Functional medicine is about personalised medicine and diets. So in general what foods you should and shouldn’t eat differs from person to person. That being set there are commonalities that certain foods are best to avoid in general, you shouldn’t eat In this article you will learn why that is.
Why it’s best to avoid gluten according to functional medicine
The problem with gluten is that more and more evidence is showing that it can trigger inflammation and leaky gut. It causes an inflammarty reaction and increased levels of a protein called zonulin. With more zonulin tight junctions between intestinal cells that opens a gap between them. Like a row of bricks with no cement left between them. This is called a leaky gut.
Once you it, it will cause a cascade of problems like virusses, toxins and bacteria coming into your blood stream because gluten can go through your gut’s barrier. This will trigger your immune system and will cause it to become over-activated which created inflammation.
It also might even cause more food sensitivities to develop to new foods that now can get through the barrier. Cross-reactive foods with similar proteine structures are most likely.
Why it’s best to avoid dairy according to functional medicine
Mark Hyman, one of the leading experts in the field of functional medicine has this to say about dairy: “It’s nature’s perfect food – but only if you’re a calf.” Which makes sense when you think about it. According to research 75% of the worlds population can’t consume dairy properly. Countries with the lowest dairy consumption like Asia and Africa have the lowest rate of osteoporosis which is a bone disease that occors when the body loses too much bone. That’s weird right? Because you probably heard that dairy should be good for your bones.
Also in another research it shows that consuming dairy products regularly increases your risk of prostate cancer by 30 to 50%
The main protein found in milk is called casein. This protein can cause inflammation. Leading to eczema, ear infections, congestion, sinus problems and many more problems like acne, diarrhea, allergies, irritable bowel and bloating.
When coming off dairy try it for 3 weeks you will probably feel more energetic and more fit. Then reïntroduce the food again and see how you feel.
For more in depth information you can also watch this video:
Why it’s best to avoid corn according to functional medicine
Corn is not a vegetable, it’s a grain. And it’s one of the most sugary and starchy and empty grain there is. It is also a product that is mass produced and therefore full of pesticides. The corn that is eaten is also in most cases meant for animal food.
Why it’s best to avoid Soybean oil according to functional medicine
Soybean oil is one of the most abundant sources of omega-6 fatty acids and it also contains high levels of glyphosate (round-up). It is found in most fast foods and also in most fried foods at cafeteria, diners and restaurant along with other oils that are bad for you when over-consumed.
Other foods to avoid
- Caffeïne and alcohol. Caffeïne because it’s inflammatory and increases stress levels. Alcohol because it you get an increased risk for liver disease, cancer, diabetes, neurological complication and bone damage, also because of inflammation.
- Anything with “hydrogenated” in the name. It’s just another word for trans fat.
- Anything advertised on TV. The worst foods get the most airtime, probably because people know to stay away but can’t because they keep getting cravings from all the advertisements.
- Anything at a drive-through window
- Anything with artificial sweeteners as the evidence on sucralose, aspartame and maltitol seem to affect gut health and glucose tolerance.
- Anything with high-fructose corn syrupe. It is a major cause of heart disease, obesity, cancer, dementia, liver failure, tooth decay and more.
With functional medicine it never is a one-size-fits all type of deal. You might be able to consume gluten or dairy perfectly fine, but in the case of these food substances you would be one of the lucky few. It is more likely that the foods in this article will trigger an unwanted reaction in your body making you feel like crap (pardon my language). So what is best to do is to see a functional medicine practioner and find out for yourself what foods are good for you and which are not. You can also experiment yourself by eliminating foods from your diet for a couple of weeks and reïntroducing them later on to see how you react.
- Michaelsson K, Wolk A, Langenskiold S, et al. Milk intake and risk of mortality and fractures in women and men: cohort studies. Bmj 2014;349:g6015.
- Lanou AJ. Should dairy be recommended as part of a healthy vegetarian diet? Counterpoint. The American journal of clinical nutrition 2009;89:1638S-42S.
- Dahl-Jorgensen K, Joner G, Hanssen KF. Relationship between cows’ milk consumption and incidence of IDDM in childhood. Diabetes Care 1991;14:1081-3.
- Malosse D, Perron H, Sasco A, Seigneurin JM. Correlation between milk and dairy product consumption and multiple sclerosis prevalence: a worldwide study. Neuroepidemiology 1992;11:304-12.
- Key TJ. Diet, insulin-like growth factor-1 and cancer risk. Proc Nutr Soc 2011:1-4.
- Kritchevsky D. Dietary protein, cholesterol and atherosclerosis: a review of the early history. The Journal of nutrition 1995;125:589S-93S.
- Kamiński S, Cieslińska A, Kostyra E. Polymorphism of bovine beta-casein and its potential effect on human health. J Appl Genet. 2007;48:189–98.
- Brantl V, Teschemacher H, Henschen A, Lottspeich F. Novel opioid peptides derived from Casein(β -Casomorphins). I. Isolation from bovine casein peptone. Hoppe-Seyler’s Z Für Physiol Chem. 1979;b360:1211–24.
- Whiteley P, Haracopos D, Knivsberg A-M, Reichelt KL, Parlar S, Jacobsen J, et al. The ScanBrit randomised, controlled, single-blind study of a gluten- and casein-free dietary intervention for children with autism spectrum disorders. Nutr Neurosci. 2010;13:87–100.
- Millward C, Ferriter M, Calver S, Connell-Jones G. Gluten- and casein-free diets for autistic spectrum disorder. Cochrane Database Syst Rev Online 2004; CD003498.
- Whiteley P, Shattock P, Knivsberg A-M, Seim A, Reichelt KL, Todd L, et al. Gluten- and casein-free dietary intervention for autism spectrum conditions. Front Hum Neurosci. 2012;6:344.
- Pennesi CM, Klein LC. Effectiveness of the gluten-free, casein-free diet for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder: based on parental report. Nutr Neurosci. 2012;15:85–91