Saturday, December 8, 2007

A Simple Salicylate Food List

Safe foods (Negligible amounts if any)

Banana, lime, pear - peeled.
Bamboo shoot, cabbage - green/white, celery green split peas -dried, lentils, lettuce - iceberg, swede.
dried (not borlotti). You may use canned beans but avoid any that have added ingredients such as sugar and salt. It is possible to buy beans in filtered water only and there are some organic varieties available. Check in your local health food shop.
Potatoes are fine but they must be of the old white variety and you must peel them.
Barley, buckwheat, millet, oats, rice, rye, wheat.
To avoid additives and hidden preservatives, all bread, biscuits, cakes etc.. should be home-made. Seeds and nuts
Poppy seeds.
Maple syrup, white sugar.
Meat, fish, poultry and eggs
Meat, fish, poultry and eggs are generally salicylate free but avoid liver and prawns and do not eat any processed meat.
Herbs, spices and condiments
Malt vinegar, saffron, sea salt, soy sauce (if free of spices).
Oils and fats Cold pressed oils such as sunflower or soy.
Margarine and processed rapeseed, safflower, soya bean, sunflower oils although low in salicylate are likely to contain preservatives that may mimic salicylate reactions and are best avoided.
Butter, cheese (not blue vein), milk, yoghurt - natural only but you can add your own fruit.
Carob powder, cocoa, tofu.
Decaffeinated coffee, milk, ovaltine, home made pear juice, soya milk, rice milk, water.

Very low

Golden delicious apple - peeled (green variety only), paw paw, pomegranate, tamarillo.
Brussel sprouts, borlotti beans, chives, choko, garlic, green peas, leek, mung bean sprouts, red cabbage, shallot, yellow split peas.
Nuts and seeds
Cashew nuts.
Fennel - dried, fresh parsley.
golden syrup
Meat and fish
Liver, prawns.


Fresh figs, lemon, mango, passion fruit, persimmon, red delicious apple - peeled, rhubarb.
Fresh asparagus, beetroot, cauliflower, green beans, onion, marrow, potato - white with peel, pumpkin,sweetcorn, tomato, turnip.
Frozen spinach.
Seeds and nuts
Hazelnuts, pecan, sunflower seeds.
Herbs, spices and condiments
Fresh coriander leaves.
Oils and fat
Dandelion coffee, shop bought pear juice.


Custard apple, kiwi fruit, loquat, lychee, pear with peel.
Aubergine - peeled, carrot, lettuces other than iceberg, tomato juice, mushrooms. Tinned asparagus, beetroot, black olives, sweetcorn.
Seeds and nuts
Desiccated coconut, peanut butter, walnuts.
Coco cola, rose hip tea.


Avocado, most other varieties of apples, cantaloupe melon, cherries, grapefruit, mandarin, mulberry, nectarine peach, tangelo, watermelon.
Alfalfa sprouts, aubergine with peel, broad bean, broccoli, cucumber, tinned okra, parsnips, fresh spinach, sweet potato, tinned tomatoes and tomato puree, watercress.
Seeds and nuts
Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, pine nuts, pistachio, sesame seeds.
Herbs, spices and condiments
Yeast extracts.
Oils and fats
Almond oil, corn oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, walnut oil.

Very high

Fresh apricots, blackberry, blackcurrant, blueberry, boysenberry, cranberry, fresh dates, grapes, guava, orange, pineapple, plum, strawberry, sultana.
Chicory, chilli peppers, courgette, endive, tinned green olives, peppers, radish, water chestnut.
Seeds and nuts
Almonds, peanuts with skins on.
Herbs, spices and condiments
Basil, bay leaf, caraway, chilli powder, nutmeg, vanilla essence, white pepper.
Oils and fats
Coconut oil, olive oil.
Peppermint tea.

Extremely high

Dried apricots and dates. Currant, loganberry, prunes, raisin, raspberry, red currant.
Herbs, spices and condiments
Allspice, aniseed, black pepper, cardamom, cayenne, celery powder, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, curry powder, dill, fenugreek, garam masala, ginger, liquorice, mace, mint, mustard, oregano, paprika, rosemary, sage, tarragon, turmeric, thyme, wine and cider vinegars.
Cordials and fruit flavoured drinks, fruit and vegetable juices, tea.


