EverlyWell Food Sensitivity Test

everlywell

If you are someone who struggles with unexplained, sometimes “chronic” symptoms you never seem to be able to pinpoint…or maybe notice a wax/wane, ebb & flow pattern thinking maybe, just maybe…you’re on the right track, eating the right foods, taking the right supplements…just to have it all stop making sense again….then I feel you. I feel like I’ve gone through it all…but completely blind. To be honest, this isn’t something I ever talk about on Instagram but behind the scenes, in real life—I’ve been on a wellness quest to figure out why my body just isn’t feeling—right. And to be even more honest and transparent, have become somewhat frustrated by doctors citing stress as the cause of everything, or wanting to jump to medications without really addressing the root cause or acknowledging that there might be an easier, more holistic fix.

Don’t get me wrong, I do know how impactful stress can be on the body and am in no way saying you shouldn’t speak up to your doctor about your own concerns or consider stress as a legitimate cause. I’ve just recently started to realize the importance of being my (your) own health advocate.

For me, that has looked like hours of scouring the internet and self-diagnosing. As much as I’m embarrassed to admit that, it’s completely true and I can’t imagine I’m the only one out there doing this! This is where EverlyWell comes in so perfectly. EverlyWell is a service that provides at-home lab testing that’s easy, affordable and insightful. They have 30+ at-home testing kits for everything from fertility to hormones to thyroid, inflammation, metabolism, food sensitivity and more. Essentially, they allow you the freedom to get real results in the comfort of your own home, no random self-diagnosing required. 🙌🏼

One of the things that has given me quite a lot of confusion lately has been diet and wondering how much what I’m eating is playing a role in my symptoms. In the past, I’ve gone dairy-free, gluten-free, avoided this, taken that…and sometimes I will notice myself feeling better or experiencing less symptoms but I never 100%, without uncertainty, know what’s right for my body—and, more importantly—what foods I’m eating might not be

I’ve considered doing a full-on elimination diet on my own, but that is quite a process, and to be frank—requires some serious dedication, tracking and time that most people just don’t have. As much as a try to track symptoms, I get completely lost and have a hard time following through. That is why I am so thrilled to partner with EverlyWell to take their at-home Food Sensitivity Test to help me through the process.

Maybe I’m in the minority here but I honestly had no idea the extent of the impact food sensitivities could have. I’ve always struggled with stomach issues and have suspected certain foods, but did you know foods can also trigger an immune response that can manifest in physical symptoms like fatigue, migraines, joint pain, headaches, trouble concentrating? 

While I do have some symptoms I’ve also suspected might be hormonal, I thought a food sensitivity test would be a great place to start because I also know the impact the right foods and diet can have on your body—even in balancing your hormones—and I want to make sure I’m creating the best possible environment for my body to thrive. Basically, as someone who experiences many of the above symptoms, I set out to start by finding out if any foods could be in play!

everlywell test

How does EverlyWell work? 

It really is so simple. You head to their site where you can choose from any of their tests, which you then purchase and have delivered to your doorstep. Your kit arrives with everything you need to perform your sample collection at home—bandaids included! It’s actually really adorable. The Food Sensitivity Test requires a blood sample, which I did have my boyfriend physically perform but they truly make it so easy and it was quick and painless. If you’re a rule/instruction follower like me—they lay it ALL out for you. And you only need 5 small drops of blood, it’s really not bad!

You then return your sample via pre-paid shipping to a certified lab and an independent board-certified physician will review your results. Once received and verified, your results will be ready online within a few days! Mine was exactly 3 days from when the lab received my sample.

everlywell food sensitivity test
food sensitivity test

How does the Food Sensitivity Test work? 

This is a blood test that tests your body’s IgG (immunoglobulin) response to 96 foods that are commonly found in our diets. Basically, certain foods can trigger a reaction from your IgG antibodies, which can then manifest in those symptoms listed above plus things like bloating, dry and itchy skin & stomach pain. Your results will tell you if you have a low, mild or high reactivity to those 96 foods. What I really love about EverlyWell’s Food Sensitivity Test is that you don’t just find out if you’re sensitive to “dairy,” it will actually pinpoint the type of dairy, i.e., cows milk, yogurt, cheddar cheese… That’s huge.

everlywell food sensitivity test

My Results…*drumroll*

ALMONDS! Almonds?? I eat almond butter every. single. day, you guys. I’ve been experiencing extreme bloating (like we’re talking food baby bloated) and when I think of my stomach issues, even itchy skin, rashes, etc—I think of dairy, gluten, wheat…the things I’ve eliminated from my diet in the past. I would never in a million years have guessed almonds or any other tree nut might be causing a reaction. But it turns out, almonds are a HIGH reactivity for me. This is the only food listed in my high reactivity category, which gives me a great place to start. The next top 5 that follow are in the mild reactivity category and include green beans, wheat, bakers yeast, cows milk and gluten, which makes sense to me and I do already generally try to avoid gluten and cows milk. Green beans—that’s a new one.

food sensivity
food sensitivity test

Results are in…what now?

