All prices include VAT. All UK orders are sent out FREE of CHARGE by 2nd Class Royal Mail. Royal Mail aim to deliver your mail within 3 to 5 working days. We also offer 1st Class and Next Business Day delivery options as well. These can be selected when you are on the check out page.
For overseas orders the postage charge is based on the overall weight of your order which is then calcualted against Royal Mails Overseas Prices. For overseas orders there is an additional packing charge of 50p per order. All overseas orders are shipped via Airmail.
When you are transferred to our secure server to purchase your products, you will have the option to pay in Euro or US Dollar if you don't wish to pay in UK Sterling.
Food Detective™ is a self test for food intolerance that you can use in the comfort of your own home. You don’t have to go to the doctor or wait weeks to receive results from a testing laboratory. Using Food Detective™ couldn’t be easier with informative step by step instructions to guide you through the simple process.
The testing tray that shows you if you have a food intolerance has areas spotted with food protein extracts. A small blood sample is taken from a finger-prick and is then diluted and added to the tray.
In subsequent steps the use of detector and developer solutions identify the presence of food antibodies through the appearance of one or more blue spots on the tray. Reference to the food layout plan enclosed within the instructions allows you to identify any foods to which you may have an intolerance.
Food Detective™ gives you your results in just 40 minutes.
Simple, safe, accurate and fast, Food Detective™ is the world’s first self test for food intolerance.
Watch the video instructions for the Food Detective Tests
What are the symptoms of food intolerance?
Food intolerance can produce a variety of symptoms and can affect almost any organ. Often patients report multiple symptoms such as gut pain with headaches and skin rash, but some of the common symptoms include:- Anxiety, attention deficit disorder, constipation, diarrhoea, headaches, insomnia, migraines, water retention, arthritis, fibromyalgia, asthma, abdominal bloating, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease, itchy skin, weight control problems, hyperactivity disorder and irritable bowel syndrome.
Are the tests covered by BUPA or any other insurance company?
BUPA does not currently cover the cost of these tests.
What is the difference between food allergy and food intolerance?
A classical food allergy such as peanut or shellfish allergy is usually characterised by an immediate and often severe reaction to exposure to the offending food.
What do the borderline foods mean?
The borderline foods are slightly above the normal values and ideally should be reduced to a minimum in your diet. Therefore, we recommend that you rotate those foods showing a borderline result, once every 4 days if possible.
Is it possible to be affected by foods that are not detected by Food Detective
Some foods may cause a classical allergic reaction involving the production of a type of antibody called IgE. These will not be detected by any IgG food test. There are also many foods that can cause a reaction in the body without involving the immune system but produce symptoms similar to IgG reactions. For example, amines in chocolate, cheese and red wine may cause migraines; some food additives such as tartrazine can cause hives, rashes and asthma; monosodium glutamate in Chinese dishes produces sweating and dizziness; and ‘Nightshade’ alkaloids in potatoes, tomatoes and peppers can affect the joints. These are very difficult to test, but you should avoid them if you suspect they are affecting you.
Food Detective Premium Test
This test identifies foods causing IgG antibody production
which may be involved in various conditions such as food
intolerance, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema and arthritis.
Once identified, the trigger foods may be eliminated from your
diet. This test does not identify classical IgE mediated food
allergies. If in doubt, consult your doctor.
Principles of the test:
The reaction tray is spotted with food protein extracts. A small
finger-prick blood sample is taken, diluted and added to the
tray. Any food antibodies present in the blood bind to the
foods on the tray. In subsequent steps the use of Detector and
Developer solutions identifies the presence of food antibodies
through the appearance of one or more blue spots on the tray.
Reference to the food layout plan allows the foods causing
antibody production to be identified.
Do not use this test if you suffer from a blood clotting
If blood comes into contact with any surfaces, wipe them
Keep all materials in a cool dry place and out of the
reach of children
Once open, do not touch the inside of the reaction tray
and do not expose the reaction tray to moisture or dust
prior to use
None of the solutions included in this test are toxic
according to European Directives. However, handle all
components with care. Avoid ingestion, inhalation and
contact with skin and eyes. In the event of skin contact,
wash the skin area with plenty of soap and warm water.
