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Elimination Diet

Elimination Diet

Identify food allergies by eliminating suspect foods.

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If you suspect you may have a food allergy, The Elimination Diet can help you identify the suspected food or ingredient. The Elimination Diet involves taking out certain foods, ingredients or additives from your diet for a short period of time. During this lapse of time, you'll observe how you feel and whether or not you experience food-related symptoms. When the symptoms abate, you can safely reason that your food sensitivity, allergy or intolerance is due to the eliminated food.

The Elimination Diet may also be referred to as the Exclusion Diet.

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  • Can help identify the cause of a food allergy or sensitivity
  • Encourages careful food label reading
  • Must read food labels very carefully
  • Must completely eliminate suspected food or ingredient in order to safely identify suspecting food
  • May take many trial and error tests in order to pinpoint the food culprit
  • Lab work is commonly necessary
  • For chemical or additive allergies, diet must be carefully designed and followed

The Elimination Diet is typically followed by someone who experiences indigestion, gas, bloating, a rash or allergic reaction following eating. The most common food culprits are peanuts, wheat, eggs, shellfish, soy, and milk, but a food intolerance or allergy can result from any ingredient or additive.

One food is eliminated from the diet at a time for two to four weeks. An SPT skin prick test and RAST sensitive test are used to diagnose whether or not the allergy is due to one of the most common offenders; but when it comes to an allergy due to a food chemical or additive, there is currently no diagnostic test to determine a positive or negative result.

Once the symptoms have disappeared, a person can then follow the Challenge Test, the purpose of which is to introduce the suspected allergy-provoking food back into the diet and wait for a recurrence of symptoms. Oftentimes, this is done in a medically-controlled setting.

While on the Elimination Diet, food labels must be carefully read and special attention must also be made when dining out.

It is important that while you are on the Elimination Diet that you still consume the appropriate amount of nutrients and calories. It may be necessary to design a plan with a medical doctor or registered dietitian to ensure that you are consuming a balanced diet.


Not applicable.


The Elimination Diet is a useful diagnostic experiment to determine the exact cause of a food allergy, intolerance or insensitivity. But since looking for a single culprit is akin to searching for a needle in a haystack, a diet outlined by a medical professional may be necessary.

If you suspect you have a food allergy, speak with your medical doctor or a registered dietitian.

Common Misspellings

food allergy diet, eliminate diet, eliminatoin diet. elmination diet, food sensitivity diet, food intolerance diet, elimination deit, exclusion diet

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It’s important to remove triggers from toiletries too, not just the diet. I was very surprised how many soaps had food ingredients, especially soy!

posted Jan 18th, 2018 1:32 pm


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