How to Reduce Chronic Pain With a Rotation Diet

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Are you suffering from chronic pain, having tried everything with little success? It might be time to try rotation dieting. This is a pain control method that involves eliminating foods at different times to control symptoms that are often triggered by these foods. This is a chronic pain control method that has been found to work for chronic ailments like asthma, back and neck pain.

What is a rotation diet?

It has been well documented that certain foods exacerbate chronic pain, mainly by having an inflammatory effect. Dairy, soy, and gluten are the typical inflammation triggers in many people. These ingredients are found in many processed and fast foods, which also have high sugar and salt levels.



These foods trigger immune responses that lead to inflammation, as the body reacts to what it perceives as threats. This can cause chronic pain in joints or trigger allergic reactions like in the case of asthma.

A rotation diet seeks to eliminate these triggers. Some of the foods that are targeted for elimination include fast foods cooked with hydrogenated oils, processed dairy foods, beef, eggs, dairy, shellfish, and wheat-based foods. You can also go a step further and eliminate tea, coffee, and chocolate for a short time to see if they are contributing to your symptoms.

How does it work?

Rotation dieting is eating one food (to test for symptoms) and then avoiding that food for four days, then re-introducing that same food to test for symptoms again. The easiest way to do this is to eliminate foods by batch (see list below). For example, all gluten products, all dairy products, or all egg products, etc. Go off these foods until chronic pain symptoms reduce significantly without the use of pain-relief drugs.

Important note: Pain relief may take more than four days if intolerance to eliminated food is strong. For example, gluten often takes several weeks to stop having a negative effect on the body if you are intolerant to it.

Reintroduce foods one by one. For example, if you gave up eggs for four days, try eggs. If symptoms reappear, keep off eggs until symptoms disappear. Have some eggs a second time. If symptoms reappear, go off eggs completely. If there are no symptoms, you can continue having eggs from time to time.



Go on to the next food to try. For example, milk. Drink a glass of milk on one day, then, avoid all dairy products for four days. Try milk again. If your symptoms reappear, go off milk and dairy products completely.

And so on and so forth.

How effective is it?

A recent medical study showed the effectiveness of an elimination diet for two asthma sufferers. One, a 61-year-old woman, and the other a 12-year-old boy. By following a rotation diet, the 61-year-old woman eliminated asthma symptoms, while the boy continued with his usual diet and his symptoms persisted.

By reducing autoimmune triggers, a rotation diet eases inflammation and helps chronic pain and other symptoms subside naturally.

What should I eliminate?

A rotation diet is a bit easier to manage than an elimination diet. Eliminate one of these groups of foods for a week (four days at the least), then reintroduce them to test for a reaction as described above.

Once you’ve gone through one list of foods, give yourself a break for a couple of days, and try the next “batch” of foods, going through the same process.


  • Starch – All gluten-containing foods, rye, oats, potatoes


  • Meat and fish – Canned meat, beef, chicken, or pork, eggs, bacon, hot dogs, sausage, shellfish


  • Dairy products – Milk, yogurt, butter, ice cream, cheese, margarine, butter, mayonnaise, and other dairy spreads


  • Sweeteners – White or brown sugar, maple syrup, corn syrup, high fructose syrup, aspartame (Equal, diet soda), sucralose (Splenda)


  • Spices – Soy sauce, ketchup, mustard, relish, chutney, barbecue sauce, vinegar



It is possible to control chronic pain symptoms using a rotation diet. Best of all, it is simple, and you don’t have to give up a laundry list of foods all at once to experience relief. You can eat what works for you, and you will also have the added benefit of better digestion and weight management from eating healthier foods.


Learn more about how changing your diet can help heal your chronic pain.


A Gluten-Free Diet for Chronic Pain Series – Part 5 – Scientific Proof a Gluten-Free Diet Can Put Chronic Illness Into Remission

How to Do an Elimination Diet to Solve Your Mystery Symptoms


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About Author: Jaime A. Heidel