There is no specific lupus diet, however, two foods that are not recommended are alfalfa sprouts and garlic. These foods can stimulate the immune system and increase inflammation. Alfalfa has been known to cause lupus flares in some people, with associated muscle pain, fatigue and abnormal blood test results. Instead, people with lupus should eat a well-balanced diet with lots of green, leafy vegetables, fruits and whole grains.
Because lupus is an inflammatory disease, it has also been suggested (though not proven) that an anti-inflammatory diet might help. Omega 3 fatty acids found in oily fish like salmon, walnuts and flax seeds are particularly important in reducing inflammation, while saturated fats in red meat, fried foods and high-fat dairy products may increase inflammation.
Saturated fats should also be avoided due to their association with heart problems, as lupus increases the risk of heart disease. Some lupus medications can increase the risk of osteoporosis, so it’s important to eat foods high in calcium and vitamin D to build up bone strength.