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Elimination Diet

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Updated November 18, 2011

Definition:

An elimination diet is the strict removal of a food or foods from your diet.

Elimination diets may be used to help your doctor determine if you are allergic to a food. If you test positive for an allergy, your doctor may have you strictly avoid that food for a few weeks to see if your symptoms improve.

Elimination diets are also the main treatment for food allergies. If your doctor confirms your allergy to a food, the only way to avoid reactions in the future is to completely avoid eating that food, in all of its forms.

If you are going to follow an elimination diet long-term, it is very important to consult a dietician familiar with food allergy elimination diets to make sure that you are able to get the nutrition you need. Children especially need to be sure they are eating a variety of healthy foods to support their growth and development.

Sources:

Chafen JJ, et al. Diagnosing and managing common food allergies: a systematic review. JAMA. 2010 May 12;303(18):1848-56.

Grimshaw KE. Dietary management of food allergy in children. Proc Nutr Soc. 2006 Nov;65(4):412-7.

Mofidi S. Nutritional management of pediatric food hypersensitivity. Pediatrics. 2003 Jun;111(6 Pt 3):1645-53.

Also Known As: Allergy avoidance diet
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