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What You Should Know About Nightshades

nightshades foodNo, we aren’t talking about wearing your sunglasses at night!

Instead, nightshades refer to a group of fruits and vegetables that have a natural occurring pesticide in them to help protect their growth in the wild. While this may be beneficial for them, it’s not ideal for some humans—and you might be one of them.

So, what are nightshades? Nightshades include potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers among others. These fruits and vegetables all have a natural occurring pesticide within them to help ward off predators and allow them to grow uninterrupted.

Problems with Nightshades

While some of us have no problems processing nightshades, it’s not that easy for others. And the worst part? You probably don’t know that they could be the culprit.

In our practice, we have patients come to us regularly with gut and arthritis issues. After discussing their diet and doing a few tests, sometimes it’s decided that cutting out nightshades should be the first step.


Because nightshades are processed by our liver, which helps to detoxify the things we’re eating. When our bodies are predisposed to not handling specific things well, problems can happen. While there haven’t been too many studies on nightshades and their effects on people, it’s entirely possible that eating too many nightshades leads to things like IBS, leaky gut, and even arthritis—since arthritis is rooted in inflammation!

Be Your Own Detective

Nutrition requires a lot of detective work to pinpoint exactly what’s causing you problems. If you eat a lot of the produce mentioned above, try laying off of it for a month and see if your symptoms improve.

You can also schedule an appointment with our practice—we’d be happy to learn more about your issues and how we can help solve them.

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