Salicylate Foods – sensitivity, intolerances and food list.

*Please note – this page is only a guide, the list on salicylates is forever changing and we do not update this list.  This is a simple blog as we saw a need to share some form of guide with everyone as there is minimal information out there.

Salicylates

Salicylates are organics chemicals found naturally in many herbs, vegetables, fruits, and nuts. Salicylates act like preservatives, they prevent rot and disease and protect against pests. They are stored in the most vulnerable plant parts; the leaves, bark, roots, skin and seeds.

Salicylate load and intolerance

We regularly consume salicylates and our body has to detoxify and clear away these chemicals before they accumulate. We have a threshold for symptoms. Once our salicylate load gets to around that level we start getting allergic style inflammatory reactions.

Once our load drops through avoidance and enhanced clearance the symptoms will often disappear. The symptoms will re appear if your salicylate levels creep up again. If your salicylate load is hovering around that symptom threshold than you can react every time you touch salicylate foods.

Signs and symptoms of salicylate sensitivity

  • Headaches, migraines
  • Itchy skin rashes such as hives (urticaria), eczema. Itchiness is often worse after hot shower and / or exercise
  • Irritable bowel symptoms – reflux in babies or adults, nausea, vomiting, stomach bloating and discomfort, wind, diarrhoea and/or constipation
  • Bedwetting, cystitis and increased frequency of urination
  • Asthma, sinus congestion, itching, sneezing and excessive phlegm
  • Behaviour problems such as irritability, restlessness, inattention and learning difficulties
  • Sleep disturbance  and sleep apnoea
  • Anxiety, depression, panic attacks
  • Tinnitus
  • Joint pain, inflammation and arthritis
  • Swelling and fluid retention
  • Mouth Ulcers or raw hot red rash around mouth
  • Persistent cough
  • Sore, itchy, puffy, watery or burning eyes
  • Muscle cramp, tremor, twitch
Please note: 
The Salicylate content of a particular food can vary dramatically from batch to batch. The salicylate content of a food may vary due to the following factors: season, part of plant tested (outer leaves, inner leaves, bark, skin, pulp, juice), freshness, cooked / method of cooking or raw, peeled and thickness of peeling, local variances and brand variances in farming practices and preparation, and the degree of ripeness upon harvesting. Processing techniques, preservatives, flavors and colors may all influence salicylate levels.  
This list is attempting to categorize foods containing salicylates into a risk assessment profile ranging from “negligible” to “very high” for simplicity. This list provides approximate levels of salicylates measured in mg per 100g of food. When comparing lists make sure you are comparing the same unit of measurement. Also be aware of the relevance of this unit of measurement i.e. you may be much more likely to consume a few hundred grams of berries but not likely to consume hundreds of grams of chili powder in one sitting. 

The following food lists show the approximate salicylate content per 100 grams of food or beverage.

Salicylate Foods - Vegetables

 VEGETABLES
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Bamboo shoots
Brussels sprouts
Cabbage
Celery
Chives
Choko
Beans
Peas (dried)
Leek
Lentils
Iceberg lettuce
Mungbean (and spouts)
Potato (peeled white)
Eschallots
Swedes
Soybeans
Beansprouts

Asparagus (fresh)
Beetroot (fresh)
Carrot (fresh)
Cauliflower
Corn (fresh)
French beans
Horseradish (canned)
Mushroom (fresh)
Onion
Potato (unpeeled white)
Peas (fresh)
Pimiento (canned)
Pumpkin
Spinach (frozen)
Tomato (fresh)
Turnip
Asparagus (canned)
Beetroot (canned)
Corn (canned)
Bok choy
Choy sum
Lettuce (other than iceberg)
Maize
Olives (black )
Parsley
Parsnip
Potato (red)
Pumpkin
Snow peas (and sprouts)
Sweet con
Sweet potato (yellow)
Alfalfa
Artichoke
Broad beans
Broccoli
Chili (green and yellow)
Corn (creamed)
Cucumber
Eggplant
Fava beans
Okra
Spinach (fresh)
Squash
Sweet potato (white)
Tomato (canned)
Water chestnut
Watercress
Capsicum (green)
Champignon (canned)
Chili (red)
Chicory
Courgette
Endive
Gherkin
Mushroom (canned)
Olives (green)
Pepper (sweet)
Radish
Tomato (paste and sauce)
Zucchini

