Night shades look like a group of unrelated fruits, vegetables and spices. What they all have in common is a high alkaloid content. This makes them less desirable to bugs, like a natural pesticide. In an attempt to create a more bug resistant plant, seed manufacturers (yes seed is really manufactured these days) have increased the natural alkaloid content. This (among other things) can aggravate inflammation and increase joint pain.
Caveat time… I am not a Doctor, nor do I play one on TV. I am in no way licensed to give medical advice. I teach people how to sell stuff for a living. There are my credentials.
Back to my story…The medical community, by and large poo-poos this connection. My Rheumatologist actually rolled his eyes at me as d.id my PCP and my kidney specialist.
Here is what I can tell you… 5 years ago I could barely walk. I was diagnosed with poly-articulate gout. I had crystal shards in every joint in my body… my toes, my fingers, my hips, each vertebrae of my spine.. you get the picture. I hurt so badly that I though I must be dying. The doctor sent me home on Uloric, pain killers and a “good luck”. He also gave me the option of weekly, five hour infusion treatments to which I politely said no thanks. My Acupuncturist/ Nutritionist had me eliminate nightshades. Let me tell you, it was way more difficult than eliminating gluten or dairy. The South is tomato / potato country! I probably ate 10 servings a week.
With in a week, I felt like myself again. The pain had nearly subsided. So even though I am not a Doctor, I am a believer in the negative health effects of nightshades (for some people). If I have so much as one serving of potatoes, I am in pain for three days afterwards while it clears my system.
Back to nightshades. This is not a comprehensive list but it does represent the most common things we eat in our US diet.
-Irish Potatoes (Sweet Potatoes Are Fine)
-Bell Peppers (All Colors)
-Salad Dressings (read the label for tomato, pepper etc)
If you have joint pain or any inflammatory markers, you may want to try a 3 week elimination challenge. It changed my life. If you have issues in this regard, I encourage to find a well credentialed, holistic Doctor. Some states allow the licensing of Naturopathic Doctors. Tennessee does not so I see an Acupuncturist, Christina Woolard.