bite my words

Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving

Allergy testing

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It puzzles me why allergists don’t advocate for themselves more. Maybe they have more business than they can handle? Us dietitians are always wrestling with the confusion between us and nutritionists. Yet, I hear about people getting “allergy” testing done by naturopaths all the time and I never hear allergists raising concerns about this.
According to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology, “an allergist is a pediatrician or internist with at least two additional years of specialized training and is the best physician to diagnose and treat allergies and asthma”. These are highly trained doctors who only use legitimate testing methods. If you think that you may have a food allergy you should be asking your primary health care provider for a referral to see an allergist. Legitimate forms of allergy testing include: skin prick, food challenge, and in some cases blood tests.
The AAAAI also tells you what tests to avoid, as they are not believed to be useful or effective. These tests include: massive allergy screening tests done in supermarkets or drug stores, applied kinesiology (allergy testing through muscle relaxation), cytotoxicity testing, skin titration (Rinkel method), provocative and neutralization (subcutaneous) testing or sublingual provocation.
Childhood allergies can often be out-grown. According to the Food Allergy Guidelines most children will out-grow milk, egg, soy, and wheat allergies. Peanut and tree nut allergies are least likely to be out-grown. The optimal way to determine if an allergy has been out-grown is through a challenge test which should be done under medical supervision in case a reaction does occur.

Author: Diana

I'm a registered dietitian living in Nova Scotia, Canada. My goal is to help people relearn how to have a healthy relationship with food.

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