5

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How do you test your food intolerances?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created November 12, 2011 at 4:36 PM

I am not talking about allergies, but about milder food intolerance. How do people approach this to quantify and measure it? I have read that most serum lab blood tests are useless. Prick tests? Elimination and reintroduction seems to be the consensus, but still there is nothing quantifiable. Do people use blood glucose measurements to determine their food intolerance? Some people use heart rate or heart rate variability(HRV) changes while eating particular foods. Please share your strategies!

Medium avatar

(8239)

on November 26, 2011
at 11:49 PM

Are we to infer that you have concluded that you may have "milder food intolerances"? How "mild"?

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on November 13, 2011
at 02:44 AM

I don't need an external measure. What's the point? How I feel after eating a food--either immediately or within a few hours-- is enough information for me. Then again, I am highly sensitive after going Primal, so I notice pretty quickly if a food isn't working for me.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 13, 2011
at 12:01 AM

Cause a reaction, whereas eating a serving a day for several days will definitely cause a reaction if it is an offending food.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 13, 2011
at 12:00 AM

Gas is your body's way of telling you that it is having difficulty digesting something you consumed. If you sneeze a lot upon reintroduction of a food you have eliminated, I would take that as a sign that that food should be avoided (for example, I sneeze when I eat chocolate, which may seem like not a big deal, but sometimes I then get a migraine)...let me clarify that when I say copious amounts, I'm not promoting binge eating (though I do agree that a food that triggers binging is a food to avoid), only that to get accurate information after an elimination, eating the food one time may not

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 10:44 PM

@Rogue Nutritionist Yes. I completely agree. It's about the response to a patterned exposure to that food. With most foods though, I think there is a tolerable limit. In terms of copious amounts, I could say eat pounds and pounds of grass-fed and probably not feel great thereafter. This doesn't necessarily tell me that I'm allergic or intolerant to that grass-fed beef; it tells me that I shouldn't eat that much. So when reintroducing, I think some limit should be set, perhaps the amount you would eat if you were to consume that food regularly.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 10:43 PM

@Rogue Nutritionist Yes. I completely agree. It's about the response to a patterned exposure to that food. With most foods though, I think there is a tolerable limit. In terms of copious amounts, I could say eat pounds and pounds of grass-fed and probably not feel great thereafter. This doesn't necessarily tell me that I'm allergic or intolerant to that grass-fed beef; it tells me thatI should eat that much. So when reintroducing, I think some limit should be set, perhaps the amount you would eat if you were to consume that food regularly.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:10 PM

Wheat and milk made me sick enough that I didn't bother testing blood glucose, but my blood pressure went up about 20 points on top and 10 on bottom. When I tested glucose against fruit and sugar, the only thing that caused a true spike and that was pineapple I ate without eating meat or fat first. Otherwise, my BG is level and low. Blood pressure is nice and low only when I'm not eating wheat or sugar (and lower if I skip coffee which I'm not.)

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:04 PM

What about sneezing, I sneeze from black pepper and cinnamon.

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:00 PM

How would you classify gas as a result of a meal? Is it a sign of an intolerance?

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 08:58 PM

So did you find any deviations in terms of blood glucose and blood pressure when it comes to the problematic foods?

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:56 PM

^That knowledge is really valuable, especially when a single binge on a food you actually are allergic to can mean a week of malaise/depression.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 12, 2011
at 07:42 PM

What I mean by a full 72 hour reintroduction is that you would consume copious amounts of that food over the period, not just eat it once. In your case, you now know that you can eat ice cream with no discernable ill effects once in a great while, but you didn't get information enough to know if you can eat dairy in good health on a regular basis.

76f3ead3aa977d876bcf3331d35a36e9

(4620)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:37 PM

This is very true for me. 20 years of constant post-nasal drip (phlegm in the back of my throat) cleared up perfectly within a month of no gluten/lactose. Whenever I eat gluten or excess lactose, then bam - throat phlegm.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:32 PM

And yes, it's not so easy that you can just eat everything that doesn't make you sick--but it will help you identify foods that DO make you sick.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:31 PM

Hmmm, I'm not saying you're wrong but when I tried to reintroduce ice cream I couldn't even finish the dish because it upset my stomach immediately. It was cheap ice cream that must have contained some milk. At Christmas I'm going to search for premium ice cream that has only heavy cream (or make my own) and I hope that will be okay since sugar doesn't really bother me.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:29 PM

Yes, I heard that too and forgot to mention the hacking cough I had from both excess mucous and GERD.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:03 PM

To an extent, I take issue with the eliminate-reintroduce method. It works for me with things like gluten or alcohol. The other day though, I decided to have ice cream for the first time in 6 months. I usually don't even do well with dairy anyway. After though, I felt completely fine, no mucus, nothing. And several days out I had no symptoms. This means I don't have an allergy to ice cream but in terms of whether a specific food is good or bad for me, I don't see this method as all to accurate, more limitedly accurate.