If swallowed, seek immediate medical advice
Dispose of test solutions into a sink. Ensure that the cold
water is running to flush away and dilute the chemicals.
At the end of the test, pour all unused liquids down the
sink and flush with household disinfectant
After use place the reaction tray, lancets, and sample
bottle containing the glass tube in the plastic bag
provided and dispose of in household waste.
in this pack….
Blood Collection Materials
2 lancets for pricking a finger, sterile, for single use only
(colour may vary).
1 glass tube (marked with band)
1 sticking plaster
1 Sterets swab
Reaction tray - enclosed in a foil pouch with drying agent
Solution A - Red cap.
Solution B - Blue cap; Antibody Detector Solution; 3ml;
Solution C - Black Cap; Developer (Chromogen) Solution; 3ml;
Solution D - White Cap; Wash Solution; 100ml;
Do not open the foil pouch containing the reaction tray until the blood sample has been successfully collected.
2. Wash your hands in warm water as this helps to soften the skin
and encourage blood flow.
3. Select the finger or thumb to be pricked,
clean with the Sterets
wipe and allow to dry.
4. Remove the protective
cap from the Surgilance
5. Place red raised platform
end of safety lancet on
the test site.
6. Gently push Surgilance
safety lancet against test
site to activate the lancet
mechanism. A slight
prick may be felt as the
skin is punctured.
7. Gently massage the
finger in the direction of
the puncture site to obtain
a droplet of blood.
8. Touch one end of the
glass tube against the
drop of blood so that the
blood is drawn into it (3).
Take care that the other
end of the tube is not
covered. It may help to
position the tube over the
edge of a work surface,
holding carefully in place.
Continue filling until the tube is completely full.
9. It may be necessary to use the second lancet to make another
puncture on a different finger if the blood flow stops before the
glass tube is full.
10. When the blood has been collected, remove the cap from the
bottle containing Solution A and place the glass tube into the
liquid. Replace the cap securely and shake gently to disperse
the blood fully.
Section 2: How to carry out the test
Use an area with a sink and running water. Tick the boxes
in the margin when each step has been completed.
1. Remove the reaction tray from the foil pouch. Pour
about half of the
diluted blood sample
into the tray (4).
Gently rock the tray
to ensure that all the
circles on the surface
of the tray are
covered with sample.
If air bubbles are
present in any of the
circles, tap the tray
until they dislodge.
2. Leave the tray for 20 minutes at room temperature
away from direct sunlight.
3. After 20 minutes, empty the tray and flush the sink with
running water. Pour some of Solution D into the tray
so that the entire surface is flooded. Agitate vigorously
for a few seconds to wash, then discard the liquid into
the sink. Repeat this washing step three more times.
Drain the tray thoroughly before proceeding to the next
4. Add all of Solution B (Antibody Detector Solution, blue
liquid) to the tray and gently rock it as described in
step 1. Leave for 10 minutes at room temperature.
5. After 10 minutes, drain the tray and wash it four times
with Solution D as described in step 3. Drain the
washed tray well.
6. Add all of Solution C (Developer Solution) to the
reaction tray. Ensure that all rings of the tray are
covered as in step 1 and leave it to stand for 2 minutes.
Blue dots will appear where reactive foods are present.
After 2 minutes, empty the solution into the sink and
wash with Solution D.
7. Identify the reactive foods immediately after the test is
completed (see below).
Section 3: Reading the Results
Deep blue spots indicate strong positive reactions and paler
spots indicate mild reactions. If there is no colour then this
indicates a negative result. If only a ring of colour is seen,
this should be disregarded.
Foods are located in positions 1-14 on the reaction tray.
Identify which positions have produced a blue spot and
refer to the Test Report on the next page to identify the food
Positions (-) and (+) contain negative and positive quality
controls. For the results to be valid, position (-) must be
white and position (+) must be blue at the end of the test.
