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How To Do An Exclusion Diet And Why
Exclusion Diet, Food intolerances and sensitivities are ubiquitous. It remains estimated that between 2 and 20% of people worldwide may suffer from food intolerance. Exclusion diets are the gold standard for identifying food intolerances, sensitivities, and allergies through diet. They eliminate certain foods that are known to cause uncomfortable symptoms and reintroduce them at a later time while they assess symptoms.
Allergists and registered dietitians have been using exclusion diets for decades to help people weed out foods that are not well tolerated.
What Is An Exclusion Diet?
An elimination diet includes removing foods from your diet you suspect your body may not tolerate well. Foods remain reintroduced, one at a time, while looking for symptoms that show a reaction. It only lasts 5-6 weeks and remains used to help people with a sensitive gut, food intolerance, or food allergy identify which foods contribute to their symptoms. An elimination diet can relieve symptoms like bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, and nausea.
Once you’ve successfully identified a food that your body can’t tolerate well, you can eliminate it from your diet to prevent uncomfortable symptoms in the future.
There remain many types of elimination diets, which involve eating or eliminating certain foods.
If you have a known or supposed food allergy, you should only try an elimination diet under the supervision of a medical professional. Reintroducing a food allergen can trigger a dangerous condition called anaphylaxis.
Suppose you suspect a food allergy. Check with your doctor before starting a removal diet. Indications of an allergy include rashes, hives, swelling, and trouble breathing.
An elimination diet remains a short-term diet that helps identify foods that your body cannot tolerate well and eliminates them from your diet.
How Does It Work?
An elimination diet remains divided into two phases: elimination and reintroduction. The elimination phase involves eliminating the foods you suspect are triggering your symptoms for a short period, usually 2 to 3 weeks. Eliminate foods you think your body can’t tolerate and foods that remain known to cause uncomfortable symptoms.
These foods comprise nuts, corn, soy, dairy, citrus fruits, nightshade vegetables, wheat, gluten-containing, pork, eggs, and shellfish.
During this phase, you can control if your symptoms are due to food or something else. However, if your symptoms persist after eliminating food for 2 to 3 weeks, it’s best to tell your doctor.
The Reintroduction Phase
The next phase remains the reintroduction phase, in which you gradually reintroduce the eliminated foods into your diet. Again, each food group should stay introduced individually over 2-3 days while looking for symptoms. Some symptoms to watch out for include:
- Rashes and skin changes.
- joint pain
- Headaches or migraines
- Difficulty to sleep
- changes in breathing
- Stomach pain or cramps
- Changes in bowel habits
If you don’t experience symptoms during the period when you reintroduce a food group, you can assume it’s okay to eat and move on to the next food group. However, if you are experiencing adverse symptoms like those listed above, you have successfully identified a trigger food and should eliminate it from your diet.
The entire process, including removal, takes approximately 5-6 weeks.
If you plan to cut out many food groups, seek the advice of your doctor or dietitian. Eliminating too many food groups can cause a nutritional deficiency.
An elimination diet works by eliminating foods that you think are causing discomfort. He then reintroduces them individually to check for symptoms.
What Can Not Remain Eaten On An Elimination Diet?
The best elimination diets are the most restrictive. The more foods you eliminate during the elimination phase, the more likely you will discover which foods trigger uncomfortable symptoms.
Foods that remain commonly eliminated during the exclusion phase include:
Citrus fruits: Evade citrus fruits, such as orange and grapefruit.
Nightshade vegetables: Avoid nightshades, including tomatoes, bell peppers, eggplant, white potatoes, l