Food can be very healing but they can also be destructive toward your health. If you have an autoimmune disease you may be sensitive to one of these common food intolerances. In order for your body to heal you need to remove them from your diet.
There is an epidemic of autoimmune diseases. With an estimation of 50 million Americans according to the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association. Having an autoimmune disease increases your risk of having a food sensitivity.
Allergy vs. Intolerance
A food allergy is a severe reaction to food, it can cause anaphylactic shock and can be life-threatening. A food intolerance causes fewer reactions such as a headache, gas, or acne. It’s so minor that most people don’t even realize they are having a reaction to food. But when you’re trying to heal from an autoimmune disease it’s extremely important to remove the offending food item.
In this post, I’m only talking about food intolerances also known as sensitivities. You need to start paying attention to your body as to which foods are causing certain reactions. Then remove them from your diet.
Developed countries have successfully reduced infectious diseases but have increased in autoimmune diseases. This is due to our lifestyle, particularly the types of food we eat. Including high sugar, processed foods, additives, and grains – especially gluten.
Genetic factors can influence the development of an autoimmune disease like multiple sclerosis. But its environmental factors that trigger it. Food is the most common.
→ Runny nose
→ Gut pains
→ Skin issues
As far back as I can remember I’ve always had gut pains after eating eggs. I didn’t really like eating them but I didn’t go out of my way from avoiding them either. Many years later I finally got smart and removed eggs from my diet.
Several years ago I decided to try an elimination diet to see if I had any other food sensitivities. Sure enough! I was sensitive to tomatoes and chipotle. Chipotle was no big deal but having a sensitivity to tomatoes was devastating. I loved eating sauces that included tomatoes.
I decided to remove all nightshades from my diet. I wanted to help my body heal as much as possible since the nervous system is one of the slowest to heal. It critical for you to find which foods your body is sensitive to and remove them.
To learn more about elimination diets read: How to Start an Elimination Diet
Gluten is a protein found in barley, rye, and wheat. It can lead to damage in the small intestines and hurt the body’s ability to absorb key nutrients. Gluten is the glue that holds everything together.
Food manufacturers hide gluten in just about every processed food. It’s also in body care products it’s even in the glue on the back of an envelope. Common foods containing gluten are:
→ Baked goods
Millions of people have a dairy intolerance. You may even know someone who is “lactose intolerant.” Lactose intolerance happens when the body is unable to digest a type of sugar found in dairy.
Dairy intolerance may cause digestive issues and inflammation. Including bloating, gas, acne, and joint pain. When trying to heal from an autoimmune disease it’s best to avoid all dairy products.
Eggs are a good source of protein, they are good alone and used in many recipes. They’re also one of the most common food allergens and sensitivities. Proteins in the egg are what’s causing the problem.
Some people are only sensitive to the egg white or only the egg yolk. You can test to see if it’s the yolk or the whites causing the problem. I personally never tried it, I eliminated the entire egg or any product that contains egg.
Peanuts and soy are a legume and are on the top of food intolerances. Peanut allergens and sensitivities have been on the rise in the past decade. It may be due to the fact that they contain a high amount of pesticides which cause long-term health effects.
Soybeans are a product that has been genetically engineered (GMO). This helps it to withstand a heavy dose of pesticides. It can cause cancer, liver dysfunction, and is very toxic to the nervous system. Soy also contains isoflavones which mimic the hormone estrogen. For women, it can cause breast cancer and for men, it can cause decreased sperm count.
Shellfish is another common food where people have an intolerance. It’s important to learn the different names of shellfish. A person may be sensitive to one kind of shellfish and not another. It may be due to the way it’s processed, always read labels.
Nuts and Seeds
If you have an autoimmune disease it’s more than likely you’re suffering from a leaky gut. A leaky gut happens when the tight pores in the gut separate. This allows toxins to pass wreaking havoc throughout the body.
Nuts and seeds can aggravate a leaky gut. They can further break down the intestinal wall irritating the digestive system. Having a leaky gut increases the risk of food sensitivities and nuts and seeds are a high risk.
Meat from any animal such as beef, lamb, or pork can cause a food reaction. This could be due to the way the farmers raise the animals which include grains and soy. Unlike naturally raised animals which graze on grass.
Conventional meats are also given antibiotics and growth hormones. The animals are in confined areas making them sicker and stressed. If you’re having a reaction try switching to grassed fed animals which are healthier.
Chronic inflammation leads to autoimmune disease which predisposed by what you eat. Carefully read all food labels so you can avoid the food you’re sensitive to. Try an elimination diet and remove any foods your body has a reaction to. This will help heal your leaky gut and promote healing.