Limitations of the procedure:
Accurate results depend on the procedure being
carried out according to these instructions.
The Food Detective results do not indicate any
specific medical condition.
Important notes on test results:
If you are worried about a particular food or suffer from a
classical IgE mediated food allergy e.g. shellfish, but it has
not given a positive result in this test, we advise you to
continue to avoid such foods.
A positive result for gluten does not necessarily indicate
coeliac disease, but we strongly suggest that medical
advice is sought and a coeliac screen be carried out
(available from CNS service laboratory).
Immunosuppressants which are generally given following an organ transplant will reduce the immune system’s ability to generate antibodies. High doses of steroids will also affect antibody production. If you are in any doubt, please consult your GP.
Do I need to completely fill up the capillary tube with blood?
Yes, it is advisable to completely fill the tube as this gives an exact amount of blood required for the test. If you do not fill the tube, then it is possible that any positive results will be weaker than they should be because of a greater dilution of the blood sample.
I don’t seem to be able to collect enough blood to fill the capillary tube, what should I do?
In the unusual circumstances when there is insufficient blood to fill the capillary tube, and both of the lancets provided have been used, then it may be necessary to telephone CNS for a replacement tube and lancets. It is important to make sure that your hands are warm and that you have massaged your sample finger thoroughly before using the lancet.
Do I have to collect the blood sample at any particular time of day?
No, samples can be collected at any time of the day.
What should I do if I am unable to provide a finger prick blood specimen?
Some people find that they cannot easily collect a blood sample. In this case a friend may be able to help with the procedure.
I have been avoiding a food for more than 3 months; will this food show up in the test?
It is possible that the antibody levels will have reduced significantly if you have been completely avoiding that food, and therefore highly likely that the food test will be unable to detect any antibodies. If you wish to test whether you can now tolerate the food concerned and feel that you can cope with the symptoms that may occur, include a portion of that food every day for 5-7 days before taking the blood sample. However, if you know that the food concerned causes you extreme symptoms do not to re-introduce that food at all.
Are there any research papers to support these tests?
Yes, a number of studies have implicated food IgG antibodies in the development of food intolerances and chronic illnesses such as eczema, arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome.
Have there been any trials to support these tests?
An independent audit, conducted in 1998, studied symptom reduction in over 2000 individuals following an elimination diet based on the food intolerance IgG test. The audit demonstrated that more than 70% of patients reported a significant reduction in symptoms after eliminating the foods giving high IgG levels in the test.
What is an IgG?
IgG stands for Immunoglobulin G. Immunoglobulins are antibodies which are produced by the immune system in response to foreign bodies entering the body. There are several different types of immunoglobulins with IgA, IgE, IgG, IgM being the most well known.
What is an antibody, and what is the difference between IgG and IgE antibodies?
An antibody is a specialised protein produced by the body’s immune system when foreign bodies (such as viruses, bacteria and toxins) enter the body. They are produced by special white blood cells called B-Lymphocytes as a defence against these foreign substances. IgE antibodies are a type of antibody mostly found in the skin, nose, lining of airways and lungs, and are usually produced in classical allergies. IgG antibodies are the type of antibodies that CNS test for food intolerances. It has been shown by various studies, that if foods that producing high IgG levels are eliminated from the diet, the symptoms of food intolerance can be reduced.
Why do foods cause an IgG response?
Generally, foods are broken down during digestion into their component parts e.g. amino acids, glycerides etc. These pass harmlessly through the gut into the bloodstream. However, occasionally small fragments of partially digested or undigested foods are able to pass through the gut wall into the bloodstream where they are recognized by the immune system as being ‘foreign’. The immune system responds by making antibodies (IgGs). In some patients, inflammation or irritation of the intestinal lining allows partially digested foods to leak into the bloodstream. This condition is called ‘leaky gut syndrome’ and patients with this condition typically have high levels of antibodies to multiple foods.
