Low Lectin Foods List
As someone who found out the power of cutting down on high-lectin foods and on lectins in general, and experienced massive benefits, one of the first things I wanted to know was which foods had lectins, and NOT have it be complicated. Honestly, I was a bit confused about the whole thing.
But... as I started having this massive success, what could have been attributed as basically OVERNIGHT success, although it was honestly about 10 days before I started getting enormous results, with benefits well before then.
Anyhow, after I started having this massive success, people were all abuzz about what I was doing. They wanted to know more. How could I have such huge results, so quickly? How could problems I was told to “deal with” (and I was, for months prior) simply go away?
A Genius Colleague Discovers Research On Lectins In Foods
I told a particularly brainy person a bit more of what I was doing. The type of person that walked around pushing their glasses up and probably owned multiple pen protectors.
After hearing more about what I was doing, he said “hmmmmm...that's interesting...”
I said something like, “yeah, I know right.” He stood there for a moment and then scuttled off.
I didn't think much of it. Until he came back no more than an hour later, telling me he had something I'd probably want to see.
So I went over to his computer, and lo and behold, he had a page FULL of information on lectins in foods.
As I saw what I was looking at, my eyes nearly popped out of my head!
He explained it was a list of foods and it had whether the lectins caused a reaction or not. The more +'s, the more likely it was to cause a reaction. And the data showed it didn't matter what blood type you are (which I had seen some info about).
I of course, needed to know exactly what this page was, and so he said, “of course.”
He sat there with that cheeky smile looking at me. “Glad I could help.”
That research which was listed on the page he had found, I am now going to share with you: research on lectins in foods
What I Found Inside About Low Lectin Foods...
I found that there were many foods that are often considered "low lectin foods" that had research on lectins in the food – and generally, they didn't have these reactions.
I also noticed foods that are often considered "high lectin foods" - they often had +'s or multiple +'s, according to the wiz kid's research, they were likely to cause a reaction.
He said, those are the ones you'd want to potentially avoid.
This also supports the idea that all foods contain lectins, so the idea of something being "lectin-free" is a contradiction.
I believe that the reason that people can have such MASSIVE results with the "lectin-free" diet is because they are essentially doing an elimination diet – where they end up removing foods they are sensitive and intolerant to.
I also believe that whether something is “high in lectins” or has lectins likely to cause a reaction is a good indicator of foods the person may have a sensitivity or intolerance to.
Here are some foods from the research that had all -'s ie didn't cause a reaction.
Sugar Apple - Annona squamosa
Dill - Anethum graveolens
Celery - Apium graveolens
Cumin - Cuminum cyminum
Fennel - Foeniculum vulgare
Anise - Pimpinella anisum
Lettuce - Lactuca sativa
Malabar spinach - Basella alba
Black mustard - Brassica nigra
Radish - Raphanus sativus
Pineapple - Ananas comosus
Tamarind - Tamarindus indica
Spinach - Spinacea oleracea
Sweet potato - Ipomoea batatas
Tapioca, cassava - Manihot esculenta
Peppermint - Mentha piperita
Spearmint - Mentha spicata
Black pepper - Piper nigrum
Finger millet - Eleusine coracana
Pearl millet - Pennisetum americanum
Lemon - Citrus limon
Tangerine, mandarin, tangelo, clementine - Citrus reticulata
Sweet orange - Citrus sinensis
What Are Low Lectin Foods?
Low lectin foods are low in the anti-nutrient lectin, which has been found to have a number of negative effects.
Some of these negative effects, as listed in the book Plant Lectins, are interference with the immune system, hyper sensitivity reactions, interference with the microbial ecology of the gut, and direct and indirect effects on systemic metabolism.
Perhaps the most popular article on lectins asked the question, "Do dietary lectins cause disease?" This at the very least, got peoples attention.
Some people find that they feel dramatically better when they cut down on their intake of lectins. Besides simply avoiding foods high in lectins, there are also other ways to lower the amount of lectins you eat. We've listed seven of those ways below.
7 Ways To Lower Lectins In Foods
There are many factors that affect the number of lectins and other anti-nutrients in foods. Here are some ways you can decrease your lectin intake, besides cutting down on certain foods that are high in the anti-nutrient.
Lectins are a natural defense against bugs and critters and have been said to be found in even higher quantities in genetically modified (GMO) foods.
Some foods are said to be genetically modified to have more lectins, which can act as a larger deterrent against bugs and animals. Ultimately, however, this also means an increased amount of intake for humans.
There are other reasons eating organic can be beneficial, although not all of them are immediately noticeable. For example, some organic foods can taste significantly better, or can have more nutrients, thus making you feel better overall. These effects are more easily noticed than some others, such as for example, ingesting a GMO food which has a pesticide with known neurotoxins.
Overall eating organic can certainly have many benefits, and the lesser amount of lectins in organic foods is just one of those potential benefits.
Sprouting, soaking, and fermenting
The processes of soaking, sprouting, and fermenting have all been shown to decrease the number of anti-nutrients and lectins in foods. Fermenting has been said to cause difficulty for some people due to histamine, and in that case they will likely want to turn to sprouting and soaking foods which has been revered as highly beneficial.
The processes of soaking and sprouting have also been touted as common practice in tribes and groups many years ago, when people were more in touch with foods and the land.
It's been said that they did so at least in part as a result of it's easier digestibility and how much better it could make them feel.
The process of soaking before cooking foods is significantly easier than sprouting. Beans, for example, are a food that is often soaked before cooking.
Sprouting is a process by which you soak the food until it begins to sprout as if it is ready to grow like a seed in the ground. This reduces the number of lectins and other anti-nutrients in the food and also increases the availability of the nutrients. You can often buy certain foods sprouted, such as sprouted rice.
Cooking & Certain Methods Of Cooking
Cooking is perhaps the most commonly known approach to lowering the amount of lectin in foods, and the amount lowered depends on several factors including the temperature and length of cooking.
Lectins in beans, for example, are very high in quantity and beans eaten raw are highly toxic unless cooked properly. Another example would be pasta.
The issue is that cooking doesn't completely wipe all of the lectins and can still have significant enough numbers to cause issues. You can combine other ways to further lower the amount like eating organic and soaking or sprouting.
Other less common methods of cooking have also been said to decrease lectin count in foods. For example, pressure cooking has been said to dramatically reduce the count, and more information on that is mentioned in the beans page.
Buying Grass-Fed and Grass-Finished Foods
Foods that are grass-fed are likely to be lower in lectins and generally speaking better for you. Lower quality meats, for example, may be fed low-quality, GMO grains, corns, etc. that are unnatural and less healthy for the animals and may cause the meat to contain lectins. Other products like butter or cheese may also be labelled grass-fed which implies that the cows are grass-fed.
You may be wondering what grass-finished means.
Grass-fed and grass-finished is a term that refers to when the animal continues to eat grass, whereas a grass-fed animal may be started on grass but then fed grains, etc. later on.
There are many benefits to eating low lectin foods since they have been found to have multiple negative attributes. They also of course contain a variety of nutrients.
Reducing lectin intake could create a very quick turn of improvement in well-being, but it's also very important what you add in, besides just what you take out.