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How to properly diagnose a food allergy or food sensitivity

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If you are dealing with symptoms such as hives or bloating, you may suspect a food allergy or sensitivity. But how can you determine which foods are causing the reactions? There are so many food allergy and sensitivity tests available, it can be difficult to figure out where to start. But with the right methods and doctor involved, you can often zero in on the problem.

If you search online for “food allergy testing,” you’ll find options including clinical visits with allergists and immunologists and do-it-yourself test kits that claim to deliver comprehensive results (with a 100 per cent money-back guarantee!). Not all of the methods are equally reliable, and some are downright fraudulent. There is no single test that will tell you exactly which foods to avoid. If a website, advertisement or practitioner claims to provide such a test, watch out. Take these steps instead.

It’s important to know the difference between a food allergy and a food sensitivity.
It’s important to know the difference between a food allergy and a food sensitivity.  (CHARLOTTE KESL / The New York Times file photo)

It’s important to know the difference between a food allergy and a food sensitivity. Although the terms are often used interchangeably and symptoms may overlap, they are not the same. A food allergy is an immune system reaction that can cause hives, wheezing, itching, diarrhea, vomiting, shortness of breath and anaphylaxis. About 3.6 per cent of Americans have food allergies, according to a 2017 Brigham and Women’s Hospital study.

Food sensitivity (sometimes called food intolerance) is a reaction that involves the digestive system, not the immune system. Symptoms include gas, bloating, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Although intolerances can be painful and uncomfortable, they are not life-threatening, and are rarely as serious as true food allergies. Anywhere from 2 to 20 per cent of Americans may be sensitive to certain foods — there are no precise numbers because there is no exact diagnostic test.

If you suspect a food allergy, don’t self-diagnose or use at-home test kits. Food allergies are much too serious to assess without an expert. Your best bet is to work with a board-certified allergist, who will perform skin-prick tests and IgE blood tests to narrow down a diagnosis. (IgE, or immunoglobulin E, is a type of antibody produced by the immune system. More IgE is produced during an allergic reaction.) But keep in mind that even these tests are imperfect and may falsely show you are allergic to something.

“Both skin and blood IgE tests have high rates of false-positive results and, because of this, they should never be used as ‘screening tests,’ ” says David Stukus, an allergist and associate professor in the division of allergy and immunology at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio. “Both skin-prick and blood test results must be interpreted in the proper clinical context and with a full understanding of what symptoms occur when that food is ingested. Both are reliable when used appropriately and interpreted in the proper context.”

You may hear alternative practitioners talk about diagnosing food allergies with other tests such as hair analysis, IgG tests (which measure immunoglobulin G, another antibody produced by the immune system), facial thermography and muscle testing. It’s important to note that the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Food Allergy in the United States says these tests “lack evidence demonstrating any value in diagnosing food allergies.” They also can set you back a few hundred dollars each, and you might endanger your health with inaccurate results.

The gold-standard food allergy test is an oral food challenge done in partnership with your allergist, which may be done in conjunction with IgE and skin-prick tests. For an oral food challenge, you will eat small amounts of the suspected allergen and watch for a reaction in the safety of the doctor’s office (with antihistamines and epinephrine on hand in case of serious reactions).

“Diagnosing food allergies is complicated and requires someone with proper training to obtain a detailed clinical history and interpret test results,” Stukus says. “Self-diagnosing food allergy with home testing is filled with pitfalls and often leads to misdiagnosis and unnecessary food elimination. It also runs the risk of missing other conditions or factors that may have been the true cause of symptoms.”

Unfortunately, there are no validated tests to diagnose food sensitivity, even though marketing leads consumers to think many test methods are accurate and reliable. Don’t believe the hype.

Most of the excitement surrounds the IgG test (again, different from the IgE blood test), which is marketed as a way to identify hidden food sensitivities or intolerances. Stukus says this is not an evidence-based recommendation, and the IgG test is more likely to indicate the foods you commonly eat, not the ones causing you an issue. Studies show that IgG can be a marker of exposure to food and possibly of tolerance — the opposite of sensitivity.

