Food Intolerance

Advice please !!!!

15 messages
06/07/2005 at 13:14
Can anyone tell me if there is a web site that I can access to try to self diagnose possible food intolerance? I have been feeling so sick on some days whereas other days I feel fine. I did a pregnancy test just to make sure I wasn't pregnant - came back negative. I have tried to keep a record of foods that I am eating but am still unable to pinpoint to any one thing. I cannot afford to go private and my Dr would proably laugh me out of the surgery.
I am sure I have read in a magazine lately (Health and Fitness, Zest and Runners World are only mags I read) about being able to access a database to self diagnose. Can anyone help out there?
06/07/2005 at 15:31
Hi Sonia self diagnosis really isn't the way to go. You need to follow a strict Exclusion Diet, this takes about 3 months to finish and you would need to be monitored by a nutritionist. Talk to your doctor, if you doc is any good - they won't laugh at you, if they do, tell them that you want a second opinion.

06/07/2005 at 15:49
I had a food sensitivity test done. It only took 30 mins and showed up which foods and food groups(if any) your body finds hard to digest resulting in you lacking energy and /or feeling groggy. I don't know how precise they are but it worked for me and at £40 wasn't bad value for money.
06/07/2005 at 22:28
Sonia, there's yorktest.com. I took their test a couple of years ago and have benefitted from taking their advice. My doctor is a bit useless so didn't feel I could go to him.
LOK
07/07/2005 at 00:42
the york tests were advertised through my local chemists and look good

quite pricey though depending on what you have tested - general food groups or specific items

LOK
LOK
07/07/2005 at 00:44
PP is saying what my GP said (about my son) but it's time consuming and very difficult to do in practice - one item at a time
and means you have to experiment with making yourself ill by introducing the allergen

i don't see what's wrong with getting the lab to do one of these tests with pin prick of blood

what's science for , if it isn't to help us find answers quicker?
LOK
07/07/2005 at 00:56
Sonia- I really don't think a doctor would laught at you- if you feel unwell, you feel unwell. I had similar problems, plus migraines, and I was asked by my GP to exclude dairy products, wheat, and caffeine all at once (which was horrible, but worked) for three months. Obviously, there are many different ways of checking for this.
Good luck!
07/07/2005 at 01:03
P.s I have a book which I bought in 1990 and has probably been published several times called "The Complete Guide to Food Allergy and Intolerance" by Dr. Jonathan Brostoff and Linda Gamlin (paperback, Bloomsbury), which I have find quite useful in the past. I don't know if there are more recent publications.
It has a lot of case studies on individuals and their symptoms, and how identifying the foods improved their lives.
07/07/2005 at 06:46
GP referral to a proper NHS allergist is the way to go, not to some trendy clinic.

Sassie (allergens: wasps, nuts, wheat, citrus, tomatoes, raw onions, latex and, just to liven things up, since last week, avocado!)
WildWill    pirate
07/07/2005 at 08:36
i asked my doc to see an allergist and all he said is

"I dont belive in all that stuff"
WildWill    pirate
07/07/2005 at 08:52
I take it you are talking about Food Intolerance rather than food allergies (which is a totally different thing) and often takes the form of a “Drug Like” side effect from eating the food in question and are much more common than food allergies.

Self assessment is difficult and diagnosis should not be rushed into … best to see a professional than can help (as someone above stated – a NHS Nutritionist / allergist or such)

Food allergy can usually be diagnosed from skin and blood tests. Unfortunately there are no such convenient tests for food intolerance (the test above are most likely to be allergy test not Intolerance tests.

The most effective test for food intolerance is to remove all potentially offending foods from the diet for a few weeks (each in turn). If the symptoms resolve on this elimination diet, then generally a diagnosis of food intolerance can be made. Such an elimination diet should not be attempted without dietetic and medical supervision, as the diet is restrictive and may not be nutritionally adequate. (and as also stated above can take some time)

A good starting point is the following list of possibilities

• Additives (asmatics are most likely to be affected by sulphite preservatives)
. Highly processed foods
• Milk
• wheat
• soy
• egg
• seafood
WildWill    pirate
07/07/2005 at 08:55
To cut back on the risk of many of the possible food tolerances try to eat food as closely to the way it is provided in nature.

Avoid ready meals, anything with additives/preservatives, eat the wholemeal equivalents off foodstuffs such as bread and pasta, go for brown rice. Fruit and Veg should be fresh and not out of a tin . avoid convince foods such as fishfinger burgers etc

Good luck

WW
07/07/2005 at 09:26
If someone believes they have a food intolerance and gives me a history that doesn't fall at the first hurdle on the plausibility test, I'll either advise exclusion of the specific substance, with follow-up, or refer to one of our excellent clinical immunologists working in the NHS.

Wouldn't touch the "private" self-referral clinics or the pendulum-swingers that do the rounds of the health-food shops.

What we CAN'T do, and the high-street quacks and internet snake-oil touters can't do, is take someone who is feeling vaguely unwell and do blunderbuss testing to see what you might be intolerant to, because the tests have a very poor predictive value except in the context of a good clinical history. All comes down to Bayes' theorem, apparently...
WildWill    pirate
07/07/2005 at 09:37
agree witth V - most of these test at the health-food type places are a load of crock

dont go there
07/07/2005 at 10:15
Quite right!
Another thing, Sonia, in case it's not food intolerance or an allergy: when was the last time you had a complete check-up with blood tests (which is how my temporary anaemia was spotted), or liver function tests, etc.

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