To be clear, just because something is listed as having reactivity doesn’t automatically mean you will experience symptoms from consuming it, but it does mean you can consider removing it from your diet to see if your symptoms are alleviated, followed by adding it back in. It’s so fascinating to see my results list almond as a high reactivity, because it gives me a starting point for what could potentially be causing some of my symptoms. And I never would have guessed it on my own.

You can also use your results to try out potential substitutions or identify hidden sources like supplements, sauces, etc. For me, I generally avoid cows milk but you know what my usual substitution is? Almond milk. Moving forward, I can try alternatives like coconut milk to see if this might make a difference. I’m also looking forward to seeing just which symptoms might be coming from my almond consumption, so I can have a clearer picture.

It’s been pretty mind-blowing to me how many women, men, people I’ve had conversations with who experience so many of the symptoms we’ve talked about above. Or just have a general lack of knowledge or answers about their health issues. I think doing a test like this (or any of EverlyWell’s tests) is such an amazing opportunity for self-awareness and care. 

If you have lingering symptoms you can’t explain and suspect food sensitivity is at play—I highly recommend trying out this test as a starting point, so you’re able to more easily pinpoint what may be causing a reaction. I am thrilled to have this knowledge and do plan to try more of their at-home tests.

Promo Code

EverlyWell has so generously provided a coupon code for any of you to use at checkout. You can use code “GOLD” for 15% off.

If you’ve done this test, plan to do this test, or have figured out a food sensitivity on your own—I would LOVE to hear! Was it surprising? Do you suspect you might have a food sensitivity? Let me know if you have any questions at all and I’m more than happy to answer.

As always, thank you so much for reading! I know this was a long one!

x Tyler

*This post is brought to you in collaboration with EverlyWell. All thoughts and opinions remain my own*

Bachelorette Weekend in Napa and San Francisco

My dress:  Forever 21 . My sisters dress:  SheIn . My shoes:  Nordstrom . 

My dress: Forever 21. My sisters dress: SheIn. My shoes: Nordstrom

Maid of Honor duty is no joke. I am very happy to be my sister's MOH and planning her bachelorette party was a lot of fun, but also incredibly stressful and I'm sure a lot of you who have been there (or are currently there!) can relate. From finding venues to coordinating schedules and fine-tuning itineraries, there's a lot that goes into creating an unforgettable experience for everyone involved. I can't even begin to imagine the stress that goes into planning the actual wedding!

When I first started planning, we had toyed with the idea of taking a trip somewhere—Vegas, San Diego, etc.—but since she is having a destination wedding in Mexico, we decided to keep it local to San Francisco with a day trip to Napa included and it ended up being the perfect bachelorette weekend. 

Honestly, a lot of my initial stress came from figuring out the best way to get to Napa Valley from San Francisco, which wineries we'd go to, how many to choose, where to go for lunch...and so on. I ended up coming across Beau Wine Tours and reached out to them and am so, so happy I did. Honestly, they took so much of my planning stress off the table and pretty much took care of every little detail, allowing me to actually enjoy my time in Napa Valley with my sister. 

I knew we had to get a group of 11 girls to Napa from San Francisco and that a private tour would feel a little more special, so upon recommendation, I booked a 12-passenger Executive Van with Beau Wine Tours. I worked with Rose and Lauren who both were so helpful in providing tips and recommendations for the best wineries for our group. They helped with every little detail. I mentioned I wanted to keep it as economical as possible since all the girls were already spending money to fly to Mexico for the wedding. They were very receptive to that and were able to find us some amazing wineries that fit our needs without astronomical tasting fees.

After working with Beau Wine Tours to plan our day-trip to Napa, I booked our hotel in San Francisco at Hotel Union Square which was very convenient. Friday night before our wine tour, we had dinner at Waterfront on the Embarcadero before drinks and dancing at another bar. 

