Curious about the best food sensitivity available today? Or maybe you're wondering whether the investment is necessary? Don't worry. We're here to guide you through so that you can identify what's going on in your digestive tract.
If you're having issues with your gut health often, you might be having a reaction to the food you eat. While food sensitivities aren't life-threatening, they are often accompanied by unpleasant symptoms, including migraines, fatigue, bloating and cramps, brain fog, constipation, and diarrhea.
Taking a food sensitivity test can take the guesswork out of identifying what's triggering your digestive symptoms. Some require a mouth swab or a small blood sample. Others can detect food sensitivities and intolerances using a simple breath test.
Here's how it works: The testing companies send you a kit, and while each kit is different depending on the company, they all include detailed instructions and the instruments needed to perform the test.
Once you return the test kit to the lab you'll need to wait a few days for results. The lab analysis involves measuring the levels of a protein called Immunoglobulin (IgG). They rely on this measure because IgG antibodies often indicate an immune response to certain foods. Once your results come in, you can begin the process of eliminating these foods from your diet.
We will note that the reliability of these tests can vary. For the most accurate understanding of your food sensitivities, it's always best to consult a registered clinician.
Because food sensitivity tests can now be performed at home, they are becoming increasingly popular. Check out the list below to see what your best options are.
Now, this isn't one you're going to find at the pharmacy any time soon. While still in development, the Çava Seat and mobile app provides an easy way to collect personalized health information from home and deliver insights in real-time. Dubbed "the world's first smart toilet seat," it relies on advanced sensors to track irregularities in your stool, and when combined with dietary data submitted through the mobile app, will help identify food sensitivities you may be experiencing.
The seat will analyze the consistency and color of your stool to determine a score inspired by the Bristol Stool Chart. This is an important step to identifying digestive issues. Instead of waiting for the results of your stool sample to come back from a lab, or spending days wondering how your gut health test went, the Çava Seat and mobile app can provide instant feedback.
Through the Çava App, you can also receive regular updates on gut abnormalities such as irregular bowel movements, overproduction of mucus, presence of blood, and more. Combined with a food diary and diet tracking you can see potential correlations between the food you eat and the health of your gut. Beyond its ability to provide gut insights, Çava is also designed to monitor your heart health and track your body's composition so that when it comes to your health, you don't miss a beat.
Though the Çava Seat is not a medical device designed to diagnose health conditions, it's a reliable way to capture meaningful data that can empower you to take charge of your health.
Shipping starts in Fall 2022 but you can join the waitlist here.
Everlywell offers two different food sensitivity tests. The standard test checks for 96 types of food intolerances. The more comprehensive options test for 204.
The company relies on the IgG antibody-mediated response, which they say can help determine the foods that are causing unpleasant reactions in your GI tract. Everlywell also requires a blood sample to deliver a food sensitivity score of anywhere between 0-3 (3 signifying high reactivity). Based on the results, you can start eliminating the foods you had a negative reaction to.
Everlywell will also provide a personalized report to help narrow down the list of possible foods based on your IgG reactivity. The company also gives you actionable insights to help guide your decision-making when it comes to food.
Price: Starts from $159
Pros: Tests the body's IgG reactivity to specific foods listed on their site
Cons: Lack of evidence to support this method as immunologic reactions to proteins in the diet that cause these reactions aren't found in the blood, but the GI tract
The 5Strands food intolerance test involves plucking a few hairs from the nape of your neck and sending it over to the company. 5Strands tests over 600 food and beverages, close to 200 environmental factors, 60 metal and mineral imbalances, and over 80 nutritional deficiencies.
The company uses BioResonance technology to identify the causes of your symptoms. The test can be taken multiple times to see what foods (and other items) you need to eliminate. The test checks for alcohols, additives, dairy, grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, preservatives, and more.
Once you receive your results, 5Strands emails personalized recommendations including dietary adjustments.
Pros: Screens for 600 food and beverages as well as environmental factors
Cons: Doesn't test for IgG antibody-mediated response
The Foodmarble Aire is a device that measures the level of hydrogen in your breath. According to the company, the harder a time you have absorbing food, the more hydrogen you'll produce.
After signing into the app and creating a food log, you'll need to blow into the breath test device. Soon, you'll receive a digestion score from zero to 10, with zero signifying perfect digestion, and 10 signifying extreme intolerance. It will also reveal the foods your body has difficulties digesting. The longer you track your food in the app, the more you'll have to go on when it comes to eliminating food from your diet.
You can also add a FODMAP program to test Sorbitol, Fructose, Lactose, and Inulin for an additional cost.
Price: Starts at $159
Pros: Detailed testing using the same breath testing technology as hospitals
Cons: Interpreting the test data can be a challenging
Vitagene uses DNA analysis to create wellness plans for its customers. The test measures the body's immune response to 96 foods. Users either submit a cheek swab (saliva test) for use in a DNA test or upload raw DNA data. Once a customer sends off their sample, they receive five reports, which include the following:
Users will then be instructed to factor the results into an elimination diet.
Pros: Health and wellness recommendations
Cons: The recommendations aren't personalized but assumed that someone with that DNA profile will have certain traits
While food sensitivity tests provide various ways to test for intolerances, microbiome testing involves stool samples to measure the number of microbes living inside your gut. This kind of testing provides a more extensive understanding of what's happening inside your body. After all, stool samples can detect gut microbes such as bacteria, yeast, parasites, fungus, and viruses in your gut.
As a full spectrum microflora analysis, microbiome test results give you a wider picture of your gut bacteria such as beneficial bacteria, inflammation markers, and more.
The microbiome is different from other organs because it isn't located in one place. For this reason, your gut bacteria plays a huge role in the health of your immune system, and your overall health.
If you have certain symptoms associated with food sensitivities or health issues like IBS, Celiac disease, Crohn's disease, or Ulcerative disease, you're a good candidate for a gut health test.
Remember, the human microbiome is unique and requires a personalized and accurate test to understand it better.
Through a stool sample, your test results can give you a better understanding of your digestive system and the unhealthy microbes that are causing you issues. A gut microbiome test is also useful for those who don't have visible health issues.
Since gut health is important for human health, a gut health test can reveal things that are off-balance so you can make the necessary diet and lifestyle changes.
As the wellness products continue to trend, it's likely that these home solutions will continue to grow in popularity. With millions of people suffering from food intolerances around the world, the need for accessible insights and advice on relieving symptoms is apparent.
New and exciting ways to monitor these symptoms are also on the way. Designed with high-quality biometric sensors, the Çava Seat can track your gut health, heart health, fitness progress, and more, without changing your daily routine. Daily bathroom visits provide some of the best information needed to identify gut imbalances and food intolerances.
By tracking your vitals, body composition, and waste quality the Çava Seat is able to learn over time and make recommendations to help you live a healthier life.