Salicylate Foods - Fruits

 FRUITS
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Banana
Pear ( peeled)

Apple (golden and red delicious)
Custard apple
Fig
Cherries (sour canned, morello)
Grapes (green)
Lemon (fresh)
Mango
Pawpaw
Passion fruit
Persimmon
Pineapple juice
Pomegranate
Rhubarb
Tamarillo
Apple (Jonathon)
Apple (canned)
Grapefruit juice
Kiwi fruit
Lychee
Loquat
Nectarine (fresh)
Pear (with peel)
Plum (fresh)
Watermelon
Apple (granny smith)
Avocado (fresh)
Cherries (sweet)
Fig (dried)
Grapes (red)
Grape juice
Grape fruit
Mandarin
Mulberry
Peach (fresh and canned)
Tangelo
Apricot
Blackberries
Blueberries
Boysenberries
Cantaloupe Rockmelon
Cherries (canned sweet)
Cranberry (sauce and canned)
Currants
Dates
Grapes (fresh)
Guava
Loganberries
Orange
Pineapple
Plum (canned)
Prunes
Raisons
Raspberry
Redcurrants
Strawberries
Sultanas
Youngberry

Salicylate Foods - Nuts, Seeds, Snacks, Grains

 NUTS, SEEDS, SNACKS & GRAINS 
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Cashews
Poppy seeds
All grains (except maize)

Pecans
Peanut butter
Sesame seeds
Hazelnuts
Sunflower seeds
Potato chips (plain)
Coconut (desiccated)
Brazil nuts
Corn chips
Popcorn
Pumpkin seeds
Taco shells
Walnuts
Pine nuts
Macadamia nuts
Pistachio nuts
Almonds
Peanuts
Chips and crackers (savory flavored)

Salicylate Foods - Culinary Herbs, Spices, Seasonings and Condiments

 HERBS, SPICES, SEASONINGS & CONDIMENTS
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Garlic (fresh)
Parsley
Chives
Coriander
Salt
Vinegar (malt)
Vinegar
Soy sauce
Saffron
Tandoori spice powder
Horseradish (canned)
Vanilla
Fennel Vegemite
Vinegars (red and white wine, cider and others)
All spice
Anise seed
Cayenne
Celery
Cinnamon
Cumin
Curry powder
Dill
Fenugreek
Five spice
Garam masala
Ginger
Honey
Jam
Mace
Mint
Mixed herbs
Mustard
Oregano
Paprika (hot)
Paprika (sweet)
Pepper
Rosemary
Sage
Tarragon
Turmeric
Thyme
Worcestershire sauce

Salicylate Foods - Sweets and Sugars

 SWEETS & SUGARS
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Golden syrup
Maple syrup
White sugar
Molasses
Brown sugar
Licorice
Mints and
Peppermints
Chewing gum
Fruit flavorings

Salicylate Foods - Beverages

 BEVERAGES
NegligibleLow
0.1 – 0.25mg
Moderate
0.25 – 0.49mg
High
0.5 – 1mg
Very High
>1mg
Cocoa powder
Carob powder
Coffee ( De-caf)
Milo
Ovaltine
Chamomile tea
Vodka
Whiskey
Gin
Coffee (instant)
Rosehip tea
Fruit herbal tea
Brandy
Vermouth
Beer
Cider
Sherry
Cointreau
Tia Maria
Fruit juices
Tea (all varieties)
Liqueur
Peppermint tea
Port
Rum
Champagne
Wines
Cordials

