Elimination Diet

Elimination Diet

A majority of people have the advantage of being able to eat anything. The foods they do not eat are usually kept off their meal plan by choice, or because they have never tasted that particular dish, or do not like the way it tastes. This can go on throughout their life until either their body begins to reject particular foods or they develop an illness that requires them to remove certain foods from their diet.

The best way to describe an elimination diet would be the removal of a particular food or foods from one’s meal plan in an effort to establish the cause of a particular allergy or intolerance. The selected food or foods are removed from the meal plan for a fixed period of time ranging from two weeks to months giving the body time to reveal if any of the selected foods is the cause of discomfort. Many times he elimination diet is started because of the diagnosis of a condition such as Eosinophilic Esophagitis.

There are certain foods that have been identified as a common part of any elimination diet as they are known to cause allergies in many people. These are mostly dairy products, eggs and products that have eggs in them, products with gluten, processed foods, nuts and citrus fruits. The process of the elimination diet is that the suspected offending food or foods are removed from the diet for a prescribed period of time with watchful eye on if the symptoms of the allergy subside or disappear completely. The foods are then re-introduced to the meal plan one by one to see if the symptoms will flare up again. It is essentially a trial and error method used to establish if the cause of the problem is a particular food.

When discussing the topic of elimination diet, there are two terms that are commonly used interchangeably but have different meanings. The terms are food allergy and food intolerance. The food allergy triggers the body’s immune system in reaction mostly to food proteins as is a biological reaction. Food intolerance on the other hand is a reaction in the gastrointestinal system and is caused by difficulty in digesting a particular food.

The elimination diet can be quite tedious. Firstly, one is advised to visit a doctor or a professional nutritionist before starting the elimination diet. This is because one must ensure that they continue to eat a balanced diet that does not contain any foods that may cause a reaction. Also, one must be very careful to ensure that they do not consume other foods that may be related to the offending foods and cause a similar reaction. The patient is required to keep track of everything they eat, how they feel and any medicines they may take. This will assist in keeping track of any inconsistencies and in the identification of if a particular food is the actually issue.

An elimination diet takes on the face of a monster when the foods that have to be removed from ones diet are foods that one enjoys. Take for example the individual who enjoys a full breakfast with tea or coffee, cereal (with milk), eggs having to start the day with a substitute such as soy milk, a rice cereal and no eggs will not start off the day in the best of moods. Fortunately, they will only have to stay on the diet for a short period of time if they discover that those foods aren’t one of their food allergies.

There is a lot of information available about elimination diets and a wide variety of different types of exclusion diets. There are many nutritionists who offer their services to those who are in need of such diets. Some of them have websites which explain how these diets work and the circumstances that lead one to having to take up the elimination diet as well as what is required of them. These nutritionists seek to answer the most frequently asked questions by those who have been advised to take up the diet and they offer personalized services too.

Even though one can gather a lot of information off the internet, it is always best to get the advice of a doctor before trying any diet. Self diagnosis and prescription may lead to further discomfort and force you to visit the doctor anyway as you may not eliminate from your diet all the foods that may be causing you irritation, or you may be unaware of the different forms in which a particular food can be produced in.

For more detailed information check out the list of topics about eosinophilic esophagitis.

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