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9 Answers

5
Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 12, 2011
at 07:00 PM

An allergy is to a protein, a sensitivity or intolerance is referring to a non-protein food issue. My strongly preferred method to determine these in a body is elimination and reintroduction of potentially offending foods. I've seen wrong information with so many of the tests available, and observation of one's own body's reaction can't be beat, imo. I recommend a full three weeds of strict avoidance of the foods in question, then allowing a full 72 hours per food during reintroduction time with notes taken on any symptoms that may emerge.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 10:44 PM

@Rogue Nutritionist Yes. I completely agree. It's about the response to a patterned exposure to that food. With most foods though, I think there is a tolerable limit. In terms of copious amounts, I could say eat pounds and pounds of grass-fed and probably not feel great thereafter. This doesn't necessarily tell me that I'm allergic or intolerant to that grass-fed beef; it tells me that I shouldn't eat that much. So when reintroducing, I think some limit should be set, perhaps the amount you would eat if you were to consume that food regularly.

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:56 PM

^That knowledge is really valuable, especially when a single binge on a food you actually are allergic to can mean a week of malaise/depression.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:31 PM

Hmmm, I'm not saying you're wrong but when I tried to reintroduce ice cream I couldn't even finish the dish because it upset my stomach immediately. It was cheap ice cream that must have contained some milk. At Christmas I'm going to search for premium ice cream that has only heavy cream (or make my own) and I hope that will be okay since sugar doesn't really bother me.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 12, 2011
at 07:42 PM

What I mean by a full 72 hour reintroduction is that you would consume copious amounts of that food over the period, not just eat it once. In your case, you now know that you can eat ice cream with no discernable ill effects once in a great while, but you didn't get information enough to know if you can eat dairy in good health on a regular basis.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:32 PM

And yes, it's not so easy that you can just eat everything that doesn't make you sick--but it will help you identify foods that DO make you sick.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 13, 2011
at 12:01 AM

Cause a reaction, whereas eating a serving a day for several days will definitely cause a reaction if it is an offending food.

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:04 PM

What about sneezing, I sneeze from black pepper and cinnamon.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 10:43 PM

@Rogue Nutritionist Yes. I completely agree. It's about the response to a patterned exposure to that food. With most foods though, I think there is a tolerable limit. In terms of copious amounts, I could say eat pounds and pounds of grass-fed and probably not feel great thereafter. This doesn't necessarily tell me that I'm allergic or intolerant to that grass-fed beef; it tells me thatI should eat that much. So when reintroducing, I think some limit should be set, perhaps the amount you would eat if you were to consume that food regularly.

9ac8a7b68cf079b22de42b703e466e64

(787)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:03 PM

To an extent, I take issue with the eliminate-reintroduce method. It works for me with things like gluten or alcohol. The other day though, I decided to have ice cream for the first time in 6 months. I usually don't even do well with dairy anyway. After though, I felt completely fine, no mucus, nothing. And several days out I had no symptoms. This means I don't have an allergy to ice cream but in terms of whether a specific food is good or bad for me, I don't see this method as all to accurate, more limitedly accurate.

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:00 PM

How would you classify gas as a result of a meal? Is it a sign of an intolerance?

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on November 13, 2011
at 12:00 AM

Gas is your body's way of telling you that it is having difficulty digesting something you consumed. If you sneeze a lot upon reintroduction of a food you have eliminated, I would take that as a sign that that food should be avoided (for example, I sneeze when I eat chocolate, which may seem like not a big deal, but sometimes I then get a migraine)...let me clarify that when I say copious amounts, I'm not promoting binge eating (though I do agree that a food that triggers binging is a food to avoid), only that to get accurate information after an elimination, eating the food one time may not

2
673f7ad6052448d51496f177395416b7

on November 12, 2011
at 06:54 PM

Something I heard, maybe someone can back me up- Doesn't excess mucuous production (extra phlegm in the back of your throat) signal a sensitivity? I get that immediately after consuming sugars or low fat dairy.

