Facts About Food Allergy Tests

Food allergy tests can be tricky because of false positive results

There are many foods that cause food allergies, and an allergist or immunologist can test you to see which foods you are allergic to. Some food allergies, such as a peanut allergy, can have serious symptoms, so you will want to know if you are allergic to them. Many people with peanut allergies in their family routinely have their children tested before feeding peanut products to them.

A food journal helps you remember the foods that you have eaten

It is much easier to discover which foods are causing food allergies if you let your allergist know which foods you have eaten before your allergy test. This makes it much easier to detect the foods that could be the cause of your allergic symptoms, such as digestive upset, rash, or sneezing and stuffy nose.

Some allergies are more dangerous than others

Although all allergies are uncomfortable, some food allergies cause anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic reaction. According to the Mayo Clinic, if you have an allergy to one food, there is a greater chance that you are allergic to another. Some people who are allergic to peanuts are also allergic to tree nuts, another food that can cause anaphylaxis. Shellfish, milk, and eggs are other common causes of food-induced anaphylaxis, according to The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network.

Your allergist may do a blood test instead of a skin test

If you are on medication, such as antihistamines or other medicines that your doctor thinks you should not stop, you will be given a blood allergy food test. It is a simple test in which your blood is collected and sent to a lab. When the results are returned to your doctor, he or she will call you or the office will schedule another appointment for you.

Skin tests result in a hive if you are allergic

If your doctor decides to do a skin test to find out which foods you are allergic to, you will probably need to discontinue your medications. When you go in for your appointment, a very small amount of food substances will be placed under your skin. If you are allergic to the food, a hive will develop.

If you have any food allergies, you will need to avoid these foods

Since there are no cures for food allergies, you will need to avoid them. This can be difficult because processed foods or those that you eat in a restaurant may have hidden tree nuts or peanuts. They could also have the other foods that can cause serious reactions. You will need to check food labels very carefully before you eat anything to be sure that you are not eating foods that cause allergic reactions.

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