Digestion Series Part 2
Trying to find the cause of bloating, gas, belly swell and stomach aches is like putting on a detective hat. If you experience any of these symptoms, I encourage you to do some food journaling so you can get to the bottom of your issues. Then try to simplify your food intake and limit your sugars. I educate people to eat foods that are low on the glycemic index (foods that will not spike your blood sugar). This is the only sustainable way to maintain weight loss that I have seen work. It’s also a way of life to prevent diabetes.
Here are some old school health foods (and seriously bad dietary info.) : dried fruit, popcorn, grain bread, baked potatoes. Let’s replace that selection with some yes foods: broccoli, apples, unsalted nuts.
Broccoli, kale, greens and spinach. While these natural vitamin enriched foods are excellent to consume, they could also be a source of aggravation for those with digestive issues. Eating raw vegetables, especially broccoli, can aggravate diverticulitis, not to mention causing indigestion and belly swell. If this happens to you, cook or steam your veggies until tender.
Fruit is excellent for constipation because of nature’s fiber. Smoothies can be great. But here’s a caution flag. I found a beautiful “hydration smoothie” on Instagram the other day. It’s made with watermelon, lemon, coconut water, passion fruit, and strawberries. Now individually, all these are wonderful, but together, this liquid drink could spike your sugar into no return!
Watermelon is high on the glycemic index, ranked at 72 out of 100. Combine that with all the other fruits, without any protein to bring down the impact of the sugar, this smoothie could lead to a sugar crash. Trying to reboot your system to get into the proper range could mean an insatiable urge to consume carbs. While we do need carbs, once a sugar crash occurs – grabbing anything to eat at this point is totally reactive. So keeping your body within a medium range is so important throughout the day.
Confused about the Glycemic Index? Here’s a quick explanation
Try some plain low fat Greek yogurt with no added sugar. It’s made with live friendly bacteria to encourage healthy gut flora. Yes, we need bad bacteria. Yogurt is known as a probiotic food which encourages gut flora to work in concert with the immune system in order to help it grow and develop, and to help fight bacterial and other infections.
- Flaxseedis a great source of essential fatty acids with natural Omega 3 and it even helps constipation and stomach pain. Sprinkle it on your cereal or mix into your yogurt or smoothies, have it with a glass of water.
- Vegetable sources of protein rather than animal sources, such as soy products, legumes- beans, garbanzos, lentils and quinoa are some excellent foods for constipation, as they are high in dietary fiber and full of nutrients.
Do you find all this information confusing? I do individualized health coaching and would be glad to work out an plan just for you. Contact me.