Could IgG food allergy testing from ImuPro be an option for you?Check it out
Here you will find answers to the most commonly asked questions about ImuPro in general, the change in diet, contraindications and many more.
It is sufficient if the patient has fasted 2-4 hours prior to the blood withdrawal. A 12 hour-fasting, which is necessary in laboratory diagnostics to determine quite a number of parameters, is not mandatory for IgG tests. However, you should bear in mind that blood samples taken shortly after a meal are often lipemic. These samples show a considerably worse test variance. It should also be recommended to the patient that the last meal taken before the blood withdrawal should not have been a fatty meal. In practice, this means: There is no problem if, for example, the patient has had a normal breakfast at 8 o’clock and comes for the blood withdrawal at 11:00. Yet it is not advisable if the patient has had a heavy lunch at 1 o’clock and comes for the test at 2.30.
The test is performed using the ELISA method which is a well-established standard procedure in laboratory analysis. Our results are reliable and reproducible and are checked through regular quality controls in labs across different countries.
The ImuPro test detects IgG food allergies. Symptoms related to IgG food allergies may occur between 8 and 72 hours after the consumption of the offending food or additive. These delayed food allergies (type III) are mediated by a build-up of IgG antibodies in the blood. Standard allergy tests (like the skin prick/scratch test) are designed to detect classic IgE allergies (type I). They analyse immediate reactions to ingested food. Type I allergies are different to the delayed IgG allergies (type III) that the ImuPro test is looking for. Therefore, the results are not comparable.
IgG stands for “Immunoglobulin G”. Immunoglobulins are the antibodies found in your blood. They are used by the immune system to identify and neutralise foreign objects, such as bacteria and viruses. Everybody has IgG antibodies in their blood but occasionally these antibodies can start to react against foods. This is what can cause food allergies or delayed-onset food allergies (food intolerance). IgE mediated allergies (type I) are completely separate to IgG mediated allergies (type III). An IgE allergy is a traditional “true” allergy where symptoms occur immediately, rather than delayed in the case of IgG food allergies. IgG reactions increasingly occur in case of a disturbed intestinal flora, but decrease if the change in diet is kept to. IgE reactions occur occasionally and remain for your whole life. The IgE findings must be taken into account in addition to the ImuPro results when changing your diet, since the foodstuffs tested positively for IgE antibodies must always be avoided.
This cannot be generalised. Food allergies are a very individual matter. What is good for one person may be problematic for another. Years of experience with ImuPro tests, however, have shown that milk and dairy products as well as varieties of cereals trigger immunological reactions in quite a number of people. Gluten, egg white, dairy products and brewer’s/ baker’s yeast are very strong antigens which you absolutely have to avoid in case of an allergy – which is not always easy as they are often hidden in innumerable industrially manufactured products.
No, this is not normally necessary. Even if a new test does not detect particular antibodies, this does not mean that you can recommence eating all the foods and additives to which an intolerance was detected. The immune system has a memory and reactivates the production of antibodies when it comes in contact with a food or additive which it has previously had a reaction to. However the production of antibodies is generally reduced through implementing the necessary diet changes as the antibodies are no longer created by the immune system when the diet is changed. The resumption of the natural function of the intestine is an indicator that the production of antibodies has been reduced. The test would only need to be repeated if the symptoms were to reoccur, though this would be unlikely if you are keeping to your diet and rotation plan instructions. If the test is to be repeated it is recommended that two years elapse between tests.
Some of your symptoms / complaints may be caused by something other than food intolerance. These causes cannot be detected with ImuPro. They include certain defects in the intestinal flora, enzyme defects and hormonal problems (particularly in women). Other sources can be environmental contaminants, heavy metal burden and dental metals.
An occasional mistake in your change in diet is not too serious. If you accidently consume a foodstuff containing a prohibited hidden ingredient you might feel less well for 3 days. If you do not repeat this mistake, your body will recover soon.
Do you rarely cook for yourself, but usually eat in the canteen or in a restaurant? This makes the change in diet a bit more complicated – but far from impossible. You usually cannot see which ingredients have been used for ready-made meals or canteen food. But these hints help you to manage your change in diet: In the restaurant or canteen, you should avoid sauces. Grilled meat or fish with potatoes or rice, vegetables or salad normally don’t cause problems. (Keep your foods to avoid in mind.) You may order the salad without dressing and then use a dressing you brought along with you. Especially for lunch in the canteen, you can bring your own food with you: Make dinner your main meal and cook a larger portion. You can then use the leftovers for a salad for lunch next day. (If you have chicken with rice, for example, you can prepare a rice salad with chicken, topped off with avocado or mandarin.) In the restaurant, ask the waiter which ingredients were used to cook the dish you have chosen.
