Failsafe shopping list in alphabetic order within 9 supermarket categories

Always read labels: ingredients change!

  • This list updates those in any of the Fed Up books and the Failsafe Cookbook. We try to make sure the products below are failsafe
  • Mention here is not an endorsement of any particular food or company, nor, obviously, is there any fee paid or collected. It’s here to help you.
  • Please do not use this information as a means of starting failsafe eating until you have read any one of Sue Dengate's books or seen a dietitian.
  • For recent changes and new failsafe products check the latest Failsafe Newsletter. You can subscribe to our free newsletters (email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with ‘subscribe’ in the subject line)
  • For regions and countries outside Australia, your local failsafe group may have a shopping list - see under General category.


In the list below, you can eat anything that doesn’t have a bold warning in the paragraph.

Warning ingredients may vary in the different packs of the same product e,g, Pampas frozen puff pastry in sheets is preservative-free but dispenser rolls contain preservatives; Crisco sunflower oil in large packs such as 15L contains synthetic antioxidant (320, BHA) but is BHA-free in smaller containers.

Mistakes it is important to stick strictly to your supervised elimination diet – 2 mistakes per week or a daily small mistake can be enough to stop the diet from working.

Reader report: I am about to embark on the strict elimination diet for the 3rd time, but I am trying to pinpoint what went wrong the 2nd time round - was consistently bloating but not as severely as normal - versus the 1st time round when I felt fantastic. Using your salicylate and amine mistakes information sheets and the product updates on the fed up site, I have so far picked up the following errors: Coles Pears in Syrup snackpacks (contained pear juice), Simply Wize Crusty Bread (maize flour), Dovedale Rice & Chia Bread (Chia seeds), and the wrong Cenovis multivitamin (Once Daily Women's Multi, contains evening primrose oil). Thanks for all of your help and detailed knowledge, I think I would have been doing many more things wrong in the diet without having the fed up site to look at. - Belinda, by email

You are welcome to contribute to this page - please email me on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and let me know if you want your name to appear as well. My mailing address is PO Box 718 WOOLGOOLGA NSW 2456 Australia. Note * means according to the RPAH Elimination Diet Handbook with Food & Shopping Guide 2009, available from www.allergy.net.au

Fresh fruit and veg

Fruit

All fruit except certain pears contain salicylates in varying amounts. The majority of fruits are high to very high in salicylates*. If a fruit is not listed here, don’t get excited because you think you have discovered a hitherto unknown low salicylate fruit, it is most likely to be high in salicylates.

Reader story: You actually brought tears to my eyes when l read that you don’t need fruit, vegetables are best!!!! Before l knew my problem was food, l used to eat sooo many fruits and vegetables l was sooo sick all of the time, but the sicker l got the more fruit and vegies l would eat. I know l feel better without FRUIT, it’s just lovely to have someone to talk to that doesn’t think l’m over the top! – thanks to Helen

If you think it is unhealthy to eat a low fruit diet, read the Myths of Fruit about how the food industry has distorted our thinking (‘It's a myth that fruit is packed full of vitamins and minerals ... The really sad thing is that we don't eat enough vegetables, such as cabbage ...’ ~ Prof Tom Sanders, Head of Nutritional Sciences, Kings College London): http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2008/jan/23/foodanddrink.healthandwellbeing

If concerned about nutrition, consult your dietitian (to request our list of supportive dietitians, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Vegetables

Potatoes (large white or dirty brown, peeled thickly), green beans, cabbage, celery, iceberg lettuce, leeks, shallots, chives, garlic, Brussels sprouts, swedes, chokos, red cabbage, mung bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, parsley for decoration (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates: carrots, butternut pumpkin, beetroot, sweet potatoes white or orange, asparagus, Chinese greens such as bok choy, snow peas and snow pea sprouts, fancy lettuce such as butter lettuce, fancy potatoes such as red skinned, coloured flesh or small new potatoes, corn, marrow, parsnips, turnips • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of glutamates: green peas)

FAQpotatoes

Sulphur containing vegetables Warning. Some vegetables including shallots, garlic, leeks, chives, cabbage and Brussels sprouts naturally contain sulphur compounds which double after 5 minutes of cooking. To avoid this problem, you can eat these vegetables raw, or quickly steam or stir fry. (Handbook p37)

Reader report: I was finding I was developing headaches every time I ate shallots with my homemade soup. I observed my reaction each time I added shallots, and there is this definite link. As shallots may be used by many failsafers, I just thought I would pass this info on, as I always saw shallots as a safe food. – thanks to Cheryl

 

Alphabetic list of fruit and vegetables

Apples (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates*: golden or red delicious apples)

Asparagus (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates*)

