Reserve limited release SIBO & Candida and Leaky gut recovery system • Doctor and naturopath approved

M

Treatment

Elimination diet

FixSIBO OP Dr John Freeman profile photo

Elimination diet

Medically reviewed by:
Dr John Freeman

Why and how?

Food intolerances and sensitivities are relatively widespread among the general population. In reality, it is believed that between 2–20% of the world’s population may be affected by food intolerance or allergy.

For food intolerances, sensitivities, and allergies, elimination diets are the gold standard for detecting these conditions through diet.

Foods that induce uncomfortable symptoms are removed from the diet and then slowly introduced back into the diet while monitoring and recording symptoms.

Allergists and registered dietitians have used elimination diets for decades to assist clients in eliminating foods that are not well accepted.

What Is an elimination diet and how does it work?

When you follow an elimination diet, you exclude things from your diet that you anticipate your body will not accept well. The foods are then reintroduced one at a time to identify any symptoms that indicate a reaction.

It only lasts 5-6 weeks and is designed to assist patients suffering from the sensitive gut, food intolerance, or food allergy symptoms in identifying which foods are causing their symptoms to worsen.

In this approach, symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, and nausea may be alleviated by following an elimination diet.

You can eliminate a food from your diet if you have successfully discovered a food that your body does not tolerate well to avoid experiencing any uncomfortable symptoms.

There are many different types of elimination diets, including consuming or avoiding specific categories of foods.

Those who have a known or suspected food allergy, on the other hand, should only attempt an elimination diet under the direction of a qualified medical expert. The reintroduction of a food allergy can cause a life-threatening condition known as anaphylaxis.

If you feel you may have a food allergy, consult your doctor before beginning an elimination diet to rule out other possibilities. Rashes, hives, swelling, and difficulty breathing are some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction.

How does the elimination diet work?

The process is separated into two phases in an elimination diet: elimination and reintroduction of foods and ingredients.

The elimination phase

In the elimination phase, you will refrain from consuming foods that you believe are causing your symptoms for a brief amount of time, often 2–3 weeks.

Eliminate foods that you believe your body is unable to accept and those well-known for generating unpleasant symptoms in certain people.

Nuts, corn, soy, dairy products, citrus fruits, nightshade vegetables, wheat, gluten-containing foods, pork, eggs, and shellfish are a few things on this list.

During this phase, you will be able to identify whether your symptoms are caused by foods or by something else entirely. If your symptoms persist after removing the foods from your diet for 2–3 weeks, it is best to consult with your physician.

The reintroduction phase

The reintroduction phase follows, during which you gradually reintroduce foods that were previously removed from your diet.

Each food category should be introduced one at a time, over 2–3 days while keeping an eye out for symptoms. Some of the signs and symptoms to look out for are as follows:

      • Rashes and skin changes are expected
      • Joint discomfort is a common occurrence
      • Headaches or migraines are a common occurrence
      • Fatigue
      • Sleeping problems are a common occurrence
      • Changes in breathing patterns
      • Bloating
      • Constipation or cramping in the stomach
      • Alterations in bowel habits

It is reasonable to presume that you are in good health throughout the period when you reintroduce a food group and to go to the next food group if you do not experience any symptoms.

If, on the other hand, you suffer unpleasant symptoms such as those listed above, you have successfully identified a trigger meal and should eliminate it from your diet immediately.

The entire process, including elimination, will take approximately 5-6 weeks to complete.

If you intend to eliminate many food groups, consult with your doctor or a dietician first. Excluding an excessive number of food, groups may result in a nutritional deficiency.

Food to avoid while on an elimination diet

The most effective elimination diets are those that are the most restrictive.

More items removed during the elimination phase increase the likelihood that you will discover which foods cause uncomfortable symptoms during your elimination phase.