First of all, just because there is no visible symptom caused by IgG antibodies, it doesn’t mean there is no reaction at all. If the immune system builds IgG antibodies to attack a certain food you have eaten, this will lead to an inflammation, but this inflammation might not be visible from the outside. Secondly, ImuPro doesn’t claim to show a connection between a food and a certain symptom. It is a first step in finding foods that might cause you problems. ImuPro detects IgG antibodies against food, i.e. delayed food allergies. These foods are eliminated from your diet so that the inflammation is stopped and your body can recover. Then the eliminated foods are reintroduced to your diet. This provocation is done one food at a time, and helps to identify specific foods which cause problems. If the symptoms reappear, you will know that the food you have just reintroduced caused you problems. (By the way, this strategy is also used in IgE-mediated classic allergy.)
Malnutrition doesn’t occur with ImuPro for two reasons: rotation and reintroduction. Having used the ImuPro test to identify your possible trigger foods, a diet plan is created that removes those foods and rotates allowable foods on a 4/ 5 day basis. This maintains variety and nutrition and ensures that your body is supplied with everything it needs. After the provocation phase, certain foods may possibly be reintroduced to your diet. This means you will have even more foods to rotate, guaranteeing a diversified and balanced diet. What critics say is not true for ImuPro. ImuPro is a helpful tool if you suffer from chronic inflammatory diseases such as diarrhoea, flatulence, migraine, excess weight or skin diseases. ImuPro helps you to find possible trigger foods. By eliminating these foods the inflammation can be stopped. The reintroduction (provocation phase) then shows if and which foods are causing your symptoms.
The ImuPro tests and antigens are manufactured by the German company R-Biopharm under strict quality management ISO 9001 and ISO 13485 systems that have been accredited by the DQS according to the international standards ISO 9001 and EN 46001 (medical devices). In 2003, the company gained ISO 13485 quality management accreditation. All of the reagents used in the test have CE approval. Due to the fact that ImuPro tests are processed in more than 20 laboratories worldwide, each run by specialists in this field, we are even able to conduct inter-laboratory trials on a yearly basis to ensure the consistency and quality of each and every step of this test.
Children over 12 months old can take the test. If the child is under 12 months old we would recommend that the mother is tested, as she has passed her antibodies on to the child during pregnancy through the placenta. It is easier to draw blood from an adult and the concentration of antibodies is higher. A baby’s immune system is not fully developed and doesn’t have the same buffering capacity as the mother’s does.
Yes you can still take the test if you are on a restricted diet. However, your reactions to the foods that you have been avoiding will be much lower than if you were on an unrestricted diet so you just need to be aware of this. If you have avoided certain foods for more than 6 months, expect the result to be negative as IgG to foods disappear when the food is not consumed.
Provided you are not taking immunosuppressant drugs, your results will not be affected by being on a short course of antibiotics. A long course of antibiotics, however, can compromise the intestinal flora and may cause a higher number of reactions to be detected. If you are currently taking any medication you should advise the ImuPro team, just to be certain.
Certain medications can affect the results of the ImuPro test, so if in doubt, the patient should check with the ImuPro team. A long course of antibiotics can interfere with the results. If you are taking, or have taken, a long course of immunosuppressant medication such as cortisone, steroids, prednisone etc., this may also affect the results. You should let the ImuPro team know your concerns prior to ordering the test so that the team can advise you of whether it will be a problem.
The concentration of steroids in these inhalers is usually so low that they don’t affect the results of the ImuPro test.
The cortisone cream should not interfere with the test if the concentrations are low and the effect is local. If the patient doesn’t take tablets, she should do the ImuPro test. To be absolutely sure, we recommend determining the total IgG value in serum. If it is not decreased below the reference range, no negative impact on the ImuPro result should occur.
From our experience there are no problems with patients having a cold or even having a temperature. It is more of a precaution. If a patient has a temperature we advise patients to wait until after their temperature has gone before having their blood sample drawn.
TNF blockers have so far not been shown to have any adverse effect on results from an ImuPro test. To ensure that this is the case we would advise determining the total IgG antibody levels in a sample first and if the levels are in the normal acceptable range, then you can proceed with the test .
Alcoholic beverages are semi-luxuries and should be avoided during the first stage when the immune system is stabilized. Later on in the dietary change, you may allow yourself a glass of dry or sparkling wine now and then. The ImuPro tests do not analyse the beverages themselves, but rather their ingredients, such as grapes, cereals, yeast and malt. If you have increased quantities of IgG antibodies to one of these ingredients, you will have to do completely without the beverages during the avoidance period.
