York Test for allergies and food intolerances
Most parents would agree a child's diet is extremely important. Harriet has always eaten well and has been happy to try a wide variety of foods – especially those with very strong flavours. Just after introducing Harriet to solids (and sometimes during her exclusively breastfed days) her skin would flare up, and with each flare up, the rash would get progressively worse.
As Harriet is an eczema sufferer anyway, both the doctors and I put the rash down to eczema and sensitive skin. However, Harriet's skin always seemed worse after meals and as time went on it became harder and harder to get rid of the rash. I suspected it was triggered by food and eventually Harriet had blood tests which came back as "inconclusive"... Not quite the answer we were looking for!
Some 45 per cent of people in the UK have a food intolerance however the actual figure is thought to be much higher as many go undiagnosed. I was determined to get to the bottom of Harriet's flare ups, as they were making her so uncomfortable. She complained of suffering from tummy aches and headaches, and would sometimes gag on certain food.
As most food intolerances are potentially reversible I was keen to find the trigger and try and eradicate it, and perhaps be ableto reintroduce the specific food or foods in later life. In some children food intolerance reactions can take 24 to 48 hours to manifest, so it can be very tricky to discover the problem food through a controlled diet or elimination. Especially as sometimes it can be two foods that trigger a reaction when combined together.
The York Test is quick and easy to use – a simple finger prick test. Although this is hard to do on your own child, it is relatively pain free for the child – I think Harriet was more upset that I was trying to hug her! You do, however, have to collect enough blood, so need to ensure you hold their hand downwards and squeeze the blood out. Once finished it needs to be refrigerated and sent off ASAP in the envelope provided. The results can be found out after seven days.
The York Test tests 113 problem "trigger foods" or food groups. Included in the price is two telephone consultations with a qualified nutritionist who will offer support and individual advice on changing your lifestyle and diet, including a 12 week food diary plan to help sufferers note the changes they experience.
The initial price of the Food Intolerance Test is £20, and if the results are positive, the second stage can be used to diagnose the specific food/s intolerance. If the intolerance or suspected intolerance is seriously affecting you or a member of your family it is worth doing, however it is not cheap at £245.
I would recommend this test as it has enabled Harriet to have clear skin for several weeks now and she will hopefully grow out of her intolerance and be able to introduce eggs back into her diet as she gets older.
PWT rating: ♥♥♥♥♥
To fin out more about food intolerances and allergies visit York Test.