A Food allergy is an abnormal immune reaction to food. This involves the production of special protein antibodies to foods called IgE (immunoglobulin E). One side of the IgE antibody will recognize and bind to the allergic food. The other side of the antibody is attached to a specialized immune cell packed with histamine, called a Mast cell. Called to alert, the IgE antibody now only has to wait for re-exposure to food allergens.
This is referred to as Type I food allergies and occur most commonly in children but happen in adults as well. These antibodies can be measured in the blood and this forms the basis of an IgE food allergy test.
There are eight foods that account for 90% of all food-allergic reactions.
The most common food allergies are:
- Cow’s milk
- Hen’s eggs
- Tree nuts
IgG or Food Sensitivities
Over 60% of Americans needlessly suffer from some form of delayed food allergies or food sensitivities which are causing chronic health problems. IgG antibodies are associated with non-atopic or “delayed” food reactions that can worsen or contribute to many different health problems and are considered the most common form of immunologically mediated food intolerance. The evidence for IgG antibody reactions as a basis for delayed food allergy or food intolerances continues to grow, including well designed randomized controlled trials, however, some health professionals just haven’t kept up to date.
The IgG antibodies, instead of attaching to Mast cells, like IgE antibodies in Type 1 allergies, bind directly to the food as it enters the bloodstream, forming food allergens bound to antibodies circulating in the bloodstream. The allergic symptoms in Type 3 immune reactions are delayed in onset – appearing anywhere from a couple of hours to several days after consuming allergic foods.
These “hidden” food allergies are caused by increasing blood levels of IgG antibodies in reaction to specific foods. Often the offenders are frequently eaten foods that are hard to avoid, such as milk, corn, and wheat. High levels of many IgG food-specific antibodies are generally related to weakened intestinal permeability.
Some common symptoms are:
Abdominal Pains Aches and Pains Acne
ADHD Anxiety Arthritis Itching
Skin Rashes Hyperactivity Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Loss of Appetite Migraine Chronic Fatigue
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN IgE, IgG, IgM AND IgA?
IgE is an indication of a hypersensitivity or true allergy.
IgG is a secondary response usually associated with a previous exposure to an antigen.
IgM is a primary response usually associated with a current antigen.
IgA is a delayed response which can appear in serum, but is most abundant in secretions/mucosal system.
Food Allergy and Food Sensitivity Testing
IgE Food Allergy Test
- Skin test. A skin prick test can determine your reaction to particular foods. In this test, small amounts of suspected foods are placed on the skin of your forearm or back. Your skin is then pricked with a needle, to allow a tiny amount of the substance beneath your skin surface. If you’re allergic to a particular substance being tested, you develop a raised bump or reaction.
- Blood test or BloodSpot A blood test can measure your immune system’s response to particular foods by assessing the amount of allergy-type antibodies in your bloodstream, known as immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. A blood sample is then sent to a medical laboratory, where different foods can be tested.
IgG Food Allergy Test
- ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) test analyzes IgG Food Antibody Profile measures levels of IgG antibodies for commonly offending foods. It clearly identifies those foods that may be causing health problems.