Bananas (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate amines: all bananas except the ladyfinger or sugar banana variety which also contain salicylates)

Beans, fresh green (French) or snake, Surprise dried green

Beetroot, fresh or canned no spices (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Berries, None (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate salicylates but not amines, blueberries and mulberries when ripe and sweet are listed as high only in salicylates – all other berries including strawberries, raspberries and cranberries are now listed as very high in both salicylates and amines)

Brussels sprouts, fresh or frozen

Cabbage, green (also called white), red cabbage (both listed as low in salicylates but red cabbage is slightly higher than green)`

Carrots (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Celery, use raw in salads, sandwiches and snacks or cooked in soups, stews, stir fries


 

Chinese greens, wombuk Chinese cabbage (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates, bok choy, pak choy NOT Chinese broccoli (gai Ian) high in both sals & amines or Chinese spinach kang kong, gai choy mustard greens, choy sum (very high in both sals & amines*)

Chives

Chokos also called vegetable pears or chayote, source of vitamin C and fibre, can be microwaved, steamed, sliced in soups and casseroles but best in stir fries, or see our Poko cake recipe. Can also be poached and served with ice cream and maple syrup poured over as a fruit.


 

Citrus fruit, none (oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruit, pomelos, mandarins and tangelos are all very high in salicylates and amines*)

Corn, sweetcorn, maize, canned, processed or fresh (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • now upgraded from moderate to high because of moderate salicylates plus glutamates • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates and glutamates, corn and all other corn products except cornflour - fresh, canned, cornmeal, polenta, cornflakes and other corn containing cereals, popcorn, corn oil)

Custard apples (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Garlic

Green beans, snake beans, fresh or frozen e.g. Birds Eye

Leeks


 

Lettuce, Iceberg, avoid dark green outer leaves which are higher in salicylates. (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates: fancy lettuce such as butter lettuce) Internet rumours that Iceberg lettuce represents inferior nutrition are not true, Iceberg lettuce contains the same nutrients but more water which is why it is so crisp. To get the same nutrition, you need a larger serve, which is what people do with Iceberg – it is eaten in much larger amounts than any other lettuce variety.


 

Mangoes formerly moderate in salicylates have been upgraded to High (contain both salicylates and amines* Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet) RPA advise that people who are already managing foods formerly listed as moderate in their diets can continue to eat them.

• Mango products: UFC canned mango slices in syrup and frozen mango pulp may be suitable for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates and amines e.g. as flavouring in home made ice cream (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet)

• dried mango, mango yoghurt, mango smoothies and commercial mango ice cream, None which could be very high in salicylates because salicylates are concentrated in dried fruit, jams and syrups used for flavouring.

Marrow (vegetable), also called squash (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate moderate salicylates) This group includes zucchini if peeled and butternut pumpkin but not other pumpkins which are now rated as High in salicylates.


 

Melons, None. Watermelons, honeydew melons and rockmelons also known as canteloupes, and are all listed as high in salicylates (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate salicylates)

Mung bean sprouts (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates: snow peas and snow pea sprouts)

Parsley, for decoration only; upgraded to High in salicylates in the 2009 Handbook (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Parsnips (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Pawpaw, papaya (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate moderate amounts of amines)

Pears fresh (soft, ripe, peeled, pearshaped varieties such as Williams, Bartlett, Packham and Beurre Bosc, not apple-shaped varieties such as Nashi or Ya),


 

Peas, green fresh, no mint (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of glutamates)

Persimmons (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

potatoblog

Potatoes (large white or dirty brown; peeled thickly; do not eat potatoes that have green in the skin) (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates: fancy potatoes such as red skinned, coloured flesh or small new potatoes) see blog post

Pretzels e.g. Parkers Baked Wheat Pretzel Twists

Pumpkin, butternut (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate moderate salicylates; other pumpkins are now listed as high in salicylates*)

Rhubarb (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates; although listed as high in salicylates, rhubarb is also mentioned as one of the best fruits to eat for people who are sensitive to salicylates and can manage something more than low salicylates*)

Shallots, also called spring onions or scallions, with a thin, undeveloped bulb see photo


Snow peas (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Sprouts, mungbean only (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates: snow peas and snow pea sprouts)

Swedes also called rutabaga or yellow turnips. Popular in Sweden where they are often served mashed with potato and butter. The perception of bitterness in these vegetables is gene-related, meaning that a few people with a particular gene (PAV/PAV) may find swedes so bitter as to be inedible.


 

Sweet potatoes, white or orange (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Tamarillos (Not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

Turnip, yellow turnips also called swede and rutabaga are failsafe (white turnips are not suitable for your supervised elimination diet • for people who can tolerate limited amounts of salicylates)

update September 2016