Food Allergy Testing

3 Ways to Find the Problem

© Dane Roubos, D.C.

I've been doing Food Allergy Testing since I was a student in Chiropractic College. I had developed food allergies myself and I read everything I could find in the library on this topic. This process has always worked well for me, and over the years I've refined it to be even more accurate.

Food Allergies
The surface area of your digestive tract is greater than the area of a tennis court.  This makes it the largest, most active immune-reacting surface in your body. Food allergies are far more common today than generally realized.

Foods can cause all manner of symptoms, including a stuffy or runny nose, headaches, back pain, fatigue, arthritis, ear infections, and even mood swings, anxiety or depression in many people.

I offer two main types of testing for food allergies: Applied Kinesiology and blood tests for reactions to foods. Once the food culprits are tentatively identified, you will need to eliminate them from your diet for a period of time to see if your symptoms improve.

Once your symptoms have cleared up, it's time to "challenge" with the suspected foods and see if the symptoms return.  This offers all the proof you need to know it's worthwhile to continue avoiding those foods in the future.

This process is called "elimination and challenge," and is challenging enough in its own right! There is often an emotional attachment, or even an addiction to foods we're sensitive to.  As you can guess, the process requires a strong commitment.

Using the following screening tests to identify suspected foods makes the process much easier than the old-style elimination diet. But if you feel like fasting for several days, you will be able to tell if it would be worth it to do some testing.

Applied Kinesiology
AK is a specialized type of muscle testing, which has been used clinically for over 40 years. I've personally used AK since about 1980 and have found it very helpful as a diagnostic aid. When done carefully, and certain factors are taken into consideration, it can identify stressful foods or other substances with a high degree of accuracy.

While not 100% accurate (is anything?), it offers a low cost method that tests for all kinds of reactions to foods or other substances. This is because it assesses your whole body's response to a food, not just a particular immune reaction, as does a blood test.

Since it's done in-office, and the results are immediate, it's a convenient and economical way to screen for food sensitivities. Allow about an hour to thoroughly test 15-20 foods (plus a few from home) and cover recommendations.

Foods can act as stimulants for many people, throwing their system into "overdrive." this is an adaptive state, in which the body tries to keep going, no matter what. It's common when people have been stressed or very mental, to the exclusion of other modes of feeling and being.

When someone's in overdrive, their muscles usually test strong when they should be going weak. In other words, when I introduce a toxic or stressful substance like sugar, MSG or preservatives, their muscles will still test strong. There are various ways to prevent "false negatives" like this, by calming the system down before testing.

The point I want to make is this: it's quite easy to miss important food reactions if the muscle testing is not performed with this in mind. The expectations of the tester and client can also alter the result, so it's important to remain neutral and "curious."

Blood Tests
These measure the activity of specific immune reactions to foods. While there are several different types of immune reactions, 80% of them are mediated through the IgG family of immune response.

IgG reactions are delayed anywhere from 2 hours up to 4 or 5 days. Usually, a reaction is noted within 24-48 hours. This delay makes identification of food sensitivities difficult without some form of testing.

Most test panels include about 80-100 foods, so they're good for screening a large number of foods. They also provide a quantitative measurement of the degree of reaction.

There two main drawbacks to blood tests. Most of them only test for certain immune reactions, like IgG. That leaves another 20% of possibilities untested, unless you add more tests. I prefer the test that combines all four "sub-fractions" of IgG, along with IgE type reactions. This still leaves IgA and IgM untested, however. They are much less common, but certainly still possible.

The other downside to blood tests is the cost. The Combination IgG plus IgE test costs about $275.

Click here for my article on How to Do An Elimination Diet.

Underlying Causes of Food Allergies
Eliminating problem foods can be a life-saver, but it's probably not the ultimate solution. Other, underlying causes, which I call "Illness Anchors," may be causing the weakness that led to the food sensitivities in the first place. Here's a quick list of the most likely possibilities, all of which can affect your digestive and immune function:

  • Physical Level: heavy metal toxicity, parasites, visceral restrictions or old surgical scars
  • Emotional Level: old trapped emotional energies (typically from childhood)
  • Mental Level: subconscious beliefs like unworthiness

Many people have one or more of these problems without knowing it, and they don't connect the dots between their various symptoms and these underlying causes. And who would? We're not trained to think that way!

Click here to learn about the Physical, Emotional,  Mental and Spiritual Levels.