Sjogren's Syndrome Diet

Sjogren's syndrome is also called Sjogren's disease. It is an autoimmune condition in which you have symptoms affecting your entire body. The typical symptoms include having a dry nose, dry eyes, and a dry mouth. Other symptoms you might find are delayed stomach emptying and severe heartburn. Many people with Sjogren's also have muscle pains and joint pain similar to arthritis. Fortunately, a Sjogren's syndrome diet can help relieve some of your symptoms.

What Should Be Included in Sjogren's Syndrome Diet?

In a diet for Sjogren's syndrome, you eat to relieve the inflammation often associated with this autoimmune disease. The diet is highly anti-inflammatory and includes eating whole grains, nuts, leafy green vegetables, high fat fish and other foods known to combat inflammation. Here's what you'd better include in the diet:

  • Foods that are very moist. Because people with Sjogren's syndrome have dry mouths, nose, and eyes, a Sjogren's syndrome diet should contain foods that are high in moisture. They include foods like yogurt, gravies, sauces, and mayo, which are added to foods to make them not so hard to swallow. You can also liquefy foods by the addition of melted margarine, skim milk, water or broth.
  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Be sure to eat those that are very colorful because they have the most phytonutrients in them. They are also high in antioxidants and fiber. The antioxidants will lessen the amount of inflammation in your body. Make sure the fruits and vegetables are raw, so you can get the most nutrients out of them.
  • Healthy fats. Healthy fats contain omega 3 fatty acids that are anti-inflammatory. You can get them in mackerel, sardines, and tuna as well as extra virgin olive oil, certain seeds, raw nuts, and avocado. Season them with ginger, turmeric and garlic, which are also anti-inflammatory foods.
  • Take in a lot of fiber. High fiber foods can help detoxify your system and can keep your bowels moving. Taking in about a tablespoon per day of flaxseeds is a good choice. It can be sprinkled onto other foods.

 

  • Choose meats wisely. You should eat meat from animals that have grazed on grass. This includes cows and bison that contain fats that are highly anti-inflammatory. Free range chickens are also a good choice.

 

A List of Foods That Help with Sjogren's Syndrome

Vegetables

Asparagus, Brussels sprouts, beets, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, green beans, and kale.

Fruits

Apricots, apples, blackberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, Kiwi, lemon, honey dew melon, pears and papaya

Grains

Quinoa, buckwheat, wild rice, millet, tapioca, red rice, sorghum, amaranth, and brown rice

Protein

Eggs, chicken, turkey, lentils, split peas, bee pollen, spirulina, and legumes

Herbs/spices

Sea salt, carob powder, peppercorns, and turmeric

Nuts/Seeds

Sesame seeds, walnuts, almonds, chia seeds, cashews, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds, and tahini

Fish

Trout, halibut, salmon, and tuna

Others

Herbal tea, coconut water, seltzer, yerba mate tea, avocado oil, grapeseed oil, hemp seed oil, walnut oil and purified water

What Should Be Avoided in Sjogren's Syndrome Diet?

There are certain foods you need to avoid for Sjogren's syndrome.

  • Avoid foods that are high in hydrogenated or Trans fats. These are highly inflammatory foods and should be avoided. Red meats are often avoided because they contain arachidonic acid that is very inflammatory. Trans fats are bad for you all around and can also cause heart disease.
  • Processed foods and refined oils. Foods like canola oil and corn oil are too high in omega 6 fatty acids which, when digested, turn into arachidonic acid, causing inflammation. Processed foods such as corn syrup, candy, pasta, breads and cakes are high in carbs that raise the blood sugar quickly,and then there is an inflammatory response when insulin is released by the pancreas in response to the high blood glucose levels.
  • Spicy or sugary foods. Foods that irritate the mouth by being too spicy and citrus fruits cannot be eaten in a Sjogren's syndrome diet. The mouth is already dry and tender and these things increase the irritation of the mouth even more. Sugary foods (as well as artificial sweeteners) should be avoided because you don't have much saliva and have a greater risk of getting cavities.
  • Avoid coffee and alcohol. Both alcohol and coffee should be avoided because they make an already dry mouth even drier. Stick to water and other beverages.
  • Preservatives. Foods that are highly preserved can cause the body to become more inflamed.
  • Wheat. Wheat products contain gluten, which, in many people with autoimmune diseases, is not very well tolerated.
  • Foods that are allergenic. This includes foods that cause allergies in many people, such as dairy products, peanuts and eggs. People with autoimmune diseases will experience more inflammation when they eat these highly allergenic foods.
  • Other foods to avoid. Stay away from tough meats as they can cause irritation of the mouth and pain with eating. Also stay away from popcorn, carbonated drinks and crispy breads because they do not go well with having a dry mouth.

If you want to know more about Sjogren's syndrome, watch the video below:

 
 
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