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When people hear “food allergies,” it immediately causes a slight panic. This is especially so when it comes to someone who isn’t used to dealing with food allergies in any capacity. Even if everyone around you is used to them, food allergies should always be taken seriously and cause concern. That being said, there are some people — both living with allergies and not — that don’t feel testing for food allergies is important. The reality is that it is very important for quite a few reasons. Here are five of the top ones to learn about. 

Reasons to get testing for food allergies:

1. It can help predict them in siblings or children: If you’ve got siblings and/or children, discovering that you have a food allergy could be helpful in predicting or anticipating them in those who are biologically linked to you. While allergies aren’t necessarily passed down from generation to generation, there are studies that suggest that allergies in one family member can predict them in another.

2. Allergic reactions can span from irritating to life-threatening: If you are someone that just gets fussy mouth or a runny nose when eating, say, peanuts, it’s easy to wave off allergy testing simply. After all, it’s just annoying at the most. However, allergies can quickly change from mild to severe and can even be fatal. What is a mild itching or discomfort can be anaphylactic symptoms with no warning what-so-ever. That’s why proper diagnosis and documentation of food allergies is important.

3. Testing can be done from home and is economical: Allergy testing doesn’t mean going to a lab and getting poked with a bunch of needles anymore. It can be done at home with a mailed kit that is sent off with a sample, and the results are emailed to you soon after the test is received. No stressful needless or clinic-based tests are going to be involved at all. You can even do the test in your jammies!

4. Allergies can develop later in life: More and more people are discovering that they have food allergies later in life. This means that, unlike previously assumed, food allergies are discovered in childhood and documented (or grown out of). People of any age can develop and suffer from food allergies (even severe ones). 

5. It’s always better to know than not know: The bottom line with food allergies is that it is always better to know than not know. You can amend your eating habits if required, and you’ll be more able to avoid certain problem foods that make you uncomfortable. The more you know about your body and its needs, the better you can treat it.

Whether you are suffering from undiagnosed food allergies, or you just want to understand how your life can improve with proper testing and documentation, testing for food allergies is only going to add to your life. Even if you never thought it was something that you needed, understanding your Body in particularly and what its needs are is always something to be seen as a good thing; testing for food allergies could be a part of that equation.