Alcohol varies in amount. Given the difficulty in fully ascertaining the ingredients of alcoholic beverages. The following list can be only be treated as a very basic guide to levels. The safest course of action would be to introduce your favourite drink as a test.
Probably safe : Gin, whisky and vodka.
High: Beer, brandy, cider, sherry.
Very high: Liqueurs, port, rum, wine.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Salicylates in Food

Sensitivity to Aspirin, Anti-Inflammatory Painkillers (NSAIDS), Food Additives and Salicylates

This sensitivity can be difficult to diagnose as a number of different medication (painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs) several common food additive (dyes and preservatives and in some cases a naturally occurring food substance (salicylate) might all be involved.
Different symptoms can be caused, including urticaria (nettle rash) angioedema (allergic tissue swelling) nasal polyps and asthma. In rare cases the drugs listed can cause severe and even dangerous reactions, and if you have been advised to avoid them, you should do so with care.
Sensitivity to food additives and salicylates is highly unlikely to be as dangerous, but the only way to diagnose it is to see if frequent symptoms disappear when these foods are avoided.

Salicylates are aspirin-like substances found naturally in a number of different foods, especially certain fruits and vegetables, dried herbs, spices , and alcoholic drinks. Some patients who are sensitive to aspirin and the NSAIDs may get symptoms after eating these foods. However, we do not recommend that patients with known aspirin allergy avoid salicylates simply as a matter of course. For example, research has shown that most aspirin sensitive asthmatics are not affected by high salicylate foods.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Where to begin?

Basically my story begins to unfold as of around 4 months ago.
Prior to September this year I had suffered from chronic hayfever and allergies for roughly 7 years. This began with what seemed to be relatively normal bouts of sneezing and progressed to severe daily sneezing episodes that sometimes consumed the entire day... and anyone who has had hayfever realises that this is very energy zapping! Not only do you feel as though everything inside your head and face is itchy it is very tiring sneezing and blowing and sniffing constantly... and we won't get into the sheer unsightliness of it. Not a good look when you are out in mixed company!

So in September this year I realised something was a little off track when I awoke and saw my sinuses must have become so severely infected that the bridge of my nose... dead center between my almond shaped eyes, had swollen significantly and had become a whiter shade of pale.

I'm the first to admit I'd tied one on the night before and I was feeling rather sorry for myself to say the least after an evening of far too many vodka's on the rocks, but this was out the ordinary... beyond any hangover... and I was feeling light headed and suffering from an extremely severe pain all around my eyes and nose.
My own mother took one look at me and insisted on driving me to the doctors, but as it was Saturday and I had slept in, they had just closed up for the day, so I went home, went back to bed and drove myself down on Monday morning after a painful weekend wondering what exactly could be wrong with my nose? Maybe I was just having an allergic reaction to something?

By Monday the swelling had subsided somewhat but I was still in alot of pain. I passed on the idea of going to my usual GP for some bizarre reason and booked my appointment at the new surgery just up the road. The new doctor was fantastic!
He performed all the kosher tests around my head, the usual, ear, nose throat stuff and then informed me that I should have a CT Scan to check my sinuses, fearing that they were badly blocked!
I had all the tests done within 3 days and was back for my consult with my new doctor by the end of the week getting my referral to the ENT Specialist.

Long story short... I had Completely Blocked Sinuses. All areas that show clear on a sinus scan were filled on mine. Not one single expanse on the scan of fresh air in my little sinuses whatsoever! No wonder I was in pain!
My ENT Specialist inspected my sinuses with an Endoscope (a little tube with a camera on the end) and had to inform me that I had major Nasal Polyps that needed to be treated.
The outlook from here was looking totally different to what I expected...
I had sore sinuses for a couple of weeks...
I'd suffered from chronic hayfever for 7 years! Nobody had ever checked this before! What was wrong with my last doctor? The one I had been seeing for 12 or so years! I hadn't been warned any of this was happening! I was quite angry... and angry wasn't the word it was more so disappointed... disappointed that my GP of 12 years had neglected to even test me for what was the most logical explanation for a majority of my 7 years of allergies.

So that day... at my new friend, the ENT Specialists Office I was faced with the scenario...
Surgery, Steroid Treatment, Complete Diet Change.
Sounds like fun hey!

Well... this is the beginning of my "Intolerant Life". The struggles with what I have and will continue to go through... just like a million other people out there who have an intolerance or allergy or some other type of ailment that has and will change them forever!

Within these Blog pages I am going to try and research new finding of this Salicylate Sensitivity that I am suffering from along with countless other people.
I love to cook so I will try and find, and even create new Recipes and Menu's that we can all follow so our diet isn't so blah...
I will create listings and consult dietitians and naturopaths to find out what we can and can't eat and keep track of new foods coming out that may be okay for us all!

I want to do this the right way... Being only 28 I'll be doing it for a long time yet so I'm going in head first!
If I can make a difference to you or someone you know... Please send me some encouragement!

Hope you all have a magical day!