
Headaches and migraines
- Whistling breath sounds and running nose
- Skin rashes
How can I treat a food allergy or intolerance?
There is no treatment to cure an allergy or intolerance to food. IgG4-mediated intolerances may subside once you have avoided the trigger for a while.
Currently, the only effective way to combat food allergies and intolerances is to recognise the reactions and avoid the foods in question.
If you have a food allergy, medication (antihistamines) can relieve the symptoms in the short term if you have consumed an allergen. People who have particularly severe allergic reactions often carry an anaphylaxis emergency kit with an EpiPen, which they turn to in cases of anaphylactic shock
Who is the test not suitable for?
The Food Allergy Test is not suitable for or is only suitable for certain groups of people:
People with contagious diseases, like hepatitis, are not allowed to take the Food Allergy Test.
People with a haemophilia blood disorder should not take the blood test.
Pregnant and/or breastfeeding women should only carry out the Food Allergy Test under medical supervision. The reference values and recommendations do not apply to them, so they should obtain recommendations on the test results from their doctor.
- The Food Allergy Test is not suitable for children under the age of 18.
The test is not there to diagnose diseases. For example, if you suffer from chronic diarrhoea or extreme pain, contact a doctor.