master fruit list for food intolerances banner over several kinds of fruit

Master *Fruit* List for a Food Intolerance Elimination Diet — Leaky Gut, Interstitial Cystitis & Autoimmune Conditions

I may receive a commission if you purchase through links in this post. I am not a doctor; please consult your practitioner before changing your supplement or healthcare regimen.

Eliminating certain foods or food groups can help many to reach health goals. For some, specifically removing fruit allows new progress with health conditions like leaky gut, interstitial cystitis or autoimmune conditions. Those who are intolerant to fruit often need to avoid it completely, but a master fruit list is elusive and varies depending on the source. Because I put my own interstitial cystitis into remission by eliminating all fruit (read more on this here), I’ve gained insight into fruits that others may have missed. This post shares that master list if you, too, would like to eliminate all fruits to see if it helps you in your wellness journey.

A backround of several fruits with a banner that reads, Food intolerance master fruit list for autoimmune issues, interstitial cystitis, asthma, leaky gut and more

Know of a food that digests as fruit that I missed? Please feel free to share in the Comments section below the post. My Master Fruit List does not list every obvious fruit (such as pineapples and kiwi). Rather, the purpose of this list is to share lesser known fruits, foods than many of us didn’t realize digest as fruits, causing stagnation in the gut due to the genetic inability to digest this food group. I will add to this list over the years as I learn of more foods that fit this classification.

See this post to read more about fruit and interstitial cystitis specifically, as well as food intolerances’ role in IC.

Read this post to learn the difference between food intolerances, food sensitivities and food allergies. These three labels have very different definitions that can mean the difference between getting well or having a hard time making progress with one’s health challenges.

What other conditions can be reversed by eliminating fruit? I believe that list is as long as the list of illnesses. I have a friend whose daughter put her serious asthma into remission by eliminating fruit. It all depends what your food intolerance is and what your health challenge is. The first step for many is to find what your food intolerance is OR to eliminate all fruit to see if it makes a difference. Of course, being on a wellness diet at the same time is usually necessary, because the wellness diet reduces inflammation in the gut and allows healing to begin. Such wellness diets include the GAPS diet, the AIP diet, the Wahls Protocol and a well-sourced Keto diet. Less strict versions of these diets include the Paleo diet and the Weston A. Price diet. Feel free to ask any questions in the comments section below, or follow links ^^^ 🙂 in this paragraph to learn more about these options.

Secondary Food Intolerances (Combining Foods)

Keep in mind that most, if not all, patients also have a secondary food combination they are intolerant to, in addition to their one to two primary foods. For me, and many with fruit as their food intolerance, this is potatoes + grains eaten within six hours of each other. I must avoid this food combination with as much vehemence as I avoid fruit. The potato + grain combination will likely affect many of you who also can’t digest fruit, so know that potatoes and grains can come in various guises in our modern world: Potatoes masquerade under names like “vitamin A palmitate” and “Ascorbyl palmitate” in supplements. Low-fat and non-fat milk products contain vitamin A palmitate. Potato is also found in all brands of baking powder except the Rumsford brand. Most yeast contains potato, except the Red Star brand. Jicama, tapioca and cassava are all considered potato. Dextrose is usually potato; iodized salt contains dextrose.

Grains that are sneaky or subtle include flax and sesame. So if you eat flax or sesame within six hours of any potato containing food or supplement, you can trigger IC symptoms or an autoimmune flare. Other grain-containing foods include whiskey, bourbon, scotch, beer, vodka (including herbal tinctures made with vodka), rice or malt vinegar and malto-dextrin. Keep all these eliminations in mind if you wish to pursue a really clean elimination diet.

Beyond the Master Fruit List, know, too, that certain foods we call fruits actually are not. These foods are safe to eat on a fruit elimination diet: all melons including watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew etc, tomatoes, rhubarb and yacon.

Master Fruit List

Special attribution and thanks go to Dr. Jared Zeff from whom I received my original fruit intolerance list. I have added to his list over the years based on my body’s response to certain foods that I now understand to digest as fruit. My list below is, I believe, the most updated. The original food intolerance observations and discoveries came from Dr. Otis Carroll.