Coffee is not recommended. In particular the roasting substances contained in the coffee have an irritating effect on the intestinal mucosa. This increases the permeability of the intestine for foodstuffs. Roasting substances also increase the acid production in the stomach leading to heartburn, bloated feeling and sickness and additionally straining the intestinal mucosa. Past experience with ImuPro tests has shown that going without coffee has a positive effect. It is therefore recommended to avoid coffee even if no reaction was detected in the test. It would be best to change over to herbal or fruit drinks. The stimulating effect of caffeine can be obtained by drinking black or green tea as well – it should, however, be drunk in rotation and not every day. Another alternative for caffeine is guarana, a tropical plant.
Vegetable and fruit juices or smoothies are actually not really drinks, but rather liquid food, since very large amounts of fruit or vegetables are necessary for a glass of squeezed juice. If you still want to drink a glass of fruit or vegetable juice now and then, dilute the juice with water and buy juice with 100% fruit content without added sugar. Note: Only fruit and vegetables that you showed no reaction to are allowed.
Caffeine is an ingredient in coffee beans. We test coffee beans as a whole so we can’t distinguish between coffee and caffeine in the test. It could be that you react to both elements or only one of them. At the start avoid coffee and caffeine. Wait for at least 3 weeks, or until your symptoms have stabilised, and then try a drink with caffeine in it.
All fermented drinks made from gluten containing grains must be avoided, such as beer, but also malt drinks. Check the ingredients list for industrial smoothies and milk shakes. All spirits are gluten free unless gluten was added after distillation (cocktails). Malt whiskeys are gluten free, as nothing was added after distillation, just maturation in barrels.
No, there is not. Most milk alternatives are calcium-enriched. If you stick to the rotation, an undersupply of calcium is not to be expected. Broccoli for example contains a high proportion of calcium. In case of an increased requirement of calcium, the intake in orthomolecular dose with meals is recommended.
No. With ImuPro, we are testing antibodies to specific proteins of the concerned food. Lactose is not tested in our test, because lactose is not a protein but a sugar which cannot lead to antibody production. Lactose intolerance is an enzyme deficiency, either genetic or acquired. It is the inability to digest this sugar. Lactose-free milk contains the same proteins as normal milk. Milk contains up to 30 major proteins. While casein is the major protein in milk, we don’t differentiate in our test which protein has caused a reaction. We see that when we test milk-positive patients for casein, a significant percentage of them do not react to casein, but to some other ingredients. So, if the patient consumes casein-free milk, they might be able to tolerate it, but we cannot predict this. It would be best to totally eliminate milk products for the recommended time. After that, the patient should challenge himself, products that he reintroduces.
Cooked milk is milk boiled for at least 30 minutes, cooled down and the developed skin is removed. During boiling, the proteins of the milk are degraded and most of the antigenic structures are destroyed. In most cases, patients with a reaction to cow’s milk can tolerate boiled cow’s milk. Only if the reaction to cow’s milk is directed against a heat stable antigen does the intolerance also remain for boiled milk. If you boil the milk for 30 minutes and remove the skin, you should be able to drink it. Cooked milk contains the same amount of calcium as raw milk. Pasteurized milk is only heated for 15 seconds at 75°C. UHT milk is heated for 1-2 seconds to 135°C; this is to decontaminate the milk from infectious agents. The quality of the proteins of UHT milk is not altered. In other words, pasteurized milk and UHT milk are to be considered raw milk (with regard to ImuPro).
No, it is not a different food group. Buffalo milk and its derived products are to be considered cow milk or dairy. In a former version of ImuPro, we had buffalo milk in the test, but the results were 99% identical to cow’s milk. Therefore we changed buffalo milk for another food, as it was not worthwhile to test it separately.
As both forms of cheese still contain the proteins from the cow’s milk used to make the cheese we would advise you not to.
Lactose intolerance is different to having an IgG food allergy to milk or dairy products.
Lactose intolerance is the body’s inability to digest lactose (the sugar present in milk) due to a lack of the required enzyme. ImuPro does not look for enzyme activity in the body. It looks for the production of IgG antibodies to a particular food protein. You might have a type III food allergy to dairy products, but this does not necessarily mean you are lactose intolerant and vice versa.
The patient’s fear is correct. We know that antigens can also be absorbed by the skin. She should avoid this shower gel.
