Food allergies are triggered by IgE antibody reactions to a specific food.
A true food allergy is triggered by IgE antibody production specific to a reactive food. IgE reactions generally occur within minutes of eating a reactive food, which is why they are also called ‘immediate’ hypersensitivity reactions. After the first exposure to a food allergen, the body remembers what the allergen looks like and keeps a supply of IgE ready for immediate release if it sees that allergen again. Food allergies can be life-threatening (for example, an anaphylactic reaction to peanuts), but these reactions are rare, occurring in less than 1% of people. Skin reactions like hives and eczema, plus breathing and digestive problems are also common IgE reactions. Referral to an allergy specialist is recommended in the case of serious food allergies.
The IgE panel offered by Rocky Mountain Analytical may be useful for identifying IgE reactions to regularly eaten foods responsible for unexplained symptoms like:
- abdominal pain
Why Test for IgE Food Allergy?
Serious reactions like difficulty breathing or anaphylactic reactions should be diagnosed and treated by a physician or a healthcare professional trained in treatment of allergic reactions. However, otherwise unexplained and chronic symptoms like those listed above may be signs of food allergies.