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9 Common Things That Can Trigger Lupus

Garlic, alfalfa sprouts, and other surprising foods

You are what you eat—and your lupus flares may reflect that. Both garlic (which contains immune-provoking substances like allicin, ajoene, and thiosulfinates) and alfalfa sprouts (thanks to the amino acid L-canavanine) can trigger flares, according to the Johns Hopkins Lupus Center.

While a direct link between lupus and most other foods isn’t clear, there are still some specific items you’ll want to avoid. For example, foods laden with saturated fats—such as fried fare, overly processed foods, red meat, and high-fat dairy products—can increase cholesterol and may lead to inflammation.

You might also want to steer clear of nightshade vegetables, such as white potatoes, tomatoes, and eggplant, since some people with lupus have reported a particular sensitivity to them.

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