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What helps doctors diagnose food allergies?

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Sometimes, a food allergy diagnosis cannot be made solely on the basis of your medical history. In that case, the doctor may ask you to go back and keep a record of the contents of each meal and whether you had a reaction. This gives more detail that you and the doctor can use to determine if there is consistency in the reactions.

The next step some doctors use is an elimination diet. Under the doctor's direction, you avoid foods suspected of causing the allergy, like eggs, and substitutes another food, in this case, another source of protein. If you eliminate a specific food from your diet and your symptoms go away, the doctor can almost always make a diagnosis. If you then eat that same food (under the doctor's direction) and the symptoms come back, then your diagnosis is confirmed. This technique cannot be used, however, if the reactions are severe (in which case, you should avoid that food entirely) or infrequent.

From: Food Allergy and Food Intolerance WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases: "Fact Sheet: Food Allergy and Intolerances."  UpToDate. American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology.

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on October 29, 2018

SOURCES:

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases: "Fact Sheet: Food Allergy and Intolerances."  UpToDate. American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology.

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on October 29, 2018

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