All obvious fruits (i.e. apples, oranges, bananas, kiwi, all berries, peaches, mango, papaya, grapes, figs, dates etc.)
All sometimes-lesser known tropical fruits (i.e. mangosteens, jackfruit, cherimoya, lychee, durian, goji berries, acai etc.)
Olives, olive oil
Palm, palm oil
Dried flowers, especially the red ones: hibiscus, rose hips
Barks, peels
Bergamot and Earl Grey tea
Allspice, cloves, mace, nutmeg, cardamom, coriander, curry powder
Sumac, garcinia
Cream of tarter
Wine and all vinegar (except rice vinegar, rhubarb vinegar or another made without fruit)
Citric acid, acetic acid and malic acid
Vitamins with bioflavonoids or citrates
Amla (Indian gooseberry), camu camu, acerola cherries, kakadu plums (all foods very high in vitamin C often used in supplements)
Schizandra (Schisandra sinensis [an adaptogen, often used in herbal blends])
Tribulus fruit, triphala, pippali, forsythia (used in herbal supplements)
Glycerin (used in herbal tinctures)
Some honeys contain fruit (this comes from the orange rind sometimes used in the honey making process to keep out small fruit flies)
White flour (which sometimes contains citric acid as a preservative)
Arrowroot starch/powder (I have only seen the evaluation done for Bob’s brand.)

master fruit list for food intolerances banner over several kinds of fruit


Interested in reading more stories about women with IC? I was interviewed for this article as one of ten women who have put IC into remission. Read the stories, and perhaps gain new insight into your cause and potentially helpful steps.

I’d love to hear your story! Have you given up fruit, or are you beginning the process?

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  1. I’m kinda confused. I thought melons were fruit (botanically speaking) and so were tomatoes. What about squash, eggplant, green beans, peppers, and peppercorn? Aren’t they botanically fruit, as well? I totally didn’t know all that about potatoes, though.

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      Raia, I understand your confusion. This classification for fruits was created by Dr. Otis Carroll based on how foods digest; so not the botanical definition. I think his discovery is more accurate, but they are both valid, given that the focus of the definitions is different.

  2. I also have stomach upset from cumin (in addition to some of those other spices – allspice and cardamom). Is cumin related to that list of spices? Or does it have anything to do with curry being on the list?

  3. Hi! Great posts!To clarify, are you suggesting that folks with IC are more likely to be sensitive to fruits or that they are more likely to have intolerances in general due to leaky gut? I’ve also heard that vit C as a supp can exacerbate? Have you had that experience?

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      Hi Brianna, Everyone has food intolerances, but those who have IC are more likely to have fruit as their food intolerance. Yes, vitamin C is fruit-based almost always, so it does trigger my symptoms.

  4. As someone with a severe potato allergy, and significant fruit intolerance, this article is so insightful. The most common reaction I get from people upon hearing I’m allergic to potatoes is, “who’s allergic to potatoes?” I think it’s more common than anyone knows.
    Again, thank you! Getting new baking powder, I had no idea!

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  5. Hi Megan. Thank you so much for this article. It’s so interesting; fruit, who knew? And I am just amazed at that list! I too will replace my baking powder! I just completed the Food Intolerance with Dr. Zeff and am waiting to hear back. This information is mind blowing! I am hoping to find the source of my IC and get better so I can sleep at night. At this point, that’s all I want…a good nights sleep. I appreciate your knowledge and sharing. Your website is a God send to me. Your articles are so interesting to read, I lose all time! I now keep a little timer by my computer to remind me!

  6. Hi,

    Thank you so much for all the information you provide. I just found out today that I am intolerant to fruit and the potato/grain combination as well. What oils do you cook with? Items such as full fat coconut milk and avocado oil/olive oil are kitchen staples for me. I am already on a dairy and gluten free diet and I feel almost claustrophobic with all the foods I cannot have. I am at this point trying to focus on what I CAN have versus the opposite. Does your cookbook have a lot of recipes that someone with my intolerances can have? Thanks again for all you do. I got my testing done by Dr. Zeff as well.

