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Fact or fiction: Hair test for food allergies

Reviewed by our expert panel
Fact or fiction: Hair test for food allergies

Can you test for food allergies via kinesiology or hair testing?

Food allergies and intolerances are on the increase in New Zealand. So can we really get diagnosed by sending our hair off to get analysed, or by muscle testing?  Associate Professor Rohan Ameratunga, Adult and Paediatric Allergist and Immunologist says:

"Muscle testing (applied kinesiology), hair testing and EAV (electronic testing) are not part of conventional allergy testing. There is no scientific evidence that allergies can be diagnosed using these methods. The standard medical approach to the allergic patient is history, examination and testing including skin testing and RAST testing. Sometimes more sophisticated testing including food challenges and elimination diets are needed. Ideally, an allergist should be responsible for managing patients with moderate or severe allergic disorders.

"Some patients have food intolerances rather than a true allergy, and sorting this out needs the assistance of an experienced dietitian and allergist."

The bottom line: Myth

In fact there have been several studies conducted which show the exact opposite. If you think you may have a food allergy or intolerance, see your GP and get referred to an allergy specialist. Don't cut out whole groups of foods from your diet without the advice of a dietitian or you risk missing out on important nutrients.

First published: Apr 2007

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