WHAT ARE THEY?
The deadly-nightshade family plants, as regards fruit and vegetables, are not quite as dramatic as they sound. They include potatoes (not sweet potatoes), tomatoes, peppers (including chilli, cayenne and paprika), aubergine, goji berries, ground cherries, garden huckleberries, and cape gooseberries (normal are fine) and tobacco.
WHY AVOID THEM?
For many people, often those with autoimmune conditions and inflammatory joint pain such as osteoarthritis, avoiding consuming plants from the deadly-nightshade family can greatly improve health, as they can be intolerant to the high level of chemicals called alkaloids and lectins that are present. Symptoms include tummy upset, bloating, nausea, joint pain and inflammation, headaches and depression. Avoiding deadly-nightshade family plants has an especial impact on joint pain, reducing the inflammation that arthritics suffer. If you suffer from the above symptoms, look into an elimination diet, to see if they are affecting you. It could change your life.
It is also very important to add that many people have seen a complete reduction of their arthritic symptoms by cutting out gluten. You may be sensitive to gluten and not need to cut out nightshades, or you may be like me and need to cut out many things. For most peopleit is a matter of finding out which foods aggravate thir symptoms and cutting them out of their diet, which is easy to maintain as their quality of life improves.
IT’S NOT AS DIFFICULT AS IT MAY SEEM
It can be a very daunting prospect to give foods up. Potatoes, aubergine, tomatoes, peppers (including chilli, cayenne and paprika) are foods that comprise a large part of many people’s diet. They were my favourite staple ingredients and the basis of most of my diet, but I have found that giving them up and finding alternatives that are healthier for me has not been nearly as difficult as I anticipated, in fact it has opened up a whole new world of food and cooking and made my relationship to food far healthier and more mindful.
The Whole Food Rainbow is here to support you, and show the wide variety of delicious foods you can eat that will nourish your body and, if you need them to, hopefully reduce your pain. All my recipes are free from nightshade family plants, and are simple and easy to make. I include tips on how to make the adjustment easier, and which foods can mimic and replace those you have left behind in your pursuit of a healthier more active life.
First, try an elimination diet, to ascertain the effects of nightshade family plants on you. This is the proof that you need. If, after cutting them out completely for 4-12 weeks, (some people advise less, so I would just do what you can, keep a record and listen to your body). If by reintroducing them, for example, your joints become painful and inflamed, you know that you are sensitive, and should embrace the diet that is right for you. It is so worth it, arthritic and other joint pain is grueling to live with, anything that you can do to manage it will improve your quality of life.
you can do it!
Making such dietary changes is daunting, but believe me it’s worth it, not as difficult as you may perceive, and can actually be a journey towards appreciating food, diversifying our diet, learning new skills, and achieving optimal wellness.
All the recipes on this site will support you on that journey, making cutting out deadly-nightshade plants easier and more enjoyable.
GO FOR IT!
Please do share your experience of avoiding nightshade family plants.
Let’s keep in touch and support each other XX