Integrative Nutrition Blog

Insights on Autoimmune Health and Inflammatory Conditions

Food Sensitivities, MRT and LEAP

May 20, 2020 | All, Inflammation & Autoimmune Disease

One major trigger of inflammation is food sensitivities. Food sensitivities are very complex reactions that are difficult to detect because the reaction is either delayed or dose dependent. Food sensitivities are different than food allergies. Allergies are a specific immune response initiated by IgE antibodies that trigger mast cells to release histamine (and a few other nasty chemicals), which causes your throat to swell and other unpleasant side effects. Food allergies are life threatening. Food sensitivities also involve immune cells. The mediators released by these cells are inflammatory chemicals that include cytokine, prostaglandins, and many others. They are not life threatening but can cause unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, gas, joint pain and migraines. 

One food sensitivity test that has over 90% reliability, specificity and sensitivity is the Mediator Release Test (MRT). This test challenges a blood sample to up to 170 different food and food chemical antigens and measures the total amount of mediators released to that specific antigen. MRT is different from other similar tests because it measures ALL mediators. Other food sensitivity tests on the market only measure IgM and/or IgG mediated reactions.

The Lifestyle Eating and Performance (LEAP) protocol is an elimination diet based on the results of the MRT test. Foods are ranked as non-reactive (green), moderately reactive (yellow) and highly reactive (red). Yellow and Red foods are immediately eliminated from the diet, and green foods are slowly introduced over a 1-2 month period. This helps to calm down the immune system to better identify food triggers. Over time, more foods are introduced. At 3 and 6 months, yellow and red foods are introduced, respectively. 

For years I was highly skeptical of LEAP. This past summer I figured I had nothing to lose and gave it a try. I wish I would have done this sooner. Within 2 weeks my fatigue and brain fog improved. I had one joint on my right hand that was always swollen and I had tried everything to make the pain go away: cortisone injections, CBD cream, aleve, advil…the works. Within 3 months of starting LEAP, the pain in my joint and swelling went away. My digestion also improved to the point where I no longer felt bloated. I also lost about 7 pounds of water weight due to the inflammation I was holding in my body.

​If you suspect food sensitivities may be contributing to your inflammation, fatigue, digestive issues, migraines, eczema or other unpleasant symptoms you might be experiencing, the LEAP protocol may be something to consider. I am now a Certified Leap Therapist. Please reach out to schedule a FREE 15-minute call to see if I can help.

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