If you suspect a food sensitivity, an elimination diet is the most reliable way to determine your trigger foods. In consultation with your doctor or dietitian, you will remove foods from your diet that you suspect are causing reactions such as gas and bloating. You will later reintroduce the foods one at a time, and keep track of symptoms to see which foods cause a reaction. And hey, no fancy kits to buy — regardless of the money-back guarantee.

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Bill Gates: Third Shot May Be Needed to Combat Coronavirus Variants

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With more than 40 million Americans having received at least the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, a third dose may be needed to prevent the spread of new variants of the disease, Bill Gates told CBS News Tuesday.

Gates’ comments come amid growing concern that the current vaccines are not effective against the more contagious Brazilian and South African variants.

Pfizer and Moderna have stated that their vaccines are 95% and 99% effective, respectively, against the initial strain of COVID. However, some scientists have questioned those statements. Additionally, the World Health Organization and vaccine companies have conceded that the vaccines do not prevent people from being infected with COVID or from transmitting it, but are only effective at reducing symptoms.

Gates told CBS Evening News:

“The discussion now is do we just need to get a super high coverage of the current vaccine, or do we need a third dose that’s just the same, or do we need a modified vaccine?”

U.S. vaccine companies are looking at making modifications, which Gates refers to as “tuning.”

People who have had two shots may need to get a third shot and people who have not yet been vaccinated would need the modified vaccine, explained Gates. When asked whether the coronavirus vaccine would be similar to the flu vaccine, which requires yearly boosters, Gates couldn’t rule that out. Until the virus is eradicated from all humans, Gates said, additional shots may be needed in the future.

AstraZeneca in particular has a challenge with the variant,” Gates explained. “And the other two, Johnson & Johnson and Novavax, are slightly less effective, but still effective enough that we absolutely should get them out as fast as we can while we study this idea of tuning the vaccine.”

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is funding the studies being conducted in Brazil and South Africa, CBS News said. The foundation has also invested in the AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and the Novavax vaccines, which are being tested against new variants. Once the AstraZeneca vaccine is approved, the Global Alliance for Vaccine Initiative or GAVI, founded by Gates, will distribute it globally.

“Gates continues to move the goalposts,” said Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., chairman and chief legal counsel of Children’s Health Defense. “Meanwhile the strategies he and others have promoted are obliterating the global economy, demolishing the middle class, making the rich richer and censoring vaccine safety advocates, like me.”

Kennedy said that the exclusive focus on vaccines has prevented the kind of progress required to actually address and recover from the pandemic:

“From the pandemic’s outset, clear-headed people familiar with the challenges inherent in the vaccine model have understood that the path out of crisis would require multiple steps. Those steps would need to include the development and/or identification of therapeutic drugs, the sharing of information among doctors to hone improved treatment models that reduce infection mortality rates below those for flu, and the kind of broad-spectrum long-term herd immunity that protects against mutant strains and that only derives from natural infection.”

Instead, Gates and vaccine makers are proposing a lifetime of boosters, supporting insufficient testing to determine safety and failing to address the inadequate monitoring of vaccine injuries, Kennedy said.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children’s Health Defense.

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Young nurse suffers from hemorrhage and brain swelling after second dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine

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(Natural News) A 28-year-old healthcare worker from the Swedish American Hospital, in Beloit, Wisconsin was recently admitted to the ICU just five days after receiving a second dose of Pfizer’s experimental mRNA vaccine. The previously healthy young woman was pronounced brain dead after cerebral angiography confirmed a severe hemorrhage stroke in her brain stem.

Her family members confirmed that she was “breaking out in rashes” after the vaccine. She also suffered from sudden migraine headaches, and got “sick” after taking the second dose of the vaccine. At the very end, she lost the ability to speak and went unconscious. The migraines, nausea, and loss of speech were all symptoms of a brain bleed and brain swelling, something her family did not understand at the time, and something nobody would expect after vaccination.

While on life support, neurologists used angiography to image the damage inside the brain. They found a subarachnoid hemorrhage, whereas a bulging blood vessel burst in the brain, bleeding out in the space between the brain and the tissue covering the brain. The ensuing swelling cut off oxygen to the brain and caused brain death. On February 10, 2021, Sarah reportedly had “no brain activity.” Some of the woman’s organs are now being procured, so they can be donated to other people around the world.

