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How to Start an Elimination Diet to Pinpoint Possible Food Allergies and Sensitivities

Hey, do you ever wonder if you might have a food allergy but you're not quite sure? Like, maybe you're feeling tired, dealing with skin issues, mood swings, asthma, arthritis, or lacking certain nutrients, but you're not really keen on taking medication.

An elimination diet is like a little experiment with food to figure out what might be causing your symptoms. It's a good way to start narrowing down the culprits. Give it a try!

 herbs that help with elimination diet

The Elimination Diet

Most elimination diets cut out all common allergens, including:

  • gluten

  • dairy

  • soy

  • refined/added sugar

  • peanuts

  • corn

  • alcohol

  • eggs, in some cases

  • packaged, processed or fast foods 

So how do you go about starting an elimination diet?

Follow these steps:

  • Stop eating all of the common allergens from the food list for at least three weeks.

  • Be sure to read food labels carefully to make sure you’re really avoiding even trace amounts of these foods. 

  • Keep a food journal during this time to record how you’re feeling on a daily basis. 

  • At the three week mark, start to reintroduce one food group at a time. Eat the food daily for 1–2 weeks and record your symptoms, taking note of any changes in symptoms between the elimination and reintroduction phases.

  • If symptoms return, you can confirm that this food is a trigger by eliminating it once again.  

  • The goal is to see if the symptoms clear up when the food is removed a second time.  

acai bowl on the elimination diet

This process can be somewhat lengthy, but it is a good way to pinpoint and remove foods that cause negative symptoms.

A Recipe To Try

Try this incredible, simple meal that is a great, elimination diet approved recipe: Kidney Beans with Rice and Avocado


  • 1 cup brown rice, rinsed well

  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth

  • 1 15oz. can kidney beans, rinsed

  • 1 tsp cumin, plus more to sprinkle on top

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 2 avocados, sliced

  • 2 green onions, chopped

avocadoes for the elimination diet


  • Bring 2 cups of chicken broth to a boil

  • Add 1 cup rice. Return to boil, then lower heat and cover. Simmer for 30-40 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed

  • Stir to fluff. Remove from heat and allow to stand for five minutes

  • While the rice is still warm, mix in the kidney beans, salt, and cumin.

  • Place some of the avocado slices and chopped green onions on top, and sprinkle with an additional dash of cumin.

  • Enjoy!


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