Overcoming Challenges

Completing an elimination diet can be challenging, but there are strategies that can help individuals overcome these challenges.


It is common to experience cravings for foods that are not allowed on the elimination diet. Here are some tips on overcoming cravings while following this dietary plan:

Stay Hydrated

Sometimes, cravings can be a sign of dehydration. Ensure that you drink enough water throughout the day to keep your body well-hydrated. This can also help to reduce hunger and cravings.

Eat Regularly

Eating smaller meals and snacks at regular intervals can help keep your blood sugar stable and reduce cravings. Make sure to include a balance of protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates in each meal to maintain a feeling of fullness.

Find Healthy Substitutes

When you’re craving a specific food that’s not allowed on the elimination diet, try to find a healthier substitute that satisfies your craving. For example, if you’re craving something sweet, opt for fresh fruit or a small serving of unsweetened applesauce instead of sugary treats.

Manage Stress

Stress can trigger cravings, so it’s crucial to practice stress-management techniques like deep breathing exercises, meditation, or yoga. By managing stress, you can help reduce the likelihood of cravings.

Get Sufficient Sleep

Lack of sleep can lead to increased hunger and cravings. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night to ensure your body is well-rested and to keep cravings at bay.

Distract Yourself

When a craving hits, try to engage in an activity that distracts you from the craving, such as going for a walk, calling a friend, or engaging in a hobby. By shifting your focus, you can often wait out the craving until it subsides.

Mindful Eating

Practice mindful eating by paying attention to your hunger and satiety cues. Eat slowly and savor each bite, which can help reduce the desire for unhealthy foods and prevent overeating.

Keep a Craving Journal

When cravings strike, write down the specific food you’re craving, the time of day, and any possible triggers (e.g., stress, boredom). This can help you identify patterns and find ways to address the underlying causes of your cravings.

Seek Support

Share your cravings and struggles with friends, family, or support groups who understand the challenges of an elimination diet. They can offer encouragement, advice, and help keep you accountable.

Be Patient

Cravings can be intense during the initial phase of the elimination diet, but they often decrease over time as your body adjusts to the new eating plan. Remember that the elimination diet is temporary, and stay focused on your goals to help you stay motivated.

Social Situations

It can be difficult to navigate social situations when following an elimination diet, as many social events involve food. To overcome this challenge, try to plan ahead and bring your own food to social events. Alternatively, you can eat before you go to the event so that you are not as hungry and are less likely to be tempted to eat foods that are not allowed on the elimination diet.


The elimination diet can be time-consuming, as it requires meal planning, preparation, and cooking. To overcome this challenge, try to plan ahead and set aside time each week to prepare meals in advance. You can also try using meal delivery services or pre-made meals to save time.

Limited Food Options

The elimination diet restricts many foods, which can make it difficult to find variety in your meals. To overcome this challenge, try experimenting with new recipes and ingredients that are allowed on the elimination diet. You may be surprised by the variety of foods you can still eat.