Principal Investigator: Rachel Neuendorf, ND
Background & Significance: Up to one-fifth of adults report a food sensitivity or allergy. Symptoms of food intolerance are diverse and include skin rashes, abdominal complaints, fatigue, and mood changes. The gold standard test for food sensitivities is an elimination diet, which can be difficult to assess as reactions can take hours or days to appear. Using IgG antibody testing to identify food sensitivities could provide a more targeted elimination diet approach to relieving symptoms. Studies have shown that people with food sensitivities have an increased gut permeability which is likely caused by inflammation. Systemic inflammation present in people with an elevated BMI may increase the risk of food sensitivities via increased gut permeability and/or chronic impairment of immunological tolerance. An effective method to identify food sensitivities can help people develop an effective dietary plan to reduce sensitivities and improve quality of life.
Research Design & Methods: This randomized, controlled trial will assess the effect of an elimination diet plus nutritional counseling on serum IgG titers after three months. Items eliminated will be determined by serum IgG food antibody testing. A total of 30 participants will be included with 20 participants randomized to the treatment group and 10 to a wait list control group. Outcome measures will be collected at baseline and three month follow-up. The primary outcome will be serum IgG titers for foods that were eliminated during the study based on elevated IgG titers at baseline. Secondary outcomes include quality of life and change in participant-identified symptom severity. Exploratory outcomes will assess changes to BMI and waist circumference.