Elimination Diet/Anti-inflammatory Diet

There is growing evidence that Elimination/Anti-inflammatory diets can be helpful in a wide varity of chronic medical conditions including:

  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • ADHD
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Lupus
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Chronic Pain
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Memory problems
  • Allergies
  • Asperger’s
  • Bad Breath
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • High cholesterol
  • Gout
  • Interstitial Cystitis
  • Celiac Disease
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Eczema
  • Fungal Infections
  • Autoimmune Diseases

What is an Elimination Diet?

The goal of an elimination/anti-inflammatory diet is to remove substances from your and/or your child’s diet that may potentially be causing or making their symptoms worse.

There are a lot of different foods that may be making your symptoms worse.  Common culprits include

  • Sugars (both high fructose corn syrup, and cane sugars)
  • Dyes
  • Caffeine
  • Dairy
  • Certain meats
  • Certain grains
  • Phosphates
  • Sulfates
  • Processed foods
  • Alcohol
  • Smoke

However, instead of trying to figure out what foods you can’t eat, we will focus on those that are unlikely to cause a negative reaction.

When eating an elimination diet, it is important that you (or your child) gets a balanced meal and proper nutrition.  At every meal, you (or your child) need protein, fruits and vegetables.  Make  it your goal to eat 10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.  Adding in gluten free grains can be a healthy source of extra calories.  For children and people who are under weight, it is important to monitor their weight to make sure they are not losing weight.


  • Nuts
  • Nut butters
  • Beans
  • Seeds
  • Fish
  • Lamb
  • Wild game
  • Organic turkey

Fruits:  One to two servings at every meal (serving size is the size of a closed fist). 

Vegetables:  One to two servings at every meal (serving size is the size of a closed fist)

Gluten Free Grains:

  • Whole grain rice
  • Quinoa
  • Do Not - eat processed “gluten free foods” even if it says “natural” on the label.

Water:  Water should be the only thing you drink, and drink plenty of water!

Normal Regimen

An average elimination diet will have you strictly follow the diet for the first 3 weeks.  If there is improvement, you can slowly add one type of food back into your diet at a time.  See which particular foods are making the symptoms worse.  If your symptoms become worse again, then back off on those foods.  Avoiding certain foods could last a life time.

Give it a try, you will be happy with the results!

Stay Healthy,

Dr. Jeff M.D.

Follow me on Twitter @DoctorJeffMD

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