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It might be classed as one of the main superfruits in our modern day supermarket trolley but kiwi fruit is hiding a more sinister ‘ingredient’ other than its plentiful source of Vitamin C. Research from YORKTEST LABORATORIES have discovered the exotic fruit is fast becoming a fruit at the centre of ill health. In a report involving more than 30,000 patients, researchers discovered the number of people showing a positive food intolerance to kiwi fruit rose by over 280% in just 3 years.

In a science that deals with illness through food elimination, the super fruit is being linked to symptoms such as bloating, fatigue, eczema, migraine, and weight gain.

The information reveals that from December 2002 the total number of patients who registered positive to the exotic overseas fruit after taking a YORKTEST 113 FoodScan food intolerance test was 4.4%. In less than three years that increased to 13.7% - a rise of 211%. Most recent figures for the period up to the end of March 2007 suggests a total number of people registering a positive sensitivity to kiwi fruit is 17.1% - a rise of 288%.

Three reasons stand out as to why there may have been an increase in sensitivity to kiwi: -

1) Availability and consumption of the fruit has increased since it was introduced to the UK.

2) A loyal fan base of buyers are eating the food on a more regular basis and becoming sensitive because of more regular contact.

3) Where previously the source of illness may not have been linked to food intolerance, the current medical climate makes it possible to identify particular foods as the root cause of ill health.

Kiwi fruit has been well recognised as a high problem for over 20 years, and clinical knowledge about the allergy has depended on reports on small groups based around classic IgE allergy studies. This is the first time that findings have seen a sharp rise using the clinically proven IgG method and whilst not as life threatening as its biological partner, it shows an alarming rise in potentially kiwi fruit related illnesses.

In the 1970s very little allergy or intolerance to kiwi fruit was reported; however reactions were increasingly reported in the 1980s, predominantly in adults. It was not until the 1990s that kiwi fruit allergy was becoming more commonly reported in children and young infants. Food Intolerances are less life threatening but are even so still have implications on the 45% of people reporting illness through food intolerance (Allergy UK figures).

Almost 30,000 people took part in the study by completing a YORKTEST 113 foodSCAN. Although the patients were not knowingly suffering from a food intolerance to kiwi fruit, the majority did take the IgG test because they were suffering from some kind of ill health or symptomatic pain.

Researchers are keen to point out that official consumption of the fruit rose from £21.6 million in 2002 to £46 million in 2006 – a rise of 113%. This still falls short of the alarming percentage increase of patients with a positive reaction.

According to a spokesperson from UK based Worldwide Fruit, the actual consumption of kiwi is now in decline for the first time since it was introduced to the UK in the 1960s. Kiwi fruit accounts for only 1.3% of all fruit bought in the UK yet it remains one of the most allergic and IgG reactive foods types. Household penetration has also dropped by 1% from 46% to 45% in 2007.

Notes for editors:

1. The study was carried out over a period from December 2002 to March 2007.

2. Case studies are available.

3. All patients took a 113 FoodSCAN food intolerance test. Patients submitted a small amount of blood which was tested for increased levels of IgG antibody against 113 foods types.

4. Subsequent elimination of foods which registered higher than normal levels of IgG antibody are proven to get better over 3 out of 4 people suffering from over 40 mild and chronic illnesses ranging from IBS to migraine.

YORKTEST is the only clinically validated food intolerance test available in the UK and the only test endorsed by Allergy UK.

YORKTEST provide food intolerance tests direct to the general public. The 113 foodScan is a simple and easy-to-do test which requires a small pinprick of blood the customer provides from home. That is sent to the laboratory and analysed against 113 food types. By identifying and measuring increased levels of antibodies, patients are advised and helped to eliminate certain foods to relieve symptoms and the service comes fully supported by nutritionists and 84-page booklet.

YORKTEST Data

The 5200 Study was produced by York University and published in February’s issue of Nutrition and Food Science. It was the biggest ever UK study into illness and food intolerance and its findings were in short:

75.8% of all patients got better from a whole range of mild and chronic illnesses.
68.2% of those felt a significant benefit within three weeks.

In addition, an IBD study by University College London Hospital has found for the first time a link between levels of IgG and IBD using the YORKTEST 113 foodScan. Findings to be published late summer 2007…..In 2004, King’s College London in their food-based migraine audit said 70% benefited from IgG based food elimination diet.

For further information:

Les Rowley, PR Manager, YORKTEST,
Tel: 01904 428 557
Email les.rowley@yorktest.com

Worldwide Foods
Tel: 01775 71700

Allergy UK
Tel: 01322 619898

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