Lifestyle or ‘wellness’, tests are those that are not diagnostic tests. These tests are not intended to diagnose or predict a specific disease or medical condition. Examples of Lifestyle tests include a test to detect the best diet for a genotype, a test to assess risk for wrinkles and/or freckles, a test to identify the best fitness plan for metabolism, a genetic test to determine aptitude for learning languages, a metabolic test to determine snacking profile, or a test to identity food metabolism traits.
The Department of Health does not object to the use of such tests by the public when offered by a laboratory holding a New York State clinical laboratory permit. Please be aware that tests designated by the Department as “Lifestyle” will not be reviewed for analytic or clinical validity. The laboratory permitting process includes an assessment of the laboratory to ensure that it is operated in accordance with the New York State law, regulation and clinical laboratory standards of practice. Such requirements include procedures for adequate quality control of testing.
The public should be aware that a “Lifestyle” test may not have been proven to be clinically valid. If you feel unwell, you are encouraged to seek medical advice from a licensed healthcare provider. Note that state regulations require that all laboratory testing, including “Lifestyle” tests, require an order from a authorized individual, such as a licensed physician.
Below please find links to information from nationally recognized associations regarding opinions on certain tests where clinical validity has not been well established.
IgG Food Panel Testing
- American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology: The myth of IgG food panel testing
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Are Food Sensitivity Tests Accurate?
- National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases: Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Food Allergy in the United States
Gut Microbiome Testing
- National Library of Medicine: Microbiome 101 article 2019
- Conclusion: “There is still a long way to go before microbiome-based diagnostics become a routine part of clinical care.”
- Digestive Diseases and Sciences: Clinician Guide to Microbiome Testing 2018
- The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology: Treating the individual with diet: is gut microbiome testing the answer?
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention MMWR Report 2014: Use of Unvalidated Mycotoxin Tests for the Clinical Diagnosis of Illness