Saturday morning, Beau picked us up at our hotel to take us to Napa Valley and back, which was the 8-hour day we planned. Beau had emailed me the day before our tour to let me know our driver was James, who then called me to make sure we had our itinerary squared away. He was wonderful and made sure we knew everywhere we needed to be and when we had to leave each winery. Basically, every detail was thought out for us.

We ended up going to three wineries and had a pre-planned lunch that James picked up for us. Below is a breakdown of our 8-hour itinerary for your reference. The great thing is that Beau Wine Tours provided us with timing estimates, taking all the guesswork out of the equation. 

Itinerary

Pick Up: 9:00 am at SF hotel. We stayed in the Penthouse at Hotel Union Square and it was perfect!

Stop: Domaine Chandon Napa, CA

10:00 am: Pre-scheduled Pickup for deli lunch at Yountville Deli. Beau to deliver lunch to White Hall Lane while girls are at Domaine Chandon

Stop: 12:00 pm lunch and tasting at White Hall Lane, St. Helena, CA

Stop: V. Sattui Winery St. Helena, CA

Drop Off: 5:00 pm at SF Hotel

Our first stop was Domaine Chandon and, since it's on the expensive side, Beau Wine Tours suggested purchasing a few bottles instead of scheduling a tasting. We ended up buying two bottles of rosé and then headed outside to the patio to have our own little tasting. Beau provided an ice bucket and plastic champagne flutes on the van, so we had already begun drinking and starting our first tasting day with champagne (sparkling wine) was perfect. 

The grounds at Domaine Chandon were stunning and it's such a wonderful place to relax and take in the scenery. You can grab your glass and walk around with it and I loved starting somewhere so breathtaking. It was also quite nice not to have the structure of an official tasting right off the bat. All the girls wanted a mini photo session with this vine wall as the perfect backdrop and we had plenty of time to ourselves to do that. 

I think we could have stayed at Domaine Chandon all day, but James picked us up and we headed to our next tasting appointment, which was scheduled for noon. James made sure to let us know exactly what time we'd need to leave in order to make it to the next winery, which was beyond helpful. We were able to step off the tour bus with every girl knowing the plan. 

Our next stop was Whitehall Lane Winery in St. Helena. Beau recommended I pre-order sandwiches from Yountville Deli, which James picked up for us while we were tasting at Domaine Chandon. When we arrived at Whitehall Lane we had a picnic lunch at this farm table and our sandwiches were all laid out and waiting for us. I was genuinely blown away by this. I don't know why I wasn't expecting that, but it was so, so appreciated and was the perfect touch to make the day feel special. We had our tasting with Whitehall Lane as we ate lunch and it was incredibly relaxing, serene and intimate.

Honestly, Whitehall Lane was by far my favorite winery for the atmosphere. It was the prettiest setting and we had this whole backyard to ourselves, which made the day feel a bit more special and unique. We walked through their cellar, picked our own grape (yes, one) to taste, laughed like crazy and all-in-all had a really great time. The staff was incredibly accommodating and didn't mind when we got up to take 500 photos either. This is very important for a bachelorette party!

Our last stop of the day was at V. Sattui, which was really cool and casual and one of the wineries on the lower end of price. We didn't make an appointment at this one, which was perfect because not everyone even ended up wanting to taste. Those who did want to taste paid the $15 tasting fee for a six glass tasting, which was very reasonable and I loved the wine.

There were plenty of tables outside to relax on where a bunch of girls snacked on post-lunch treats we picked up from DEAN & DELUCA, which I'm obsessed with and is right across from V. Sattui. You may have seen my snap about the bacon spread. Oh my god, the bacon spread. Out of all the wineries, V. Sattui definitely has the most lively, young feel.

Overall, it was truly the perfect Napa bachelorette party experience. My sister thoroughly enjoyed the day, we all experienced Napa Valley and everyone was so impressed with our itinerary and the attention to detail. Beau Wine Tours took care of everything and I was able to enjoy the day without having to think about every little scheduling detail. If you're planning a trip to the Napa Valley, I highly recommend scheduling a tour with Beau Wine Tours to have someone help plan your special day—at least once! It really makes all the difference. 

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you find this helpful in planning your own trip!

x Tyler

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*I received a discount from Beau Wine Tours in exchange for this post. All thoughts and opinions remain my own.