Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Hi-Precision Diagnostics + Food Intolerance Test

A few days ago, my son participated in his first Palarong Pambansa-NCR games. It is his first regional meet; and of course, being the proud mama that I am, I wanted to see him off as the school bus carried him, his coach and his team mates to the venue.

But at the end of the 3-day meet, my body was already feeling the hectic sked of early morning food prep for the girls’ lunch baon, sending him off mid-day to the competition venuel, after-school pick-up for the girls and then dinner prep for the family at night. Yes, this mama is slowly realizing that I am not as invincible as I once thought…

As part of this slow realization that we are not invincible, C and I have started doing our annual blood test since a few years ago.  We've tried both going to the lab and having it done at home.  C and I both agree that home-service is the best way to do it because it saves us time since we don’t have to go to the clinic, get a number and wait for our turn. With the home-service, we simply schedule for the earliest slot and wait for the medical technician in the comfort of our home, in our pambahay. And as soon as she leaves, we can go right to eating breakfast like nothing happened.
The blood extraction for my Food Intolerance Test was quick and almost painless.
I think she was out the door in less than 10 minutes.



What Is Food Intolerance Test?

With today’s growing health threats, the classic saying “prevention is better than cure” is more relevant than ever. When Hi-Precision Diagnostics asked me if I would be willing to take part in their newly offered Food Intolerance Test, I knew my answer would definitely be “of course!”

I have already heard of the Food Intolerance Test from a few friends who have had it done a few years ago. The test determines which food that our body is reactive to or unable to digest. Food intolerance is our body’s abnormal reaction to certain foods which can manifest itself in a number of ways. Symptoms can include severe headaches or migraine, irritable bowel syndrome, skin rashes, respiratory conditions, feeling of being bloated, chronic fatigue and even weight control problems.

Hi Precision Diagnostics offers the Food Intolerance Test in its centers, or you can also request to have it done at the convenience of your own home. Since we have been availing of the home-service for several years now, I just chose to do a home service blood extraction.

When I was invited to an intimate lunch at Chef Jessie to discuss the results of my Food Intolerance Test with Hi-Precision's Vice President for Sales and Marketing Melissa Ongsue- Lee, I was excited and anxious at the same time. Excited because I know Chef Jessie was the one who prepared the Papal meals when Pope Francis visited Manila; and Melissa told us that our lunch menu would be similar to what Chef Jessie served the Pope. Yay! Anxious because results of my Food Intolerance Test might reflect the recklessness of the food choices I made during my youth... my sins might finally catch up with me.  Nay!

left to right: Melissa Ongsue- Lee, HPD Vice President for Sales and Marketing; ME; Dr. Julien Kirby, Regional Sales Director for Omega diagnostics Group, UK; Mr. Mitch Genato, Managing Director for Global Medical Technologies


Here's the feast that everyone enjoyed as we tried very hard to dust off all concerns about the results of our Food Intolerance Test to the back of our minds. Enjoy muna! 


Pan-fried Cod Fish Fillet in Tomato Herb Sauce, served with Wild Rice Vegetable Risotto. 

Beef Bourguignonne, served with Wild Rice Vegetable Risotto.

Princess Carmen. This is Chef Jessie's most famous dessert, which is a sans rival with pistachio nuts.

Over lunch, Melissa shared with our group that she used to suffer from terrible migraine attacks every night. It was only when she took the Food Intolerance Test that she found out that she was intolerant to cow's milk. When she eliminated cow's milk from her diet, her migraines stopped almost like magic.
“In the case of food intolerance, symptoms often appear hours or even days later. In fact, following the elimination of problem foods, many sufferers have realized that they had been experiencing minor symptoms as a result of intolerance for their entire lives,” Melissa said.  

What Causes Food Intolerance?

The way that Dr. Julien Kirby explained it to us was that certain foods are seen as "foreign" by the body. The body reacts to these "foreign foods." Normally, if we have a healthy immune system no symptoms occur because our body is able to fight the "foreign foods."
In a healthy intestinal flora, there are more than enough of the healthy cells (images on the left shown in green) to overpower the foreign food (middle image shown in red) 


But sometimes the body defenses become overloaded and the immune system is compromised, that's when symptoms occur
A compromised immune system doesn't have enough "soldier cells" (green image on the left) to attack the invading "foreign body" (red images in the middle)


Still, for some, the lining of their intestinal wall is damaged (notice the "gut" here to be broken down as opposed to the first two pictures shown above) that makes the foreign food pass through much easily.
A leaky gut causes a situation where the good guys (green image) are overpowered by the "bad guys" (red image)

My Food Intolerance Test Results

The Test Reports come out in two categories:
a. Food Groups: Dairy/Egg, Grains, Fruits, etc to make it easier for us to make the necessary dietary changes while navigating the grocery aisle. 
b. Order of Reactivity: food are listed according to the strength of antibody reaction.  Foods are categorized as Elevated (in red), Borderline (in yellow) and Normal (in green).  

Red indicates a high antibody reaction was detected, and considered the primary "problem foods." It is strongly suggested that red food items be eliminated from diet for at least 3 months. Yellow indicates moderate problem food, which should be reduced for at least 3 months. Green indicates that these food can be eaten without restriction.

My test results showed a total of 35 red items. With my top offenders being: mussel, cola nut, egg white, corn and wheat.  I love bread and eggs, so it will be quite difficult to take that out from my diet. But I have been doing some research already on egg substitution so you can look forward to getting egg-less recipes from me in the next few months. 

"Anong Cola Nut?" almost all of us had that on our list. They said it is found in Coke, store-bought cakes and cookies. 
This particular type of Food Intolerance Test covers a comprehensive number of 222 individual foods. Blood sample is retrieved through extraction and the results are given in as fast as 10 days. Also included in the package is a free consultation with the doctors and dieticians for the effective implementation of the necessary dietary changes.

Because this is a highly specialized test, the cost is quite prohibitive at P15,000. But then again, if we view our health as our greatest treasure, then surely spending our hard-earned money on the Food Intolerance Test seems like a wise decision. It's cheaper than a hospital confinement, that's for sure!

Here I am with the SoMoms in our seemingly cordinated outfits.
(left to right) Jackie of Go Jackie Go, Michelle of My Mom-Friday, Mish of Momma N Manila


What Can I Now Eat?


Part of the service of the FIT is helping patients develop an achievable, sustainable and enjoyable dietary plan.  It involves avoiding or cutting down intake of reactive food items.

There is a certified nutritionist who sat down with me to discuss my food options. And since I also suffer from acid reflux, I brought that up with her as well. She helped me by interpreting my result and by giving me a list of food alternatives to plan my new diet.

A sample chart is shown below, but of course it doesn't replace the advice of a trained nutritionist to make sure you are not missing out on nutrients.


In general, it really just says that a HEALTHIEST diet is one that is a BALANCE OF EVERYTHING! I personally do not feel the need to go vegan, vegetarian, go Paleo, etc.



Hi-Precision Diagnostics

Among the range of special diagnostic tests, HPD offers the Food Intolerance Test (FIT), which can guide an individual’s nutrition in order to achieve health goals. The FIT determines which food that your body is reactive to or unable to digest.                                  


To ensure client’s convenience and comfort, the company also offers home service to individual clients but also Mobile on Site services to hospitals, health maintenance organizations, corporations from various industries.

 Also, patients can easily check their results online without having to go back to the laboratory. 



For more information about Hi-Precision Diagnostics, the Food Intolerance Test, as well as other diagnostic tests, visit www.hi-precision.com.ph or contact their hotlines, (02) 741-7777 or (02) 863-9999.




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