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Why you need to test for allergies (and the easiest assessment you can get)

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Allergies are like annoying neighbors we all must eventually learn to tolerate and live with. Manage the symptoms, avoid the allergens, take a pill if you need to, and you’ll be fine.

As such, most of us don't even bother to find out what we're allergic to and submit to them as soon as symptoms manifest in our bodies.

But allergies are tricky. Sure, they can totally be harmless but you can also develop them late in life, and worst, they can be fatal. They can hit you right in the gut the least you expect them.

Take my case, for example. I was already 27 years old when I was diagnosed with food allergy. I was having the loveliest candle-lit dinner in a five-star restaurant, when a bite of a prawn thermidor dish caused my lips to swell. An hour later, I was rushed to the hospital. Suffice to say, my expensive dinner date was ruined by a stupid allergy.

Surprises and hassles like this can be avoided had I been pre-tested for allergies.

Enter LifeScience Center, a holistic clinic in Bonifacio Global City. The center recently launched the Faber Test, a diagnostic test for allergies, which tests for a broad range of allergens.  Here’s what I learned about the Faber Test.

1. It tests a comprehensive and wide range of allergens. The Faber Test evaluates 122 allergenic molecules and 122 allergenic extracts from 123 different allergenic sources. This includes allergies to mites and other insects, pollen from weeds, grass and trees, epithelia of animals, molds and yeasts, animal food (milk, egg, shellfish, mollusks, etc.), plant food (wheat, corn, nuts, etc.), venom of stinging insects and latex.

2. It can zero in on a specific ingredient. Unlike other allergy tests, the Faber test can zero in on a specific ingredient a patient is allergic to. For example, if I am allergic to egg, it is possible that I am only allergic to the yolk, so I can still enjoy a yolk-less omelette.  Faber Test can also tell if I am also allergic to the animal itself, so this means a visit to a free-range chicken farm is a no-no.

3. The test is over in 20 minutes. According to Dr. Agnes B. Galura, a LifeScience Functional Medicine practitioner, the Faber Test is over in just about 20 to 30 minutes. A small amount of blood will be drawn and unlike other skin tests, even patients with dermatitis such as eczema can be tested. There’s no fasting involved too. However, since the samples will be flown to Italy, patients will have to wait three to four weeks to get the results.

4. Anyone can take the test. The Faber Test can be performed at any age, from infants to the elderly.

5. It’s a proactive, not reactive approach to allergies. Dr. Galura called the Faber test the next frontier in the field of allergy-immunology as it uses nanotechnology. But I think the best way to see it is that having yourself tested is a proactive, rather than reactive approach to one’s health. The results and the information will empower the patient, providing him or her with a more worry-free life.

But it does come with a hefty price tag: P24,500. You might joke the price is something you're allergic too, but kidding aside, LifeScience recommends the test for “those who have done restriction diets that failed, or when you are traveling to an unknown destination or moving homes.”

Incessant allergies can really make one’s life miserable and prevent you from living it to the fullest, so this Faber Test can be worth a shot. — LA, GMA News

LifeScience, 8/F ACCRALAW Tower, 2nd Avenue corner 30th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. Website. +632 8285433. 

Tags: allergies
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