There are many types of allergies in the population. A common one is a food allergy. Do you have a food allergy? If not, do you know anyone with a food allergy? What type of allergy is it? Every American knows at least one person with a food allergy. Food allergy is a rejection of certain types of foods because your immune system recognizes it as harmful. For anything to be categorized as food, it is safe for everyone’s health. However, in food allergy situations, the food can be fatal if nothing is done about it. The allergy can be mild or fatal. Mild food allergy can present as rashes and itching.
However, a swelling or anaphylactic food allergy presents as swelling. Your face and throat swell, causing your airway to close up. This makes it hard for you to breathe, making it fatal. Food allergies are more common in children than adults. As the child grows, the allergy subsides. Some foods are commonly known to cause allergies, such as soy, nuts, shellfish, milk, eggs, and wheat. A significant intake of these foods can cause anaphylaxis in many people. However, in some, small amounts are relatively safe. In others, even minute amounts can trigger allergy symptoms.
Food allergy testing.
How do you determine what type of food allergy you have? Do you need to visit a clinic to know your allergen? Yes and no. You can find the cause of your food allergy at home or through food allergy testing. At home, you will have to monitor your reaction to the foods you eat closely. If you notice symptoms of allergy after eating a particular food, you might be allergic to it. However, home monitoring is not accurate in determining the specific allergen. This is because you can notice symptoms of food allergy after eating a mixture of foods. Therefore, isolating the specific allergy-causing food is difficult. Food allergy testing is the best method for testing for food allergies. It is accurate.
Food allergy testing is a test to determine the specific food causing your allergy. It also helps to differentiate a food allergy from a food sensitivity. Many people confuse food allergy and food sensitivity. Though the symptoms of the two are similar, complications are completely different. Food sensitivity is not as serious as an allergy because it is limited to gastrointestinal problems like nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. An example of food sensitivity is lactose intolerance. Food testing is essential because it helps with future planning in preventing the allergy.
But how do you know that you need food allergy testing? Who qualifies for the testing? Are there risk factors that indicate you should take the test? Yes, there are risk factors to a food allergy that indicate you are eligible for the testing. They include:
- Family history of allergies to foods
- Other allergies like eczema and hay fever
- Concurrent food allergies
You also qualify for food allergy testing if you experience food allergy symptoms immediately after eating or even before you finish eating. The symptoms are organ-specific:
- Digestive system
Food allergies cause tongue swelling and itching, abdominal pain, and a metallic mouth taste.
Skin manifestations are the leading signs of a food allergy. They include itching, redness, rash, and hives.
- Respiratory system
Respiratory symptoms of food allergies are fatal. The respiratory system is the end-system of food allergies. This means that complications of food allergies are often associated with the respiratory system. The system’s symptoms include difficulties breathing, wheezing, congestion of the nose, and a tight feeling in the chest. These may cause a fast pulse, fainting, or pale skin, due to the deficiency of oxygen in your body.
How useful are the results of a food allergy test?
The results of food allergy testing are very useful in determining the specific food causing your allergy. Since food allergies have no cure, the results will help avoid food allergies in the future due to the identified allergen food. The results are also useful in preventing anaphylaxis due to the food allergy. This is because the doctor can prescribe epinephrine, also known as an EpiPen, to prevent severe allergic reactions. You inject it over the clothes, preferably to the thigh. At Vital Force clinic, we take food allergies very seriously. This is why we offer food allergy testing to determine the cause of the allergy. We believe that determining the cause will help you lead a more healthy life. If you suspect an allergy or have the mentioned risk factors, then you need testing. You can book your appointment by contacting us at 205-352-9141.