Medical researchers from Dubai reported in the April ’09 edition of the Middle East Journal of Family Medicine (The Effect of The ALCAT Test Diet Therapy for Food Sensitivity in Patient’s With Obesity) that patients unable to achieve goal weight loss by calorie restriction alone were significantly aided in their attempts when they avoided foods that had been shown by a unique lab test to excite their immune response.
The authors, led by Dr M. Akmal of the Dubai Specialised Medical Centre, pointed out that hidden food allergies, or food sensitivities, are unique to each individual and can cause inflammatory diseases, and an inability to lose weight. Food sensitivities often provoke delayed and chronic symptoms, like IBS, migraine and arthritis, that are not as obvious as the dramatic and immediate onset of "true" food allergies, such as peanut anaphylaxis, but, over the long term, can be just as devastating and are more difficult to detect.
In the course of the 12 week study, the 27 refractory weight loss patients underwent a single treatment: avoidance of foods that were shown to be immune reactive according to blood testing through a system known as the ALCAT test. The study participants showed an average weight loss of approximately 37 pounds (17 kg) plus an average drop of six points of BMI (body mass index) and an average decrease of 30% of body fat.
Dr Fred Pescatore, former Medical Director of the famed Atkins Center and a pioneer in the study of the hormonal and immune system effects of foods, reviewed the findings and said, "I’m not surprised by these results, dramatic as they may appear. I’ve used the ALCAT test with my difficult patients time and time again, and it always works."
Other studies based on the elimination of food sensitivities had previously been reported. In a Baylor Medical College study 98% of subjects also displayed significant improved body composition and/or scale weight following an ALCAT test-based food elimination diet within four weeks. A matched control group that followed calorie restriction alone actually became fatter.
"When I first began to lecture to health professionals about how avoidance of food sensitivities helped the weight loss process, people looked at me like I had two heads," says Roger Deutsch, co-author of the book, Your Hidden Food Allergies are Making You Fat. "Now we know that chronic inflammation, caused primarily by exposure to incompatible foods, is at the root of metabolic problems like diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity. The immune system chemicals block insulin receptors; so, guess what happens to the sugars we eat? – They get stored as fat. Cut the inflammation, cut the fat storage."
Along with avoidance of food sensitivities, Deutsch and other experts also recommend paying attention to the quality of food eaten, getting adequate rest, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle.
(Source: Cell Science Systems: Middle East Journal of Family Medicine: April 2009)