Why would some members of a food family come up positive (e.g. soya, haricot, kidney) even though not eaten for years, and yet have no reaction to other members (i.e. lentils, carob, peanuts, peas) that have been eaten?
While members of the same food family may be antigenically similar such that antibodies to one member will cross-react with another member, they will also exhibit antigenic differences depending on how closely related they are. Hence, it is possible that foods that have caused strong antibody responses which remain detectable even though they have not been eaten for years, do not cross react with other members of the same food family. Also, some antigens in foods are less able to initiate an immune response than others i.e. they are less immunogenic and, as a result, antibody production to them is less easily stimulated.
Why do we not test for sugar, alcohol etc?
Food IgG-based food intolerance is caused by proteins and the antibodies directed against them. Sugar and alcohol are not proteins.
Can IgG levels remain high even if not consuming any of that particular food? (i.e. for years?)
Antibody levels may remain detectable some several years after exposure. Because certain foods such as wheat, dairy and corn are widely used as additives in processed foods or cosmetics, IgG levels are more likely to persist in an individual who mistakenly presumes that such foods have been completely eliminated from the diet.
I have been told to eliminate ‘x’ from my diet, but have not eaten it for years, why do I have a high IgG reading?
This is because either a) you have been eating ‘x’ in other foods unbeknown to you, or b) you have been eating foods within the same food family and these are causing antibody production; c) antibodies stimulated by other foods ‘cross react’ with x in the test.
In that case, how do I know that the other results are not due to cross –reactivity?
They may be but to start with your nutritionist will recommend elimination of the food identified by the test.
Should I ignore these results then?
No. Ask your nutritionist to suggest which of the foods you do eat belong to the same food family as x and which might be stimulating antibody production. Your nutritionist may suggest that you eliminate these from your diet too.
Is it possible to have high IgG levels and not experience symptoms?
Yes, some people do have high IgG levels to certain foods but do not have any symptoms at all. This is possibly due to their immune system being extremely efficient at clearing away the antigen-antibody complexes before they have chance to be deposited in the tissues and cause a problem.
Is there any evidence for complexes actually causing symptoms?
A study of infants with milk intolerance showed that symptoms appeared within hours of cow’s milk consumption and that this was accompanied by notable immune complexes appearing in the serum.
Surely even only one positive response indicates a leaky gut?
No, because food antibody responses occur naturally in the absence of increased gut permeability which is the hallmark of leaky gut.
Does a Leaky Gut need to be repaired before those foods can be eaten again without symptoms?
If all food molecules get through, why do some lead to food intolerance and some not?
Two main factors govern the development of an IgG antibody-based food intolerance: the amount of a particular food in the diet and its ability to stimulate antibody production. Foods consumed in large quantities are more often associated with food antibody production, antigen-antibody complexes and symptoms. Some foods are more ‘immunogenic’ than others i.e. are more able to cause antibody production.
What determines which substances get through the leaky intestinal wall?
The composition of your diet and the size of the food particles. Also, minerals require carrier molecules which are often impaired in people with leaky gut. This can lead to mineral deficiencies in such individuals.
What is Leaky Gut Syndrome?
Leaky Gut Syndrome is a condition where large gaps develop between the cells of the intestinal wall causing large quantities of partially digested food to ‘leak’ into the bloodstream. The symptoms of Leaky Gut Syndrome are many and varied and include: abdominal pain, heartburn, insomnia, bloating, anxiety, gluten intolerance, malnutrition, muscle cramps and pains, poor exercise tolerance, food allergies.
Why do high IgG antibody levels cause symptoms?
When a food causes the body to produce high levels of IgG then these antibodies combine with the protein in the food to form an ‘antigen-antibody complex’. These complexes are usually eliminated by other cells in the immune system. However, if the immune system is overloaded, these insoluble molecules become deposited in various areas of the body, such as the head, lung tissue, gastro-intestinal tract, skin and joints where they produce symptoms such as headaches, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema and rashes, and arthritis.