Other Sources of Salicylates

Acne products
Air fresheners
Alka seltze
Breath mints
Bubble baths
Cleaning products
Cosmetics
Detergents
Essential oils
Fabric conditioners
Fragrances and perfumes
Hair sprays, gels and mouse
Lotions and creams
Lozenges
Mouthwash
Muscle and joint pain creams
Razor’s with aloe strips next to the blade
Shampoo and conditioners
Shaving cream
Cleansers and exfoliants
Soaps
Sunscreen and tanning lotion
After sun lotions
Toothpaste
Warts and callus removers

Salicylates may be labeled as:

Acetylsalicylic acid
Coal tar derived dye
Artificial flavorings
Artificial colorings
Azo dyes
Benzyl salicylate
Beta hydroxy acid
BHA
BHT
Choline salicylate
Ethyl salicylate
Eucalyptus oils
Isoamyl salicylate
Magnesium salicylate
Menthol
Methyl salicylate
Mint
Octylsalicylate
Oil of wintergreen
Peppermint
Phenylethyl salicylate
Red dye (#40)
Salicylaldehyde
Salicylamide
Salicylate
Salicylic acid
Sodium salicylate
Spearmint
Yellow dye (#5 and #6)

Salicylates in medications and alternative medicines

Pharmaceutical medications, herbal remedies and lotions, ointments and creams may all contain salicylates.

Your healthcare practitioner can advise you on salicylates and your prescription.

Do not change any prescribed medicines without consulting with the prescribing doctor first.

Tips for living with salicylate sensitivity

  • Thickly peel fruit and vegetables.
  • Eat fruit and vegetables as ripe as possible.
  • Discard the outer leaves.

23 replies to “Salicylate Foods – sensitivity, intolerances and food list.”

  1. Hi,
    Thank you for this chart. It is very convinient format to easily read it and the numbers are appreciated.

    Could you let us know the reference of this chart?In other charts I have read that ONION is on the high list, so I would like to know more about the source / testing of those measures.

    Thanks a lot!

  2. A fairly good list, but please be careful. I can’t imagine that pineapple juice is low in salicylates and have never seen that in my extensive research. Most fruits juices are very high and should be used sparingly. There is not a lot of actual research out there regarding salicylate content in food. Some surmise that modern fruits and vegetables have even higher contents because of being bred to repel insects. At least one study showed that cooking lowered the content in vegetables. Also, you MUST avoid aspirin and ibuprofen products. The list states you shouldn’t take medications with salicylates but most people do not know this.

  3. I just learned that I have salicylate intolerance. I researched the internet for foods containing salicylates. There are many “lists” online explaining the amount of salicylates in foods. However, lists differ greatly – with the greatest deviancy concerning salicylates in vegetables. I don’t know who to believe. Are there different methods of determining salicylates in food? Are some of the “lists” out-of-date? Can you explain this confusion? I would sincerely appreciate your input. Thank you very much.

    1. Hi,

      Most lists are a combination of data ranging from the mid 80’s through to now. It is a tricky science because the Salicylate content of a particular food can vary dramatically from batch to batch. The salicylate content of a food may vary due to the following factors: season, part of plant tested (outer leaves, inner leaves, bark, skin, pulp, juice), freshness, cooked / method of cooking or raw, peeled and thickness of peeling, local variances (an Australian list may be very different to one from the USA even though similar foods included) and brand variances in farming practices and preparation, and the degree of ripeness upon harvesting. Processing techniques, preservatives, flavors and colors may all influence salicylate levels.

      This list is attempting to categorize foods containing salicylates into a risk assessment profile ranging from “negligible” to “very high” for simplicity. This list provides approximate levels of salicylates measured in mg per 100g of food; when comparing lists make sure you are comparing the same unit of measurement. Also be aware of the relevance of this unit of measurement i.e. you may be much more likely to consume a few hundred grams of berries but not likely to consume hundreds of grams of chili powder in one sitting.