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      Hi Ashild, I’m sorry for your overwhelm and understand. Personally, I use a lot of Kerrygold butter (I’m sorry dairy is out for you for now!) and pasture-raised lard. I even use fried garlic in butter or lard with sea salt on top of my lettuce for salad dressing. (I also enjoy hulled tahini a lot on salads.) But actual oils to consider are algae: and perilla: I learned about both of these because they’re also low-lectin. You can also consider walnut oil and occasional use of toasted sesame oil. Just be aware with the potato + grain combo that the grain category includes sesame: So no perilla, tahini or sesame oil if you’re having potatoes or anything on the potato list. It DOES get easier once you get into a rhythm. Re the cookbook, do you tolerate eggs, nuts and seeds well? If so, then yes! (If not, then no.) The cookbook has little dairy, no grains, no potatoes, and limited but some fruit. I think it will provide a lot of new recipes for you, and you are welcome to email me if you need a sub for something in a recipe. You would just need to avoid the fruit recipes or sub in something else. For example, several recipes use a small amount of coconut flour. This can be replaced by chia flour, flax seed meal, tiger nut flour etc. Also, the ebook is returnable. If you find it just isn’t providing enough recipes to be worth it, you can email me, and I’ll refund you. Best wishes!

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          Hi Tara, completely off. I can have a very small amount of certain things (curry, for example) if I’m in a sunny climate and detoxing well, but day to day nothing at all. I can also handle the smallest amount of coconut oil, but I don’t eat it on purpose. I stay away from all fruit.

          1. I see 🙂 How about lemon/lime? Have you also found any correlations with oxalate/salicylate/histamine issues? Do foods high in fructans bother you?

            I’m sensitive to a lot of fruit (peeing issues) and butternut squash, sweet potatoes, lentils, and also avocados. It blew my mind when I saw avocados on this list so it makes sense that I have to find a bathroom in 20 minutes after eating guac! I’ll have urgency and it also sprays everywhere.

            I was on several ABx for a chronic UTI 2 years ago and I still have pain even though all my tests have been clear for 6 months. But now I have chronic yeast infections and mystery rashes and more food sensitivities than ever.

            Lately, the spraying has gotten much worse. It gets everywhere and makes a huge mess! Did you have anything similar when you were having fruit? I’m planning to do the OATs test soon.

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  7. I too was diagnosed by Dr. Zeff with a fruit intolerance as well as the potato/grain combo. I felt so much better after eliminating everything but have recently speculated that garlic might contribute to my IC issues. Any idea why this would be? I was also diagnosed with candida overgrowth and have begun taking a few supplements to help eradicate the yeast, but I always feel horrible taking supplements. Even probiotics make my IC symptoms worse. Any idea why this would be?

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      Hi Jenny, Garlic and probiotics can both cause fermentation in the gut for those who have SIBO. If you have small intestinal overgrowth, it would coincide with the candida overgrowth. It’s best to avoid any foods that cause bloating, for example, until you’re ready to challenge them. I don’t know which supplements you’re taking or if “feel horrible” means “die off”? Here’s a post that walks you through how to overcome candida overgrowth, expecting some die off symptoms as part of the process: An IC flare doesn’t surprise me, as symptoms often get worse when we are detoxing. You may also benefit from a Low-FODMAP diet, which will eliminate garlic for a short time: and

  8. Hi, Megan. Sorry to be bothering you again, do you have an opinion on corn, namely corn flakes? I’ve seen corn classified as a fruit, too. Many thanks!

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      Sure Jorge, no problem. The Food Intolerance concept is based on the work of Dr. Otis Carroll. Corn is not considered a fruit. I can’t speak to corn flakes because I don’t know the other ingredients or if fruit got in somehow during manufacturing (contamination). Generally speaking I do stay away from processed foods for multiple reasons. Best wishes!

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