BusinessHealth

Allergy Testing As A Potential Revenue Stream For Your Gym

I wanted to share why we started offering allergy testing at our facility last year and why this could be a great way to add an extra revenue stream into your gym while adding more value to your members.

MY STORY

Before going on a diet last year I wanted to see if there were certain foods I may be allergic or intolerant to. I was already suspicious of foods that upset my stomach but I wanted confirmation. After much research on the various types, I found a company online that offered allergy testing at an affordable price. When I got the results back, I was encouraged to start an elimination diet. So for the next 6 months, I decided to remove dairy, gluten, rice, and pasta.

I couldn’t be happier with the results! Not only do I feel better but in the process I ended up losing 25lbs!! Through the allergy test, I also learned that my calcium levels were very low. I’m now taking a calcium supplement. In a few months, I plan to take another test to reassess my levels.

AFFILIATE PROGRAMS

There are multiple ways to test allergies. Most common are skin and blood. Offering blood or skin testing in-house was going to require a huge learning curve and potential liability issues that I didn’t want to hassle with. I had such great benefits with the intolerance test that I reached out to the company to see if we could offer this service to our members using their testing program. We were officially approved as a part of their affiliate program last year.

Affiliate programs make their money by offering their “affiliates” a discount on their current rates. You make your money by charging the normal rate and profiting the difference.

The test we use chose identifies 600 food and non-food allergies as well as nutritional deficiencies that you may have. Included in the food intolerance test we also offer a 30-minute phone or in-person consult to go over the results.

SOFT ROLLOUT

As a general good of thumb for any program or service you are looking to offer, I recommend you personally try it first. If you’ve never done a food intolerance test I highly recommend it whether you decide to sell this as a service or not. From there I would handpick a few ideal clients for your gym and ask them if they would be interested in trying this service as a possible new offering at your gym. Give them your discount rate to make it even easier for them to do it. The goal is to get their honest feedback of the test results. In the meantime, you want to figure out how you are going to create systems and processes that you will use to roll this out to the masses. without looking unorganized or lacking the answers they need to make an informed decision.

There are so many types of test out there. Each has its pros and cons based on the following:

1.Invasiveness

Today, prick intradermal testing is most common. Blood testing is the most invasive. The older version of blood testing uses Radioallergosorbent or “RAST” for short which involves measuring specific allergic antibodies from a blood sample. Newer versions of blood testing for allergies involves the use of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA). Typically, the more invasive the test the more they cost. The company we use networks with local third-party laboratores to handle and process the blood.

2. Price

The cost range anywhere from $60-$300 depending on the type of test and location in which you live. I found doing the test online are much more affordable than the test at my doctor’s office. Once the test is ordered a confirmation email and proof of purchase is sent via email that you present to your local lab.

3. Turnaround

Getting the results back in a timely manner is very important. In our case, we asked the client to prepay the cost of the test so it didn’t come out of our pocket. We also understood that by doing it this way we didn’t want to make the client waitit too long to get their results back. Each company has their own timeline for processing.

4. Offerings

The variations of allergy test range from basic prick testing to genetic predispositions to certain allergies. We found a company that tested food intolerances, allergies, metal toxicities, and nutritional deficiencies. This provided us with a more well-round analysis that we could use to talk about lifestyle choices with our clients.

ALLERGY TEST FLYER (FREE DOWNLOAD)

Conclusion

It is my belief as food process become more complex more and more poeple are going to suffer food intolerances to some degree. As health and fitness professionals we should make every effort to help our clients through this confusing growth and popularity of manufactured foods. As the population expands, so do the offerings that can make eating a little safer and a lot more delicious. To us, food allergy testing is a no brainer.

If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to me at mario@marioashley.com

References

https://acaai.org/allergies/allergy-treatment/allergy-testing

https://www.choosingwisely.org/patient-resources/allergy-test

https://www.verywellhealth.com/allergy-testing-82636

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