Halloumi is a special cheese, because the milk used for its production has been cooked in several steps for a longer time up to 90°C. During this process, the milk used (even cow’s milk) will lose some of its antigenicity which makes this cheese more tolerable for people with a milk allergy. This has been observed by a Turkish professor with her Crohn’s disease patients at Istanbul University. Here milk allergic patients could tolerate Halloumi, but no other cheeses. Only when the antibody is directed to a heat resistant epitope, does an allergic reaction to Halloumi persist. For this reason, we decided to test for Halloumi, in order to offer a possible additional alternative to patients with a milk allergy.
Cereal extracts only contain water soluble proteins while gluten is only soluble in alcohol – that means cereals extracts only contain cereal specific proteins and no gluten. The consequence: If a patient doesn’t show a reaction to gluten, but does react to different sorts of flour then there is an intolerance to the specific proteins of the flours. This is quite rare. Yet if there is such a case, then it means that the patient has to avoid the flours in question even if an intolerance to gluten hasn’t been detected.
The fact that wheat is positive and gluten is negative is a very normal situation. Wheat proteins consist of gluten and wheat specific proteins. As gluten is not water soluble, we have to extract gluten with alcohol and to test gluten in an extra cavity. This cavity does not contain the other water soluble proteins of wheat. Accordingly, the wheat cavity does not contain the gluten molecule. So these are two completely different tests and it is possible to be sensitized to either of them or both of them. In the first case, only one allergen (gluten or wheat) is tested positive and in the second case wheat and gluten are positive.
Durum wheat reacts exactly the same way as normal wheat. The different wheat species have the same major antigens. What differs is mainly the quantity of certain proteins and enzyme or the content of starch. You can trust the result for gluten and the wheat specific proteins in the ImuPro test to also be valid for durum wheat.
All products containing egg white. Egg white is contained in quite a number of food products. Egg white proteins may be hidden behind the following naming: yolk egg white, ovalbumin, livetin, albumin, lysozyme, E 1105, globulin, ovomucoid, lecithin, E233. If you have to avoid egg white, you can replace the binding effect by mixing 1 tablespoon of soybean flour with 2 tablespoons of water to a paste. In case of soybean incompatibility, the soybean flour may be replaced by maize flour and potato flour by rice flour. Be aware that wine can contain egg white.
Pure sourdough fermentation is mainly done by lactobaccilli, a bacterial strain, and hardly any yeast. So if the baker doesn’t add yeast on purpose, sourdough bread should not contain high quantities of yeast. For vinegar it is similar, the final fermentation of vinegar is done by bacteria, acetic acid bacteria mostly from high percentage alcohol, not yeast. Industrially produced vinegar hardly contains any yeast; maybe some hand-made vinegar might contain higher amounts of yeast.
No, you do not since citric acid is a single molecule produced chemically. You have reacted to the proteins contained in lemon.
No, you do not. Vanillin is a chemically produced flavour and has a different composition.
The relation between allergy and craving is known. When you feel a sudden craving for foodstuffs, try to hold out. These episodes of craving normally subside after three to five days. Distraction might be useful: for example with pleasant scents in a fragrance lamp or essential oil for the skin.
You may. You should, however, attune your sweets to the rotation plan. Choose for example sweet maize biscuits if you use maize on that day or spelt crackers on your “spelt day”. However, you should avoid industrially produced sweets such as chocolate or cake.
Honey mixture means that ImuPro doesn’t test for a specific honey produced from just one kind of flower. You can get numerous specific honeys, mostly locally. So we opted for the “general honey” you can buy in the supermarket. These honeys are from pooled nectar from different bee colonies harvesting on different flowers. Therefore it is called honey (mixture). So the patient should avoid any honey for the recommended period of time.
The tannin used in our test is synthetic tannic acid. The word tannin covers a large group of substances and is not uniform from one food or plant to another. As tannins have reduced water solubility, the amount of tannins in our food extracts is not high and the amount varies with the ripeness of the fruit. So you cannot relate or correlate reaction to tannin to the proper reaction of a tannin containing food. Sensitisation to tannic acid is more likely due to exposure to added tannic acid in either drugs, creams or transformed food. The advice is to reduce tannic rich food. The risk for adverse reaction in this patient is probably more to added tannic acids in products rather than in naturally complex tannin containing foods.
Aspergillus is a mould; it forms spores. These are extremely resistant to heat, cold, dryness. They can survive a long time and under extremely harsh conditions. Freezing doesn’t achieve anything, it makes it even worse. Heating to boiling point for at least 30 minutes can kill all living form but not the spores. After cooling the spores would germinate. To kill them you have to sterilize them, meaning at 125°C at high pressure. I believe it is easier to avoid the concerned food.
