Nutrients | 2021
Dietary Management of Eosinophilic Esophagitis: Tailoring the Approach
Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is a unique form of non-immunoglobulin E-mediated food allergy, restricted to the esophagus, characterized by esophageal eosinophil-predominant inflammation and dysfunction. The diagnosis requires an esophago-gastroduodenoscopy with esophageal biopsies demonstrating active eosinophilic inflammation with 15 or more eosinophils/high-power field, following the exclusion of alternative causes of eosinophilia. Food allergens trigger the disease, withdairy/milk, wheat/gluten, egg, soy/legumes, and seafood the most common. Therapeutic strategies comprise dietary restrictions, proton pump inhibitors, topical corticosteroids, biologic agents, and esophageal dilation when strictures are present. However, avoidance of trigger foods remains the only option targeting the cause, and not the effect, of the disease. Because EoE relapses when treatment is withdrawn, dietary therapy offers a long-term, drug-free alternative to patients who wish to remain off drugs and still be in remission. There are currently multiple dietary management strategies to choose from, each having its specific efficacy, advantages, and disadvantages that both clinicians and patients should acknowledge. In addition, dietary regimens should be tailored around each individual patient to increase the chance of tolerability and long-term adherence. In general, liquid elemental diets devoid of antigens and elimination diets restricting causative foods are valuable options. Designing diets on the basis of food allergy skin tests results is not reliable and should be avoided. This review summarizes the most recent knowledge regarding the clinical use of dietary measures in EoE. We discussed endpoints, rationale, advantages and disadvantages, and tailoring of diets, as well as currently available dietary regimens for EoE.