Nightshade Vegetables

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome | Anti Inflammatory Foods 

The term ‘Nightshade’ is not a household name, and upon first hearing it, some people might even be picturing a pair of sunglasses. Nightshades are a type of plant, or 2,800 types of plants to be precise. These plants all produce a vegetable or spice that could be harmful to some people who ingest them.

Although there is a general consensus that vegetables are healthy, what if these types of the vegetables are actually hurting you? This seems shocking, but there is evidence that certain vegetables and spices can ultimately cause inflammation and pain to those who eat them. I personally cannot eat nightshade vegetables as they cause joint issues and inflammation in my body. Many of my clients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome can not eat nightshades because they cause pain in their bodies; therefore we stick to a diet right in anti-inflammatory foods.

Nightshade Vegetables comprise over 200 varieties of foods and spices. A few examples are:

  • Eggplant
  • Tomatoes
  • Potatoes
  • Peppers
  • Tomatillos
  • Huckleberry
  • Pimentos
  • Paprika
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Cayenne pepper

The reason behind the sensitivity nightshade vegetables cause is alkaloids. Alkaloids are a chemical compound that is comprised heavily of nitrogen and some can be quite acidic. When we eat these nightshade vegetables, some studies have found they can mettle with the calcium levels in our body, thus causing us joint pain, inflammation, digestive issues and in some rare cases can lead to GERD or acid reflux.

If you think you experience any of these health issues caused by nightshade vegetables, don’t worry; the test to find out is very easy. Simply try removing these foods from your diet for two weeks and see if your inflammation, joint issues, and digestive issues improve.

If you don’t experience any adverse reactions after eating nightshade vegetables, you can slowly add them back slowly into your lifestyle one at a time, but always in moderation. Check out my useful tips and information on the Elimination Diet for more information about rein-introducing foods back into your lifestyle.

Be sure to keep a daily log of how you feel when adding back in new foods. Are you tired? Do you have anxiety? Do you have sinus congestion or trouble sleeping? Headaches? Joint pain or stomach bloating and discomfort? These are a few things you can look for when you add back in nightshades to your lifestyle.

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