76f3ead3aa977d876bcf3331d35a36e9

(4620)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:37 PM

This is very true for me. 20 years of constant post-nasal drip (phlegm in the back of my throat) cleared up perfectly within a month of no gluten/lactose. Whenever I eat gluten or excess lactose, then bam - throat phlegm.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:29 PM

Yes, I heard that too and forgot to mention the hacking cough I had from both excess mucous and GERD.

2
B5c546053f675b66bc29f2299d416857

on November 12, 2011
at 05:52 PM

Funny I'm going through a blood test, and an elimination diet right now... To see what my food sensitivies are... They are basing everything off of how I feel or bloat when I eat certain foods. I feel awesome after eliminating gluten and wheat from my diet... And its only been 5 days... I'm basing this off how I feel and what I think is right for me!

2
96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 05:04 PM

My comments definitely relate only to mild reactions--no one suspecting a true allergy should follow my suggestion.

Prick tests were useless for me. I tested negative for allergy to wheat, yet I found out after going primal that wheat caused my stuffy nose and sneezing, GERD, and joint problems.

In answer to your question, I did use the eliminate-and-reintroduce method to check my reactions. Wheat was 90% of my trouble and I actually did fine with sugar but not milk.

I checked both my blood glucose and blood pressure frequently to verify what I was feeling. Wheat wasn't subtle, it made me feel really crummy. Milk did about the same. No major reaction to corn chips.

D7b01bbfd0b91a12c4aea43fb20adf15

(574)

on November 12, 2011
at 08:58 PM

So did you find any deviations in terms of blood glucose and blood pressure when it comes to the problematic foods?

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on November 12, 2011
at 09:10 PM

Wheat and milk made me sick enough that I didn't bother testing blood glucose, but my blood pressure went up about 20 points on top and 10 on bottom. When I tested glucose against fruit and sugar, the only thing that caused a true spike and that was pineapple I ate without eating meat or fat first. Otherwise, my BG is level and low. Blood pressure is nice and low only when I'm not eating wheat or sugar (and lower if I skip coffee which I'm not.)

1
A855da1ff09cc079729fdf75a109b9b9

on November 26, 2011
at 09:19 PM

I had the prick test done it is was negative for everything. I have been gluten free for almost three years and while it helped the bloating I am still dealing with other issues. My chiropractor gave me a script to have an IGg blood test done. It said that anything over 2 was condidered high..my results was Wheat-9.9, egg yolk 9.7, dairy 6.7, soy 4.0. (I found it interesting that gluten was the only one that was completely negative as I had been gluten free for almost 8 months at that time) I never really did anything with the results as the Chiroprator made them seem insignificant stating that he has seen people with a results of 100. The only one I have kept with is the wheat/gluten. But I am thinking I need to stay away from the others as they did show a reaction. Any thoughts out there?

1
3fa1da906c426b335569644f8a908024

on November 12, 2011
at 09:19 PM

IgG testing can reveal delayed reactions to food, such as food sensitivities, that otherwise won't be detected in traditional IgE allergy testing: http://gut.bmj.com/content/53/10/1459.short

0
C2450eb7fa11b37473599caf93b461ef

on November 14, 2011
at 01:16 PM

Prick testing is for immediate-onset allergies (IgE?). Think hives after shellfish, or anaphylactic shock after peanuts. They're not going to tell you anything about delayed onset allergies or sensitivities. (This from a mom who had her daughter tested with prick tests to try to diagnose her eczema and was told the kid was allergic to dust. Um, thanks, doc.)

0
B2cadbf43bddfbb523b8a53155656188

on November 14, 2011
at 12:46 AM

I eliminated what (felt great) and then re-introduced it (felt awful). However, would this be classified as a wheat intolerance? Perhaps my body is just highly sensitive after the elminationg of wheat. I haven't had any major problems with wheat prior to trying this, but after elimination/re-introduction, I experienced extrement bloating, gas, etc.

0
A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208

(13978)

on November 12, 2011
at 07:02 PM

I've found that blood tests and my own 'eliminate and reintroduce' efforts confirmed what several different homeopathic tests found. I've never had a prick test.

So I feel comfortable suggesting the blood tests along with homeopathic tests (even though they seem weird and kooky).

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