Foods that are frequently avoided during the elimination phase include the following:

      • Citrus fruits: Avoid citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits since they contain high levels of vitamin C.
      • Even though tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, white potatoes, cayenne pepper, and paprika are all nightshade foods, they should be avoided.
      • Nuts and seeds: Completely eliminate all nuts and seeds from your diet.
      • Eliminate all legumes, including beans, lentils, peas, and soy-based products, from your diet completely.
      • Avoid starchy foods such as wheat, barley, corn, spelt, rye, oats, and bread. Also, avoid any other gluten-containing foods if at all possible.
      • Meat and fish: Avoid processed meats, cold cuts, beef, chicken, pork, eggs, and shellfish, as well as cured meats and cured fish.
      • Milk, cheese, yogurt, and ice cream are all examples of dairy products that should be avoided at all costs.
      • Fats: Stay away from butter, margarine, hydrogenated oils, mayonnaise, and spreads, among other things.
      • Avoid alcoholic beverages, caffeinated beverages such as coffee, black tea, soda, and other forms of caffeine.
      • Spices and condiments: Sauces, relish, and mustard should be avoided.
      • Avoid sugar (both white and brown), honey, maple syrup, corn syrup and high-fructose corn syrup, agave nectar, pastries, and chocolate (all of which contain high amounts of sugar).

If you suspect that any other foods not on this list are causing you discomfort, it is highly recommended that you eliminate them.

What can you eat while following an elimination diet plan?

The most effective elimination diets are those that are the most restrictive.

More items removed during the elimination phase increase the likelihood that you will discover which foods cause uncomfortable symptoms during your elimination phase.

Foods that are frequently avoided during the elimination phase include the following:

      • Citrus fruits: Avoid citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits since they contain high levels of vitamin C.
      • Even though tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, white potatoes, cayenne pepper, and paprika are all nightshade foods, they should be avoided.
      • Nuts and seeds: Completely eliminate all nuts and seeds from your diet.
      • Eliminate all legumes, including beans, lentils, peas, and soy-based products, from your diet completely.
      • Avoid starchy foods such as wheat, barley, corn, spelt, rye, oats, and bread. Also, avoid any other gluten-containing foods if at all possible.
      • Meat and fish: Avoid processed meats, cold cuts, beef, chicken, pork, eggs, and shellfish, as well as cured meats and cured fish.
      • Milk, cheese, yogurt, and ice cream are all examples of dairy products that should be avoided at all costs.
      • Fats: Stay away from butter, margarine, hydrogenated oils, mayonnaise, and spreads, among other things.
      • Avoid alcoholic beverages, caffeinated beverages such as coffee, black tea, soda, and other forms of caffeine.
      • Spices and condiments: Sauces, relish, and mustard should be avoided.
      • Avoid sugar (both white and brown), honey, maple syrup, corn syrup and high-fructose corn syrup, agave nectar, pastries, and chocolate (all of which contain high amounts of sugar).

If you suspect that any other foods not on this list are causing you discomfort, it is highly recommended that you eliminate them.

Risk of an elimination diet

Although elimination diets are a terrific approach to figuring out which foods are causing you trouble, some risks are associated.

Elimination diets, for starters, should only be followed for a short amount of time, ideally between four and eight weeks.

It is not recommended to follow an elimination diet for an extended period because it may result in nutrient deficiencies resulting from eliminating certain food groups.

Additionally, minors and persons with known or suspected allergies should only participate in an elimination diet under the guidance of a physician or other qualified health professional.

Summary

Elimination diets can assist you in determining which meals your body is unable to tolerate adequately.

If you are having symptoms that you believe may be related to your diet, an elimination diet may be able to assist you in identifying the foods that are causing them.

Nevertheless, elimination diets are not suitable for everyone. Unless under the supervision of a doctor or dietician, children should not attempt an elimination diet.

Similarly, persons who have known or suspected allergies should only undergo an elimination diet under the direction of a medical professional.

In conclusion, it is vital to remember that elimination diets should only be followed briefly because prolonged limitations may result in nutritional deficits.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This