No one ever wants to find out that they’re dealing with a food allergy. Whether it’s a mild one that just causes stomach upset or a severe one that could potentially block breathing, an allergy is an allergy, and these are always serious. Just as serious as the allergy itself is the ways to test for allergies. Thanks to modern technology and the development of the internets, you now have more options to choose from than ever before. Let’s take a look at each one.
Ways to test for allergies
There are four main ways to test for allergies. Some are better known than others, but they can all help determine what your body is reacting to.
- Elimination diet test:This is an outdated approach to allergy testing, but it is still practised today. With this test, the specific reaction is narrowed down by adding and/or eliminating food to your diet and seeing what happened. This kind of diet is only to be done under doctor supervision, of course, and should not be conducted at home on your own.
- Skin prick test:This is also considered to be an outdated method of allergy testing and can have so-so results when it comes specifically to food allergies. This kind of testing uses a grid of injections under the skin, and the allergic substance will create a welt on the skin. Food allergies don’t always show up on a skin prick test, and this kind of analysis can also sometimes create false positives.
- Blood sample test:Another option is a blood sample test that is conducted from home. A complete kit is sent to you, and you prick your fingertips before putting the blood on the included card that is sent with the kit. It is sent off to a lab, and the results are emailed back to you with more information on the allergen and its role in your food-related life.
- Hair sample test:Much the same as above, the same at-home test is done, and it uses the root of your hair instead of blood. For those that are searching for wast to test for allergies specifically with no blood component, this is great. The same food-related results and changes will be sent to you so that you can adapt your life as needed.
Which option to choose
Having options is great and all, but how do you choose which one is right for you? The short answer is that it needs to be the test that feels right for you as an individual. If one is more appealing, go with that. Generally speaking, both blood and hair sample tests will offer you the most accurate results with the least amount of disruption to your schedule. If you want the “no fuss “ approach, those two will both offer you the results that you need.
Allergy testing isn’t exactly supposed to be fun, but it shouldn’t be something that terrifies you, either. This is why the different testing methods are around, after all. Choose the one that feels the best for you.