No, there is no link between omega-3 fatty acids and reactions to fish. As omega-3 is a fatty acid and separated from the proteins, there are no proteins in omega-3 capsules. But maybe the patient is eating surimi or other fish preparations. These could cross-react with any fish species.
This is a matter of cross-reactivity. It depends on what specific protein(s) your antibodies are directed toward. Many patients can eat certain fish, whereas they react (severely) to others. There are no definitive data regarding cross-reactivity that we can apply to fish in order to guide patients in their choices. Unfortunately, cross-allergenicity between fish is quite complex and has not, to our knowledge, been conclusively defined. However, the fact that they are in separate families does not rule out potential cross-reactivity, and there are no definitive data which would allow you to predict with accuracy whether or not clinical cross-reactivity would occur. Additionally you should also be aware that fish proteins are found in a lot of processed foods, where you wouldn’t expect them, for example in Caesar salad and Caesar dressing, Worcestershire sauce, bouillabaisse, imitation or artificial fish or shellfish (surimi, also known as “sea legs” or “sea sticks,” is one example), meatloaf, barbecue sauce or caponata, a Sicilian aubergine relish.
Crayfish, crabs, shrimps and lobsters are all crustaceans. Where individual results are offered for any of these foods then go by that result. If you get a positive result for 1 or 2 of them but the others are not covered due to the size of test you have chosen then it is best to initially stay away from all of the foods on the list you don’t have a result for. This is because they share some of the same proteins. Once your symptoms have settled down try introducing them one at a time into your diet. If you don’t feel any adverse effects then include them in your rotation diet.
They are present in a lot of flavoured milks, yoghurts and fruit juices. It is also possible to have a cross-reaction to both. Bananas and pineapples have common allergenic structures with latex. If you are allergic or sensitive to latex, a cross-reaction with bananas is possible. You can absolutely react to bananas without ever having eaten one. The indoor plant Benjamin’s fig is another possible source for this allergen. If you are sensitive to the plant, you shouldn’t have it in your house. There may also be cross-reactions with avocados and melons.
Yes, cosmetics containing extracts of IgG positive foods in the ImuPro test have to be avoided. The skin is also a very reactive immune organ, and the experience we have had showed us that products on the skin or even inhaled antigens like lavender have led to symptoms. We also know from our experience in environmental medicine, that if someone reacts to titanium oxide, they have to eliminate all cosmetics and tooth paste containing TiO2.
We understand your concerns, but when you are supplying your body with carbohydrates in foods you are reacting to, especially gluten, you will have a loss of energy and physical power due to inflammatory processes. There are still some carbohydrates which you can eat (e.g. rice, potatoes, corn, etc.) so you can get your carbohydrate intake through those. If you do not have a positive result for yeast then you can eat gluten-free breads. You may have to eat larger portions or more regularly. You could also increase protein and fat intake with high quality fats rich in omega-3. Calcium supplements are a good idea as you will lose a lot of minerals during competition. Preliminary study results with athletes show that an increase of VO2max, reduction of lactate, better recovery and better body/fat composition are achieved while adopting an ImuPro diet.
That depends largely on the type of symptoms. Some changes are seen after two to three days, namely loss of around 2 kg of weight due to release of excess water. Digestive symptoms start to improve after three to five days. Generally, patients report that after three to five days, they feel much better. However, some symptoms, like arthritis or more severe immunological diseases, may take weeks to give a result.
This is very individual. It can happen, but most of the time it doesn’t. We have seen this kind of reaction when people first stop drinking coffee, especially for heavy coffee consumers. They reported an increase in headaches during the first week, but after ten days the headaches completely disappeared.
All foods and additives not included in the test analysis should be avoided during the first 8 to 10 weeks following the test. Afterwards, you should proceed as follows: incompatibilities with rare foodstuffs such as safflower oil, tropical fruits or exotic vegetables such as parsnips are rare. If you would like to try a food which has not been tested, you should note any health problems that occur in the following week. You should also limit yourself to reintroducing one untested food at a time into your diet so that if you do get a response you will know which food has caused it. If you do not have any adverse reactions to the food then you may continue to include it in your rotational diet. Also observe your body weight. If you experience an increase of body weight of approximately 1 kg or more overnight after having introduced a non-tested food, it is likely that you react to this food. Increase of body weight overnight is a sign of an inflammatory response to the food. A consequence of an inflammatory response is the retention of water which you can see on your scale.