Rock with the word believe on it

I believe in science.

I got into a discussion with someone on Facebook today about IGG food intolerance testing. This is sort of a controversial topic and I’m not sure why. So, let’s dig in.

IGG food intolerance testing is absolute bunk. The science says that foods that rank highly on these tests show a tolerance to these particular foods. Here is a link to the statement from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. The Canadian, American, and European Allergy institutes of all recommend against using these tests to establish food allergies or intolerances.

If you want more information you can do a personal google search using the terms “igg food testing accuracy”. There are too many results and too much legitimate science to believe in IGG food testing. I am not going to do the research on this today for you. I’m gonna make you do a little work. 😉

The person I was fighting with suggested that all of these studies are irrelevant. They further suggested that peer reviewed, double blind placebo controlled studies are “not legitimate” and mainstream medicine is a “fraud”. I find these statements offensive. However, I do believe there is some wiggle room.

The mind

I believe that the mind is a powerful tool in the battle against whatever is ailing someone. There is a quote from the movie Bull Durham that comes to mind. Annie and Crash are having a fight over their star pitcher. Annie is upset that her star pitcher boyfriend is not having sex with her because of advice Crash has given him. Crash says to Annie, “If you believe you’re playing well because you’re getting laid or because you’re not getting laid or because you wear women’s underwear, then you are. And you should know that!”

If you believe you feel better because you eliminated the foods that rated highly in your IGG food intolerance tests, then you do. I’m never going to argue that a particular person feels better or worse because of what they eliminated. It isn’t my place.

That’s why double-blind placebo controlled studies are the most powerful scientific studies. “Double-blind” means that the participant and the person issuing the test do not know whether or not they are getting the item being tested. “Placebo controlled” means that there is a non-active ingredient that is being tested against the actual ingredient being tested. So, nobody knows if they are getting the actual test ingredient or not and cannot skew the results.

But I will argue that the IGG food intolerance tests are not accurate. I will argue that if the food intolerance test eliminates a large number of foods, it can make one’s life very difficult. With the already difficult path of celiac disease, the additional removal of a large number of foods just makes life that much harder. I’m not about making my life harder.

My experience

And, so you know, there have been times I’ve struggled with my celiac disease. I’ve taken the IGG food allergy panel. I found that the foods I ate every day were on the high reaction list. The foods that I didn’t ever eat weren’t on the intolerant list. For example, wheat, oats, rye, and barley all showed up as non-reactive. I haven’t had any of those gluten ingredients purposely cross my lips in 8+ years. But the eggs I eat every day were high on the reactivity list.

I did eliminate eggs for about 8 weeks after the panel. I was miserable. It was too hard and I didn’t feel any better. But that is me. You may have a totally different experience. That’s okay. We all have to live our lives to the best of our ability with all of the information we have at the time.

Conclusion

I think you can save your money on these tests because they are bunk. The science is overwhelming and indisputable. However, if you choose to take the test and eliminate the foods recommended, I will never argue that you don’t feel better by eliminating them. Please just make sure you eat a balanced diet with enough calories to support your activity and lifestyle.

One thought on “I believe in science

  1. Yup! I had the results from the IGG test at the same time I had the DX. I avoided the high rated foods for about a month, but the celiac DX was too much for me to wrap my head around, so I stopped avoiding the other foods. My GI told me the IGG test was bunk as well.

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