How do we know that the complexes are deposited in certain areas?
Intestinal biopsy studies have shown evidence of immune complexes in patients with cow’s milk sensitive colitis. Other studies have demonstrated deposition of human IgG and cow’s milk proteins in lung tissue specimens taken from infants with pulmonary hemosiderosis.
Results & Questions
Once I have done a test what do I do next?
Once you have the results for your test, it is recommended that you consult a nutritionist registered with BANT, who will help you to understand the results and provide you with advice on dietary changes. You can also consult the CNS Dietary Support Booklet for further information, available online.
Do I need to visit a nutritionist to discuss these results?
Once you have received you results, we advise you to see a nutritionist registered with the British Association for Nutritional Therapy (BANT), who will advise you how to eliminate foods from your diet and which foods you should substitute to ensure that you do not result in any nutritional deficiencies. They may also offer support and encouragement with regular progress checks, as it can be quite a daunting task sticking to a new diet on your own. Check their website for more details www.BANT.org.uk
I have a lot of positive results, how do I cut out everything?
If you have a lot of positive results, it can be a very daunting task trying to cut out everything whilst maintaining a nutritionally well balanced diet. In these cases, we recommend you visit a nutritionist who will help you to avoid the foods with a strong positive response, and to rotate the foods with a lower positive result.
What does it mean if I have lots of positive results?
Potentially, you may have a condition known as ‘Leaky Gut’. You should consult a nutritionist registered with BANT who will be able to give you advice on how to deal with this condition.www.BANT.org.uk
Do I have to avoid these foods for the rest of my life?
No. Once you have avoided those foods for at least 3 months, and you have noticed an improvement in your symptoms, then you can start to gradually introduce the foods back into your diet. You should introduce one food at a time, with an interval of 4 days before trying another food. If you do not notice the return of any symptoms, then you can continue to include that food in your diet on an occasional basis. You may find a food and symptom diary useful whilst re-introducing foods.
How long do I have to avoid these foods?
It is recommended that you should avoid any food with a high IgG level for a minimum of 3 months. If you do not notice any improvement after this period of time, then you can assume that this food is not responsible for your symptoms.
If I avoid foods that show a high IgG reading, how long will it take before the IgG level returns to a normal level?
Over time, the concentration of IgG antibodies to that particular food will gradually decrease. The half life of IgG in the blood stream is approximately 23 days. However, antigens that have been stored in the liver may be slowly released over several months, resulting in some persistent antibody production. The levels, however, will decline gradually, barring any new exposure.
Do I have to eliminate that particular food completely from my diet in order to reduce my symptoms, or can I still have a little occasionally?
The most effective course of action is to eliminate the food completely. As long as exposure is maintained, antibodies will continue to be produced and the immune system primed to react. Exposure to foods of the same food family should also be avoided.
I started to avoid foods from my diet, and now I feel a lot worse, is this normal?
This is a normal reaction for many people in the first few days after excluding a food or foods, due to ‘withdrawal-type’ symptoms. It is quite common to feel worse for a few days, but this phase soon passes and an improvement is usually noticed after a week or two.
Do I need to have a re-test after a few months?
Most people do not need to have a re-test, but if you would like another test we usually advise a period of 12 months in between tests. If your symptoms have improved and you have been able to successfully re-introduce the foods, then a re-test is unnecessary.
If I have been avoiding foods from my diet but would like them tested, how long should I introduce them before the test?
You should introduce a portion of these foods into your diet for at least 7 days before taking the blood sample. However, if you experience severe symptoms as a consequence, should immediately stop eating them and assume that you are still intolerant to them.
Why do I feel sometimes feel better after immediately eating a food that I am supposed to avoid?
Some people find that they feel better for a short while after eating foods to which they have high IgG levels. However, if they continue to eat those foods, the symptoms return. Eating more of the food once again brings relief, creating a vicious cycle of addiction that is difficult to break. This can be overcome by strictly eliminating the reactive food for a minimum of 3 months.