Health and Wellness News

Best Diets for Food Allergies

Healthy woman eating the salad

May is food allergy month, and we’re here to discuss some of the most popular diets and why they may or may not be best for those with food intolerances.  You might try a food sensitive diet like those listed below if you experience any of the following signs of food intolerance regularly:

  • Digestive issues (nausea, diarrhea, constipation, flatulence)
  • Abdominal pain or bloating
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Skin problems
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Emotional changes (depression, anxiety)

(Some of the symptoms could indicate a more serious illness, so whenever you are concerned about a symptom, visit your healthcare provider right away.)

In general, a diet that eliminates possible triggers is best for those with food allergies.  Here are some of the more popular options:

1. Gluten-Free

Even if you don’t have a diagnosed gluten intolerance like Celiac’s Disease, eliminating gluten from your diet can be one way to reduce some unpleasant symptoms.  Eating a gluten-free diet means no wheat, rye, barley, or triticale.

This might seem limiting because, admittedly, gluten is the most common ingredient in processed grains; however, on a gluten-free diet, you can still eat corn, rice, quinoa, and other hearty grains.

With the growing popularity of this diet, you can find nearly all your favorite prepared foods like bread or pizza, in a gluten-free variety at the grocery store.

2. Paleo

A paleo diet’s aim is to reduce the processed, high sodium, high fat, and nutritionally-weak meals we tend to eat with meals that resemble what the early hunter-gatherers would have eaten.  What you can eat is lean proteins, fruits, veggies, and healthy fats; what you’ll avoid is dairy, legumes, highly processed foods, and refined sugar/sweetener.

While the paleo diet might seem a little daunting in the age of ready-made meals and takeout, you can still enjoy delicious meals like kabobs, salads, meat/veggie soups, and so much more.  Think steak or salmon and asparagus with a side salad – that doesn’t sound too limiting, does it?

3. Whole30

Whole30 is setup to self-diagnose your own food intolerances.  It is a pretty strict diet eliminating common food irritants for 30 days; at the end of the 30 days, you slowly reintroduce foods back into your diet and see how your body reacts.  This allows you to see potential food sensitivities.

Along with the limitations of the paleo diet, a Whole30 diet eliminates any added sugar and discourages recreating “Whole30 friendly” baked goods.  (That means no trying to create breads or cookies using Whole30-compliant ingredients.)

Despite restrictions, there is a whole movement of Whole30-ers out there, and a bank of Whole30-friendly recipes to consider.  For example, try these delicious chicken lettuce wraps or cabbage rolls!

There are a variety of ways to figure out how your body reacts to various foods, and these are just three ways to test your own intolerances.  Once you learn what your body does or doesn’t like, you can reduce consumption of the offenders.

If you have digestive or other symptoms that concern you, whether they seem related to what you eat or not, we recommend visiting a healthcare provider.  At Partners Urgent Care, we’re open late and on weekends so you can get back to better.