September 07, 2011

Inflammation and Food...

I have continued to read more and more about this and there seems to be mounting evidence.  Here is another great article with lots of links to click through and read more.

Do Nightshades Promote Inflammation?

Also... my postings are not ALL the information there is on inflammation nor is it intended to diagnose anything. It never was designed for that.  It is MY personal journey to find what is going on with MY body.  Everyone is different so you need to find what works for you.  I only share information in order to give you something else to CONSIDER and not to tell others what they should do.  Please take my posts in the way they are intended.  Thank you for stopping by and have a great day.
I have recently been on a journey. About six months ago my nurse practitioner gave me the diagnosis of "mild fibromyalgia symptoms" meaning that I had some but not a complete abundance.  It has been noted in many scientific research that this syndrome does not necessarily come on all at once but slowly over time.  I was not showing full blown symptoms but some symptoms that indicated that might be what was going on. Now, I have been back to the doctor... a new doctor because the old one went on maternity leave and decided not to go back to work. We are testing for the full blown thing now. I am having LOTS of symptoms that have escalated in the past month or so. For me, that means I am on a quest for a NUTRITIONAL/DIETARY solution because that is what I do. I turn to the diet first to see what is going on. As a business owner I try and do this for my clients, too. If we are eating the right things we will begin to heal and feel good. Sometimes we need medications but so often, if we are getting the right nutrition and the right amount of water it can make a HUGE difference in how we feel.

With that being said, my first trail has taken me to foods that cause inflammation. I learned today that plants in the "Nightshade" family cause joint and internal inflammation to be worsened as well as causing acne on the outer skin. Now, you ask, what the heck is a NIGHTSHADE PLANT? I know this because I asked that question, too.

Encyclopedia Britannica defines Nightshade, also known as Solanaceae as follows...

any plant of the genus Solanum (family Solanaceae), which has about 2,300 species, and certain other plants of the same family and other families. The species usually called nightshade in North America and England is Solanum dulcamara, also called bittersweet and woody nightshade. Its foliage and egg-shaped red berries are poisonous, the active principle being solanine, which can cause convulsions and death if taken in large doses. The black nightshade (S. nigrum) is also generally considered poisonous, but its fully ripened fruit and foliage are cooked and eaten in some areas.

Ok, so that did not help much! LOL I wanted to know WHAT KIND OF FOODS ARE THESE? So, here is more from EB...

Solanaceae (in Solanaceae (plant family)) ...eggplant (S. melongena); tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum); garden, or capsicum, pepper (Capsicum annuum and C. frutescens); tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum); deadly nightshade, the source of belladonna (Atropa belladonna); the poisonous jimsonweed (Datura stramonium) and nightshades (S. nigrum, S. dulcamara,

basically these foods have alkaloids and alkaloids cause inflammation

Oh, that is better....

But... not really. I love those foods! Ok, that stinks!!! AND THEY ARE CONSIDERED POISONOUS TO THE BODY... in large quantities!!! YIKES!

The following foods have been found to cause inflammation:

all kinds of peppers both mild and spicy, jalapenos, pimentos, bell peppers, chilis, etc.
all products made from peppers... spices, paprika, cayenne pepper, crushed red peppers, some curries, tabasco sauce or the equivalent
ground cherries
Potatoes... but NOT SWEET POTATOES (hurray!)

Note that cooking these items REDUCES but does not ELIMINATE the effects on the body. If you are sensitive to them or if you have a history of inflammation you may want to consider cutting these out of your diet.

Where I Stand...

I am going to go on an elimination diet and test these for myself. Each person may react differently and I have to know, for myself, if these are triggers for me.

Some resources


I Heart Wellness

Encyclopedia Britannica

Nightshade plant science information

Whole Foods Research Page

Native Remedies Blog

I am also reading this...


  1. consider looking through this fellow's blog. he's a biologist and does use a lot of science-speak, but he also has a lot of knowledge on inflammation. and if you have questions he'll often answer them.

  2. Thanks... I will check it out.

  3. Leann, I've been going through a similar thing. I have been feeling more and more arthritic and looked into the nightshade theory after eating a perfectly healthy raw meal and feeling like I was 100 years old afterward. So weird! But I had eaten lots of tomatoes and a red bell pepper in the meal. It's so frustrating trying to figure out what's wrong with me. Like you, I look to my diet first. I eat healthier than ever, but so many so-called healthy foods seem to cause trouble for some of us. Things like whole wheat and dairy. It's a real pain trying to get better. It's like entering some convoluted maze. Everyone has a different opinion and many of them contradict each other!