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Food intolerances involve difficulty digesting certain foods, leading to digestive symptoms, while food allergies involve an immune system response that can cause a range of symptoms, including hives, difficulty breathing, or anaphylaxis. Food allergies are typically more severe and can be life-threatening.
Food intolerances can cause a variety of symptoms, including bloating, gas, abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, headaches, migraines, skin rashes, and fatigue. The symptoms can vary from person to person and may occur several hours or even days after consuming the problematic food.
The accuracy of food intolerance tests can vary depending on the method used. Elimination diets and food diaries are considered reliable methods as they directly observe the relationship between food consumption and symptoms. Blood tests, such as IgG testing, have mixed opinions on their accuracy and clinical usefulness. Skin prick tests are not recommended for diagnosing food intolerances.
No, food intolerance tests may not detect all types of food intolerances. Some tests focus on specific intolerances, such as lactose intolerance or fructose malabsorption, while others may detect a broader range of intolerances. However, there may be certain intolerances that are challenging to diagnose through testing alone, and an elimination diet may be necessary.
No, Food intolerance tests can be undertaken without a prescription.
Food intolerances can vary in duration. Some may be permanent, such as lactose intolerance, while others may be temporary or improve over time. The severity of symptoms can also change depending on factors such as gut health, stress levels, and overall well-being.
Food intolerance tests can provide useful information to guide dietary changes. Elimination diets and working closely with a registered dietitian are often recommended for managing food intolerances effectively.