Doctors warn FDA about COVID vaccines causing autoimmune attacks in the heart and brain

Experimental COVID-19 vaccines may cause inflammation along the cardiovascular system, leading to heart attack and/or stroke. This serious issue was brought forth to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by Dr. J. Patrick Whelan, M.D., Ph.D. and further confirmed by cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. The two doctors warned that a recently-infected patient who is subject to COVID-19 vaccination is likely to suffer from autoimmune attacks along the ACE-2 receptors present in the heart, and in the microvasculature of the brain, liver and kidney. If viral antigens are present in the tissues of recipients at the time of vaccination, the vaccine-augmented immune response will turn the immune system against those tissues, causing inflammation that can lead to blood clot formation.

This severe adverse event is likely cause of death for the elderly who are vaccinated despite recently being infected. There is no adequate screening process to ensure that this autoimmune attack doesn’t occur. The elderly are not the only people vulnerable to vaccine injury and death. Pfizer’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine could be the main cause behind the sudden death of Sarah Sickles, a 28-year-old nurse from Wisconsin. The Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System has captured five permanent disabilities in Wisconsin, 58 ER visits, and eleven deaths in just one month. This is the first case in Wisconsin of someone under 44 years of age suffering from severe COVID-19 vaccine side effects and death. There are now more than 1,170 deaths recorded in the U.S. related to the experimental mRNA vaccines, a reality that the FDA and CDC continue to ignore.

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Powering hypersonic weapons: US armed forces eyeing dangerous 5G tech

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(Natural News) Much of the conversation surrounding the benefits of 5G is geared toward the consumer side of the technology. People will be able to download videos at lightning speed and will be more connected than ever, proponents claim, although there are serious questions regarding its safety. However, some of the most important 5G applications are not civil at all – the technology will be used extensively in the military domain.

Some of its military uses are outlined in the Defense Applications of 5G Network Technology report, which was published by the Defense Science Board. This federal committee gives scientific advice to the Pentagon. Their report states: “The emergence of 5G technology, now commercially available, offers the Department of Defense the opportunity to take advantage, at minimal cost, of the benefits of this system for its own operational requirements.”

The 5G commercial network that is being built by private companies right now can be used by the American military for a much lower cost than if the network had been set up exclusively for military purposes.

Military experts expect the 5G system to play a pivotal role in using hypersonic weapons. For example, it can be used for new missiles that bear nuclear warheads and travel at speeds superior to Mach 5. These hypersonic weapons, which travel at five times the speed of sound and move a mile per second, will be flying at high altitudes on unpredictable flight paths, making them as hard to guide as they will be to intercept.

Huge quantities of data need to be gathered and transmitted in a very short period in order to maneuver these warheads on variable trajectories and allow them to change direction in milliseconds to avoid interceptor missiles.

5G for defense

This type of technology is also needed to activate defenses should we be attacked by a weapon of this type; 5G automatic systems could theoretically handle decisions that humans won’t have enough time to make on their own. Military bases and even cities will have less than a minute to react to incoming hypersonic missiles, and 5G will make it easier to process real time data on trajectories for decision-making.

There are also important uses of this technology in combat. 5G’s ability to simultaneously link millions of transceivers will undoubtedly facilitate communication among military personnel and allow them to transmit photos, maps and other vital information about operations in progress at dizzying speeds to improve situational awareness.

The military can also take advantage of the high-frequency and short-wavelength millimeter wave spectrum used by 5G. Its short range means that it is well suited for smart military bases and command posts because the signal will not propagate too far, making it less likely that enemies will be able to detect it.

When it comes to special forces and secret services, the benefits of 5G are numerous. Its speed and connectivity will allow espionage systems to reach unprecedented levels of efficiency. It will also make drones more dangerous by allowing them to identify and target people using facial recognition and other methods.

Like all technology, 5G will also make us highly vulnerable. The network itself could become an attractive target for cyber-attacks and other acts of war being carried out with cutting-edge weaponry. In fact, the 5G network is already viewed as critical infrastructure and is being carefully protected before it is even fully built.

While the focus on 5G’s dangers to human health and the environment is absolutely warranted, it is also important not to lose sight of the military implications of 5G. After all, it is not just the United States that is developing this technology for military purposes; our enemies, like China and other countries, are also making great strides in this realm.

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