14/08/2014 16:42 BST | Updated 20/05/2015 10:12 BST

Elimination Diets: The Next Big Food Fad?

Cutting out certain foods from our diets is no new thing. It's a process that has been relied upon to safely detect allergies and intolerances but this idea of elimination has recently become popular - for a different reason.

The Wall Street Journal reports many people are choosing to stop eating various food groups, without medical guidance, in order to cure issues such as headaches, tiredness and joint pain.

Coffee in blue cup and saucer, top view

The aim of this elimination approach is to cut certain foods out for two to three weeks, then gradually introduce them back into the diet to find out how the body responds.

35-year-old Amanda Deming spoke to the WSJ about an elimination diet called the Whole 30. She wanted to find a cure for her digestion problems, but the process wasn't easy. She cut out gluten, dairy, sugar and sweeteners, white potatoes, alcohol, food additives, legumes and grains for 30 days.

"You eat meats, fruits and vegetables," Deming, told the WSJ. After two weeks, her stomach cramps had eased and she noticed her energy levels were up.

So - is this diet safe? Although there's no scientific evidence to support the improvement of certain ailments by eliminating foods, Jerrold Turner, associate chairman of the Department of Pathology at the University of Chicago says there's no harm in trying.

"If it makes people feel better, I'm not sure why we should oppose it," he says.

And if you're not down for giving up all your favourite foods at once? A "high-fibre, multicoloured, whole-food diet," is the best option, says Dr. Dave Rakel from the University of Wisconsin.

Want to find out more about the elimination diet? Visit the Wall Street Journal to read the full article.

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