What is a food allergy and a food intolerance?Why do we test for IgG4 and IgE?
Testing IgG4 levels and IgE antibodies. What are all the facts?
Why we test for IgG4 using Blood in our Intolerance Tests
When we are testing intolerances, we do not look for an immediate allergic reaction (Type I allergy) or inflammation related to chronic diseases like IgG1, IgG2, IgG3 can. IgG4 in fact is considered the ‘blocking antibody’ in respect to IgE as they block access of the IgE to the allergen, helping us to understand how your immune system is reacting to food antigens before an allergic reaction (Type I) is developed. This is known as preventive screening.
The concentration of IgG4 in your blood is about 10,000 times higher than the IgE concentration. Therefore, IgG4 can bind faster and with greater frequency to the allergen than IgE (1) helping in the early identification of food associated symptoms.
IgG4 antibodies result in only 1% of the histamine released by IgE, with few patients experiencing allergic symptoms and therefore IgG4 antibodies are mostly produced when the allergy is asymptomatic.
The primary function of IgG4 is to influence the immune inflammatory response and the possibility to explore how the amount of IgG4 antibodies are related to particular allergens, it will be the first step toward into your journey for a healthier life.
Why is testing IgG4 levels advantage for us?
The production of IgG1, IgG2 and IgG3 antibodies when a specific food is consumed activates the formation of immune complexes with accumulation in the body where the problem is. Lack of scientific studies showing evidence that the accumulation of immune complexes on tissues are connected to specific symptoms make the test of IgG1, IgG2 and IgG3 antibodies not attractive from an Intolerance testing point of view.
Intolerance and Immune reactions
Both immune mediated and non-immune mediated reactions are involved in food intolerance development. The immune mechanism involved in food intolerance is associated with formation and accumulation of specific IgG antibodies in various organs, resulting in inflammatory processes (2-3) . In scientific literature is reported that 50% of patients effected by chronic diseases may possess IgG delayed mediated food allergy/intolerance. (4)
What are the role of antibodies in immune reactions?
Both IgE and IgG antibodies are in close proximity on chromosome 14 and they are read in sequence. Their production is dependant by the presence of Interleukins (ILs) . When IL4 is released it can be assumed that an IgE (Type I allergy) response will occur, with an immediate food reaction (3-4) causing a symptom. In the case of sensitisation when IL10 is present, mainly production of IgG4 antibodies will be involved, (3) while if other interleukins are synthesised, IgG1, IgG2, IgG3 are mainly produced.
What is an allergy?
An allergy is a type I hypersensitivity. This means that if an individual is exposed to an allergen then it results in the production of immunoglobin E (IgE antibodies), and the release of histamine and symptoms. It is an immediate response known as an IgE-mediated immune response with symptoms occurring almost straight away. That is one of the major differences between an allergy and an intolerance: the time it takes for a reaction and the symptoms to occur. Allergic reactions can occur almost immediately whereas an intolerance reaction can sometimes present itself up to 72 hours later.
How do you spot an allergy?
Allergens themselves are usually quite easy to identify due to the quick nature of which the reaction occurs. A food diary and allergy test can help in this regard. but this does depend on the severity of reaction as well as other factors, including hydration, the time of year and sometimes even the processing of the food, especially with regard to the amount. Intolerance testing 2 1 150x150 – IGG4 Intolerance Testing Science
Allergies can be life-threatening
Many people who suffer from an allergy know that an allergic response to a food or a non-food item. This has the potential to be life-threatening in certain individuals. In the case of severe allergies, even the tiniest traces of an allergen can have an effect on the individual. This is particularly important to know in regard to peanuts, as peanuts are used in all sorts of cooking oils and ingredients, and are one of the most common allergies for people to suffer from.
Ingredients, Oils and Different Allergies
Depending on what type of item is ingested, different symptoms will present themselves differently. Symptoms of an allergy can present themselves differently, including skin rashes, hives, vomiting and swelling of the mouth, throat, and tongue. An individual who has multiple allergies may also have different symptoms to different items. Remember, allergies can often be hereditary, and so if someone in your family has an allergy, you should definitely learn whether or not you have an allergy.
What to do if you are experiencing these symptoms?
If you are experiencing any of the listed symptoms of an allergy, then you should immediately order a test and also consult a Doctor. It is incredibly important that you know what to do, as an allergic reaction has the potential to be life-threatening. If diagnosed with a food allergy, you must do your best to consistently avoid these items. In particular, if you have severe allergies or asthma, then education and learning can help you to avoid a life-threatening situation.
1. Mullin GE, Swift KM, Lipski L, Turnbull LK, Rampertab SD, Testing for Food Reactions: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Nutr Clin Pract. 2010; 25: 192
2. Sampson HA, Anaphylaxis: persistent enigma. Emerg Med Australas. 2006; 18: 101-2
3. EFSA NDA Panel (EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies). Scientific Opinion on the evaluation of allergenic foods and food ingredients for labelling purposes. EFSA Journal 2014; 277.
4. Wachholz PA, Durham SR, Mechanisms of immunotherapy: IgG revisited. Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol. 2004; 4: 313-8.
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