70% of people believe they have self-diagnosed food allergies - here's how to tell

Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 3:28 pm
Updated Wednesday, 18th December 2019, 9:33 am
Brits are commonly avoiding cows’ milk, regardless of a food allergy or intolerance (Photo: Shutterstock)

Christmas pudding, cauliflower cheese and Yorkshire puddings have been named as the top three foods that will be missing from the table this Christmas because of self-diagnosed food intolerances.

New research has revealed over a third of UK adults believe they have a food allergy or intolerance, but fewer than a quarter have been medically diagnosed.

Three-quarters also agree that food intolerances are becoming more common and over half believe that they are likely to increase over time.

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As a result, only a third of Brits eat everything in a traditional Christmas meal.

A quarter won’t touch the traditional pudding, while 18 per cent will stay clear of pigs in blankets and stuffing.

The top five foods that will be missing from many Christmas dinners this year

Christmas pudding (24%)2. Cauliflower cheese (20%)3. Yorkshire puddings (20%)4. Pigs in Blankets (18%)5. Stuffing (18%)

Seven in 10 people believe they have a food intolerance

Perceived food allergies and intolerances are significantly impacting the UK beyond the festive season, with one in three stating that they now spend more money on food to avoid symptoms such as bloating or constipation. And 29 per cent say they now no longer eat out because they are so unsure about which meals will give them bad reactions.

Seven in ten Brits agree that people believe they are allergic or intolerant to foods without getting a medical diagnosis.

The study also revealed that 63 per cent of those polled manage their symptoms by avoiding so-called ‘bad’ foods.

Brits are also commonly avoiding cows’ milk, regardless of a food allergy or intolerance, with the main reason being to keep healthy.

How to find out if you have a food allergy or intolerance

Allergy experts klarify.me’s research reveals that the main reason Brits are avoiding having their condition medically diagnosed is because they believe they can manage their symptoms without medical intervention, with a third convinced that getting a diagnosis would not change anything.

Dr Ellie Cannon said, “These statistics indicate that Brits aren’t managing their allergies properly with many wrongly self-diagnosing whilst others remain undiagnosed. Good quality home allergy testing, such as klarify.me’s Home Allergy Test, may be a really useful first step in diagnosis - it allows anyone to test for a huge array of allergens and deal with their symptoms once and for all.”

Philip Vaering Petersen, from klarify.me said, “We want to make allergy testing simple and accessible. With the launch of klarify.me’s Home Allergy Test, we’re providing a convenient way to detect sensitisation to a multitude of allergens.

"Our test can identify the body’s reaction to 282 allergens. This technology is also used by medical professionals to support the clinical diagnosis of allergies. All that’s required is to collect a small blood sample at home and send it to our partner lab for analysis."