1. Beware of all things creamy:Emulsifiers, often get in things like non-dairy ice cream, almond milk, and creamy salad dressings, are chemicals that make what would be unmixable ingredients mixable which raise risk of Autoimmune disease. Specific emulsifiers contain lecithin, carrageenan, and anything with the suffix “gum.” Scan labels and keep away from products with these when possible—often, but not always, organic products are a safer bet.
2. Sprinkle and drizzle, don’t douse:The problem with processed foods is that you have no control over how much sugar and salt they contain. Sugar is often lurking in crazy quantities, and under 57 different names, in everything from energy bars to “healthy” granolas. Ditto for salt, which can be present at high levels even if the end product, like bread, soup, or a frozen diet meal, doesn’t taste overly salty. When you add your own salt, sweeteners, or condiments to mostly unprocessed whole foods, you control how much you ingest—and often, you need only a light sprinkle or drizzle to feel totally satisfied.
3. Pass on the patchwork meat:Meat glue, otherwise known as microbial transglutaminase, is an enzyme used to bind proteins in animal foods like hot dogs, bologna, imitation crab, chicken nuggets, and reconstituted steak—basically, anything that takes multiple bits and forms them into one cohesive unit. This is super-easy to avoid: Just stick to minimally messed-around-with “real” protein sources like chicken breasts and thighs, steaks, whole fish fillets, and organic tofu or tempeh.
4. Say bye to beige foods in a box:Not only are refined carbs like crackers, breads, pasta, and cookies a blood-sugar spike waiting to happen, many are also packed with gluten—a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye and the products made with them. While gluten isn’t a problem for everyone, it’s always good to eat more whole foods, so try swapping out some of your refined carbs for gluten-free whole grains like quinoa, millet, and amaranth.beige foods in a box leads to autoimmune disease.
5. Be skeptical of packaging…and frosting: Nanoparticles are materials that have been manipulated and reduced to the nano-scale (i.e., they’re incredibly tiny, which is why they have the ability to penetrate the gut) which raise risk of autoimmune disease. One common nanoparticle, titanium dioxide, is used in paper and plastic product packaging to maintain freshness, as well as in packaged foods like frosting, gum, and candy to lend a white pigment.
6. Don’t OD on sauerkraut.:While booze and fermented foods like sauerkraut can pack potent health benefits when consumed in moderation, they may damage the gut if consumed to excess, as they naturally contain the organic solvent acetaldehyde. In general, don’t consume more than one drink per day if you’re a woman, and start your fermented veggies.