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Forget Orange, Elimination Diets are the New Black

Foregoing entire food groups to uncover hidden sensitivities has become all the rage -- but are they conclusive?

At long last there's a diet craze afoot that has nothing whatsoever to do with shedding pounds.

Elimination diets, the removal of certain food groups to ascertain your body's sensitivity and/or bad reaction to them, are rapidly gaining momentum.

When modern medicine comes up short in determining why something hurts or reacts badly, many people are taking matters into their own hands -- and shopping carts. Stomach cramps, painful joints and skin eruptions are but a few of the myriad conditions folks seek root causes for.

READ: Healthy Lunchbox Makeovers

Gluten, dairy, nuts, sugar and alcohol are the 5 biggies when it comes to the food groups people forego in the name of finding the trigger that ultimately ails them.

Is this a productive practice? According to the Wall Street Journal, "There is little science to prove specific cause-and-effect behind this style of elimination diet and an improvement in symptoms. Yet a lot of people report feeling significantly better." Could the power of suggestion be behind this? Perhaps. But it's debatable. As Linda Lee, director of the Johns Hopkins Integrative Medicine & Digestive Center tells the paper, people feel better but is it because "they are eating healthier or because, say, wheat was taken away?"

To get a handle on what's really going on, some doctors recommend a three-week elimination for patients suffering from asthma, sinus infections, digestive problems, joint inflammation and a few other symptoms but don't suggest it as a plan of action for everyone. For those who just have a general feeling of malaise, it's better, they say, to embark on a diet consisting of "high-fiber, multi-colored, whole foods."

READ: 9 White Lies You Need to Stop Telling Your Doctor


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