Salicylates (Feingold Diet)

This is particularly helpful for people with sulphation problems (sulphation is one of the methods our body uses to detoxify).  

This is a list of high salicylate foods that the Feingold programme recommends avoiding.

Note, this diet is best implemented with the help of a nutritionist.

 

Source - Feingold programme.  http://www.feingold.org.dietshell

 

Salicylates are found in the following:

Natural flavouring and colouring

Aspirin and products containing aspirin and salicylic acid.

 

High Salicylate Foods:

Fruits

Avocado

Apples (most varieties)

Apricots

Berries (all)

Cherries

Dates

Grapes (also raisins, currants, sultanas)

Grapefruit

Guava

Kiwi

Melon (water and Cantaloupe)

Nectarines

Oranges

Peaches

Pineapple

Plums

Prunes

Tangerines

Vegetables

Alfalfa sprouts

Chicory

Courgette

Cucumbers and cucumber pickles

Endive

Gherkins

Peppers (bell and chilli)

Radish

Tomatoes and tomato products

Watercress

Zucchini

Seeds, Nuts

Almonds

Brazil nuts

Macadamia nuts

Peanuts with skins on

Pine nuts

Pistachio

Sesame seeds

Herbs, Spices, Condiments

Bayleaf

Cardamom, caraway, cayenne, cumin, curry

Cinnamon, nutmeg

Chilli powder, garam masala, tumeric

Cider and cider vinegar (apples)

Cloves

Dill, mint, oregano, rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme and mixed herbs

Five spice

Marmite

Mustard

Ginger

Paprika

Pepper (black and white)

Beverages

Coffee

Tea (all brands)

Peppermint tea

Port, rum

Wine and wine vinegar (grapes)

Other

Molasses and honey

Wintergreen ointment (methyl salicylate)

Rose hips and acerola (often found in vitamins)

Foods indicated in red are found in practice to be the most problematic, where salicylate sensitivity exists.  Avoid all these foods for 4-6 weeks and as many of the remaining ‘black’ ones as possible (particularly grapefruit, kiwi and pineapple). 

 

Foods indicated in green below represent ‘Safe’ foods (they contain negligible or low levels of salicylates).  Foods indicated in black contain moderate amounts of salicylates – eat sparingly.

Fruits

Banana

Fresh figs

Lemon

Lime

Mango

Passion fruit

Pear – peeled

Apple –  green golden delicious, peeled

Apple – red golden delicious, peeled

Paw paw

Pomegranate

Rhubarb

Tamarillo

Vegetables

Asparagus

Bamboo shoots

Beans and peas

Beetroot

Broccoli

Brown lentils

Brussel sprouts

Cabbage

Carrot

Cauliflower

Celery

Chive

Leek

Lettuce

Mushroom

Onion

Parsnip

Potato (peeled)

Red cabbage

Spinach

Sweet potato

Swede

Seeds, Nuts

Cashews

Coconut

Hazel nuts

Poppy seed

Walnuts

Herbs, Spices, Condiments

Garlic

Malt vinegar

Parsley

Saffron

Soy sauce

Vanilla

Beverages

Camomile tea

Dandelion coffee

Decaffeinated coffee

Pear juice

Gin, whisky, vodka

Other

Carob

Cold pressed oils such as sunflower

After a few weeks experiment with re-introducing the high salicylate foods – although not too frequently.  These foods are often tolerated after a period of abstinence.  Ask your Nutritionist to take you through the full procedure.  Supplementation to support sulphation also improves tolerance.  This is something that would be considered if improvements are seen on eliminating the salicylate rich foods.

 

List expansion is based on research by Anne Swain.  Anne is the head dietician at the allergy unit in the dept of clinical immunology at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.  She is a key member of the team that leads the world in assessments and management of food intolerances.  She is co-author of ‘Friendly Food’, ‘The Simplified Elimination Diet’ and ‘Salicylates, Amines and Glutamates’.

 

Within the Feingold web site, reference to Anne’s research is referred to as ‘definitive’.

Her research is based on salicylate levels per 100g of food, which would suggest that the herbs and spice list may not be such a problem (who eats 100g of mustard or oregano?)

 

The ‘red’ foods represent those found by the Feingold programme to be the most problematic. 

 

There are three additional foods that I would emphasise on this list - grapefruit, kiwi and pineapple.  These are high salicylate containing foods according to Anne Swain’s research, although not flagged up on the Feingold programme.

 

Lastly, Anne Swain’s research enables a list of ‘safe’ foods to be recommended. Bananas are very low salicylate containing foods.  However, they contain high levels of phenolics* so are indicated in black i.e. to be consumed sparingly.  Cocoa is another very low salicylate food but high in phenolics and has been left off the list completely.

 

* the PST (phenol sulpho transferase) enzyme is needed to metabolise high-phenolic substances and has been shown to be low in those with autism (and ADHD).  Salicylates depress PST levels even further.  Hence, as well as trying a high-salicylate food free period (to try and raise PST levels), avoiding high phenolic foods such as bananas is also judicious (to take stress off the enzyme system itself).

 

"Today 95% of all chronic disease is caused by food choice, toxic food ingredients, nutritional deficiencies and lack of physical excercise."
Mike Adams