I'm fascinated with new research coming to light about how our genes impact our dietary needs. I have a homozygous mutation of my CBS gene which means I have a serious intolerance to sulfur that won't get better with time - it's in my genes. The great thing about this is that I'm personally highly motivated to research how to navigate low-sulfur diets! Here's my list of foods that people like me can and cannot eat. I'll update the list as new research brings new information to light.

For people with CBS mutations, it's worth noting that proteins should be eaten in moderation until the science catches up with how sulfur and proteins works - and it's good to keep carbs on the low side, with high levels of fats. 

Lots of veggies, of course - but none of the kale / broccoli family that are so healthy for other people. 

Also the jury is out on Epsom salts - some people recommend people with CBS mutations have baths with them often, and some people say we should totally avoid them. Same goes for chlorella and spirulina. 

In short, Nobody Knows For Sure what to do about this, it's all so new, and the last time a scientific study was published evaluating sulfur levels in foods it was the 1950s, and they were evaluating stuff like Ryvitas. It's a quaint and interesting snapshot of foods that were popular at the time of the study, but it needs to be updated for today's products. 

Maybe a food manufacturer will launch a new CBS-friendly range of foods, and fund the product information on the side of the packet, thereby making it happen?

Definitely hope so - there's only so much you can do with the list below, as I'm quickly discovering! That said, if anyone can, I can, so I'm starting to create some recipes that will make this list a lot more appealing. 

More soon!

Xx Ysanne

 

FOODS that are Low in Sulfur - eat these freely!

 

VEGETABLES

Squash of all kinds - acorn, courgettes / zucchini, pumpkins, marrow, butternut, etc

Artichokes (Globe/ French)

Aubergines

Avocados

Bamboo shoots

Water chestnuts

Basil, parsley, dill, rosemary, thyme and all herbs

Carrots

Celery and celeriac

Cassava

Corn

Cucumber

Fennel

Fresh ginger root

Letttuces

Chard of all kinds - green chard, ruby chard, rainbow chard

Mushrooms of all kinds, fresh and dried

Parsnips

Sweet potato

Yams

Tomatoes

New potatoes

Endive, chicory 

Salsify

Bell peppers

 

FRUIT

Apples

Bananas

All berries (except raspberries)

All stone fruit, including cherries, peaches, apricots etc

Grapes

Figs

Melons

Oranges

Basically, most fruit is low-sulfur except passionfruit and raspberries

 

LOW SULFUR PANTRY ITEMS:

Macadamias, cashews and pecans

All seeds, except for sesame

Chia

Sesame oil (but whole sesame seeds are NOT ok)

Lard, dripping, suet and all fats - animal or plant fats are all A-OK

Full fat milk, cream and butter are all FINE

Vanilla extract

Honey and sugar

And finally, GIN is fine, as is vodka

 

PROTEINS

All fish, shellfish, meat, and organs are high in sulfur, but act low in sulfur 

Dark poultry meat is better than light meat i.e. chicken legs are lower in sulfur than the breast etc

Fatty cuts are best

Tinned sardines are better than fresh

 

 

MEDIUM in Sulfur - i.e. I can eat these in moderation

 

VEGETABLES:

BOILED cabbage

Boiled cauliflower

Boiled lentils

Radishes

Watercress

Boiled garden peas

Boiled leeks and well-cooked onions

Boiled cauliflower

Boiled asparagus

Boiled turnip tops

Boiled turnips, radishes, swede, horseradish, jicama, daikon etc

Old potatoes, boiled (meaning, standard potatoes as opposed to baby new potatoes, which I can eat freely)
 

FRUIT:

Raspberries

Passion fruit

 

PANTRY:

Almonds

Walnuts

Cooked lentils of all kinds

Dried culinary turmeric

Chocolate and carob

Oats, barley

Black tea

Beer

Apple juice if it has added sulphur, which most of them do

 

HIGH in Sulfur, to be avoided at all costs

 

HIGH-SULFUR VEGETABLES:

Brassicas, other than a few boiled ones as seen on the 'medium' list above

Alliums - all of them, except occasional cooked onions and leeks

Beans of all kinds, including beansprouts and green beans

Peas of all kinds

Arugula / roquet

Asparagus

Dandelions greens

Spinach

Bok choy

Collards

Seaweed of all kinds including carrageen 

Sunchokes i.e. Jerusalem artichokes

 

HIGH-SULFUR PANTRY ITEMS:

Peanuts and Brazil nuts

Sesame seeds - whole or tahini (but oil is ok)

All dried fruit that has added sulfur (check the label)

Quinoa 

Peas and beans of all kinds

Eggs - equally yolk and white

Meat and fish - but they seem to act like it's low sulfur for some reason I've yet to discover 

Bone broth - likewise, getting confused information about bone broth 

Cheese of all kinds from any animal - goat, sheep, cow etc 

Coffee

Green tea

Wine

Mustard of all kinds

Soy anything e.g. tofu, tempeh, soy milk, miso

Bragg’s 

Marmite and all yeast extracts

Nutritional yeast

Ground ginger

 

HIGH-SULFUR SUPPLEMENTS:

Chlorella 

Turmeric supplements

NAC

 

And finally... stuff that may be high or low sulfur, tbc

Coconut milk and coconut oil

L-Glutamine

Epsom Salts

 

I'm endeavoring to find out whether these items are good for people like me with homozygous CBS mutations  or bad for us - conflicting information about this, I'll keep looking for concrete info on these, and welcome any leads to a trusted source if you come across one! Thanks, Ysanne