What is an IgE Allergy Test?
Last Updated: 10th November 2022 · Written by Donna Mastriani
What is an IgE Allergy Test?
Knowing what foods your body needs is fundamental to taking proper care of yourself. But what about which foods your body doesn’t want? Food allergies are becoming more and more common in the UK. And as more people dive into the world of food allergies, an IgE test is key in understanding what’s going on in our bodies and how best to take care of ourselves.
An IgE food allergies test is a lab-driven test designed to determine how your body reacts to certain food allergens. There are hundreds of potential allergens in the world of food, and the only way to know for certain what is causing your body to have an allergic reaction is to test against all of them.
Multiple Options for Testing
There are several options for testing for food allergies. The first option is a skin prick test. This uses small allergen samples under the skin to elicit a reaction in your body by creating a rash. But when it comes to food allergens, this isn’t always the best result. Another option — with arguably better results — is a blood test. This uses a sample of blood to rest against hundreds of food ingredient allergens to determine which ones create a reaction. The least popular option is the idea of a hair root test. Using a sample of hair (with the root) to determine which ingredients cause a reaction.
What is the IgE Allergy Blood Test?
An IgE allergy test is an analysis of a sample (usually blood) where the lab check for an IgE-mediated immune response when exposed to certain allergens. An allergy is a type I hypersensitivity meaning that exposure to an allergen results in the production of immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies, the release of histamine and symptoms (which may lag behind the other responses). Allergens are usually easy to identify due to the quick nature of the reaction.
This is the most efficient method for allergy testing against multiple foods. A small blood sample can be subject to hundreds of common allergens and complete results can be ready very quickly.
Fast and Effective Results
With food allergy testing you get concrete results, for an abundance of allergens, in very little time. This will allow you freedom over your diet and food choices again, without the fear and uncertainty of whether your meal will stir up trouble. You’ll see in intricate detail what makes your body react and why. Helping you avoid any future reactions to food, which is great for those who have a history of moderate to severe reactions. Although, since one reaction doesn’t accurately indicate the severity of future reactions — i.e. a mild reaction can easily grow into a severe one — knowing what to avoid for your own safety is paramount.
You’ll Understand Your Body Better
If you decide to have proper IgE allergy testing, you’ll understand how your body reacts to the food that you are eating, and how avoiding these key ingredients will make you healthier in the long-term. Having a food allergy is serious and important to know, but once you get the rest results back, you can back in control of your own body and be able to improve your overall quality of life as a result.