    2. Hi Eva and welcome!Your story is so simailr to most of us with fibro. It usually flares pretty bad with stress or trauma and then we spend more money than we have trying all the medications and natural remedies out there. Sorry you are going through this too! But isn’t it so great that there is hope?! Have you read the book by Dr St Amand outlining the protocol? That is the first place to go. And he even tells you what to use for nail polish remover in there! feel free to email me with your questions too, I can help you through this if you want

  4. You have pineapple in the ‘low’ & ‘high’ SO SCARY!! I had my 1st (of many) anaphylaxis eating fresh pineapple. You should be more careful!

    1. Hi,

      Thank you for your comment. I can clear up the confusion for other people with the same concern. Salicylate content of fresh pineapple and whole pineapple is much higher than commercially packaged pineapple juice tested e.g. >2mg /100g for the fresh pineapple and <0.2mg / 100g for the pineapple juice. This is why the list places the whole pineapple in the high section but the juice is in the low section. Please be aware that salicylate intolerance is very different from anaphylaxis so I am glad you understand how serious anaphylaxis can be and you are being extra careful to avoid pineapple at all doses for fear of anaphylactic shock. This list is for those people that do not need to specifically avoid a food for fear of anaphylaxis. This list is for people with salicylate intolerance and trying to reduce their salicylate load and not needing complete exclusion of the food group.

  5. I came across my problem with salicylates by pure accident whilst talking to a person who had her problem diagnosed, I stopped taking asprin which killed off the itching of my ankle rashes and I will try and adhere to your lists to stop any more rashes occurring. I found creams and ointments were pretty useless and always felt the rashes were coming from within and not from without. Thank you for your lists once again.

  6. This makes so much sense to me. My itchy skin, vomiting, bloating, especially with alcohol which I cut mostly out of my life, though it breaks down the ingredients in the liver, hence I get ill.
    I would always stay away from spices, certain frozen foods would make me throw up. I was told some of my skin itches were contact, they never went away. As a child and adult I have had sensitive skin, this information explains nearly everything symptom I have had and currently suffer with. Even eating rockmelon yesterday I had pain in the stomach.
    Thank you, I have a list that may change my life.

  7. This list is a great help to me as my 7 year old has a salicylate intolerance. For him, I find that some of the foods on the high or very high list if I buy organic are OK in small amounts every now and then. There are other foods in the high (and medium) list he can’t tolerate at all. It’s just a trial and error and also is probably different for everyone. You just have to recognise and take note (over time) the foods that give you the worst side effects. I’m sure everyone is different. Sometimes he cannot sleep at night due to the itchy skin and restlessness. I have found that half a tablet of the homeopathic remedy ‘nat phos’ helps calm the itching. I also use a moisturiser called bioskin junior by salcura which is specially formulated for eczema and severe dryness.

  8. The Australian researchers identified other food chemicals that could cause symptoms of food intolerance, including biogenic amines and added and natural glutamates. When they used this new elimination diet, nearly 90 per cent of 140 children with behaviour disturbance improved significantly, of whom nearly three quarters were sensitive to salicylates

    1. AMAZING that a study from 1985 is still the basis for most of the info on salicylates! I have been following the Feingold diet modified by this information for 40 years. Recently I was diagnosed with Sjogrens Syndrome and restless leg. I thought I was over most of the salicylate issues….well, i am going to go back to following this information and hope that I will improve my sleep and lots of the other symptoms.

    2. Can you send me the information or link on the Australian researchers. My son has autism and is affected by different foods etc.
      Thanks,
      Diana

  9. This was very helpful, I am just curious – if you buy organic, do you still have to worry about salicylates?

  10. For past two years I have ended up on antibiotics and nasal sprays on about same dates in September due to chest and nasal infection. I looked back over past two years to see if there was any major pattern / change in my diet and realized that over the last few summers we were growing and consuming a lot of Loganberries and other foods that I discovered were high in Salicylate.. I stopped taking the high volume of loganberries that I loved each morning with my breakfast and within 48 hours or less I was back to normal.

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