MRT stands for Mediator Release Testing. It’s a test used to identify delayed food allergies or sensitivities. Being in the field, I usually use the term “allergy” for reactions that occur quickly after ingestion to foods like peanuts and shellfish. You know….the ones that make a person’s throat swell, they get shortness of breath, maybe hives….and they may need to use an Epi pen to control symptoms. In extreme circumstances, ER treatment is indicated.
But not all food reactions are immediate. In fact, delayed food allergies (sensitivities) are more prevalent but they are much harder to identify. Many people don’t even realize that their health issues are a result of food triggers in their diet so getting good statistics is difficult to say the least. Why is that? Well, delayed reactions can evoke symptoms up to 3 days later! And the reactions can be cumulative so a small dose occasionally may not provoke symptoms but frequent or large quantities initiate the inflammatory cascade and now symptoms occur. Even the most diligent and meticulous food logger will hit an impasse when it comes to identifying triggers without accurate testing. Why? Because most foods have multiple ingredients. And reactions are dose and frequency dependent so one might not react every time. And, by the time a reaction occurs, a person might have eaten many more meals. One Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich has over 50 ingredients. You might have had one sandwich but identifying the trigger is nearly impossible.
Make no mistake. Delayed food sensitivities ARE an immune mediated pathway…meaning your immune system IS involved. Just a different pathway than those immediate reactions. But they are real and they are implicated in a variety of health conditions – in fact anything involving the immune system (auto immune) or inflammation and just about every chronic disease in our country is on the rise, and has roots in inflammation. It can be a major health condition like:
- Migraines and chronic headaches
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Fibromyalgia and joint pain
- Arthritis (osteo or rheumatoid)
- Skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema, acne
- Any auto immune disease (Rheumatoid, Type 1 Diabetes, Celiac disease, Hashimoto’s, Lupus…)
And it can be hay fever, weight gain, fatigue, dark circles under the eyes, irritability, depression, reflux, constipation or sluggish bowels, thin hair or slow growing hair. Again, Why? 80% of our immune system resides within our gastrointestinal tract. The result is that every time we eat a food that our body perceives as a foreigner, it initiates macrophages, neutrophils and other immune system workers who secrete “mediators” which are their chemical weapons. The mediators pass through to the blood stream and now are responsible for the array of symptoms that occur. It’s the mediators that make people feel sick, and the test I use and trust is the Mediator Release Test. It measures the amount of mediators secreted to 120 common foods and 30 common chemicals. We customize your diet, use a time-tested protocol to calm the beast (your immune system), and get you feeling well pretty quickly.