It’s probably no surprise that many food allergies can be hereditary. It was definitely the case for us.
In 2012, my husband was diagnosed as borderline celiac along with food allergies to soy and eggs. In fact, years of an undiagnosed gluten allergy lead to leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune issues. Luckily, we had a holistic rheumatologist who diagnosed him properly and put him on a treatment plan – including a diet free of gluten, soy and eggs as well as supplements to help heal his gut. We found a Paleo diet to be the most effective in helping to heal his gut, and usually try to stick with a 80% Paleo and 20% gluten free.
Why We Got a Gluten Allergy Lab Test at Home
Soon after my husband was diagnosed with a gluten allergy, I wanted to get my oldest son tested. He was a colicky baby and has battled stomach issues since he was a year old. He used to get the stomach flu every other month or so, and always complained that he had a stomach ache. I truly believe that my son’s stomach issues was a reaction from receiving vaccinations when he was a year old. I distinctly remember within a couple of days after getting the shots, he was up all night throwing up every hour. He never had the stomach flu before then.
So for many years, we dealt with it. I talked to his pediatrician numerous times and she dismissed his stomach issues. “Some kids are just prone to getting the stomach flu,” she said. I knew something wasn’t right, but I didn’t know how to find out or what to do. I wish I knew the signs of gluten sensitivity, but I didn’t make the connection at the time.
An Easy At-Home Gluten Allergy Lab Test
After my husband was tested and diagnosed, I got my oldest son tested as well. We used the GI Health Panel, an at-home lab test from Diagnos-Techs. The GI Health Panel is a non-invasive screen of the gastrointestinal tract, and measures 22 individual, yet related tests utilizing saliva and stool specimens.
The GI Health Panel measures:
- Stool culture for yeast
- Screening for ova & parasites
- Bacterial stool pathogens
- Giardia antigen
- Cryptosporidium antigen
- Trichinella Ab
- Anti-Toxoplasma gondii
- Anti-Ameba histolytica
- H. Pylori Ab (saliva)
- Clostridium difficile toxin
- Occult blood
- Fecal pH
- Total intestinal Secretory IgA
- Intestinal Lysozyme
- Alpha Anti-Chymotrypsin
- Gluten intolerance test
- Food intolerance antibody (dairy, soy, egg)
There are other lab services out there, but we liked that these could be done at home. I’ve learned that this test is very accurate and can be more sensitive (e.g. better at picking up gluten sensitivities) than blood tests for gluten allergies. Get the GI Health Panel here for 10% off (use coupon code PJ10ALL) and get a free consultation with an on-staff health care practitioner.
Stool and saliva samples are taken over the course of a few days. YES. STOOL. SAMPLES. Ugh. I collected two samples for each child over the course of three days, and refrigerated it (first batch must be refrigerated until we can collect the second batch on the third day) until we’re ready to send it off.
Here’s what the lab test kit looks like:
Within three weeks, we got the results back and found that my son had colitis. He had off-the-charts inflammation in his colon, which likely caused some of the stomach flu issues. While a gluten allergy did not positively come up on the test, our doctor recommended eliminating it since my son had keratosis – a benign skin condition that looks like chicken skin. Gluten is a known cause of keratosis. A gluten-free diet was immensely helpful for my son, along with supplements to help heal immune system and reduce the inflammation in his colon. After 6 months, we had him tested again and the colitis was gone.
Since my husband and oldest son had issues with gluten, we decided to become a gluten-free family.
Living Gluten Free
My family has been gluten-free for over two years. It was a tough journey at first to find find that were gluten free and met my other criteria – e.g. GMO free, no artificial colors, no preservatives, organic, etc. For the most part, I’ve learned that many of the gluten-free foods in grocery stores are loaded with toxic chemicals. You wouldn’t believe the chemical additives that are lurking in gluten free foods.
I’ve found that eating whole foods as much as possible and making our own staples have been key to living the gluten free lifestyle that I want for my family. Find my kid-friendly gluten free recipes that the whole family will enjoy.
Photo credit: DepositPhotos.com / BrianAJackson
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