When your digestive health is not 100% the rest of your life suffers. Having to run to the bathroom frequently, suppress gas, look like your pregnant because your bloated, lack of energy, abdominal pain and even gaining weight are all symptoms of a digestive system gone haywire. For most of us, there are very specific foods to avoid in order to stop these horrible and embarrassing symptoms.
Here are the 7 worst foods for your digestive system:
GLUTEN CONTAINING FOODS
Gluten is not good for anyone! Gluten is a by-product of grains and does not contain any nutritional value. In fact, gluten is described as the glue that holds proteins together in grains. Anything that is described as glue, cannot be good for your digestive tract!
When you eat gluten, your body has to figure out what to do with it. In some people, gluten can be broken down and absorbed. However, the grains that contain gluten have been modified so much so that they can be drought and bug resistant, the gluten is not recognizable by our bodies. The gluten we eat today has been shown to create an inflammatory response in many people, which may have led to the increase of gluten sensitivity. (Source: HuffPost)
Even if you haven't been diagnosed as allergic or sensitive to gluten, reducing your intake helps keep your digestive system healthy. Plus, there are so many alternatives in the grocery store to try it is really easy to find foods without gluten. Pastas made from cauliflower, lentils and rice are tasty and satisfying. Gluten free breads are easily found and taste good too!
In our busy lives, it can be so tempting to rely on processed foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. But processed foods, which are full of sugar, unhealthy fat, food additives and salt, hurt the digestive system. Ready to eat cereals, lunch meats, chips, cookies, frozen dinners and cakes, use additives that create inflammatory reactions.
The National Institutes of Health reports that Dr. Andrew Gewirtz has been studying the negative impact of emulsifiers and other food additives on the microbiota and promote inflammatory diseases. His group has been studying the relationships between food additives, gut bacteria, and disease in mice. The results are clear, processed foods create digestive health issues.
ANTIBIOTIC CONTAINING MEATS
Eating Well magazine reports that meats containing antibiotics can kill off good gut bacteria, allowing the bad kind to thrive in our guts, a problem that could potentially lead to antibiotic-resistant superbugs. When our good bacteria is compromised, our bodies can't fight disease and illness. Did you know almost 70% of our immune system is in our guts? If the good bacteria is killed off by antibiotic containing meat, our immune system is weakened.
Sugar in foods and drinks weaken our digestive system because it kills the good bacteria in the gut. Just like antibiotic meats. Even the sugar in alcohol can cause digestive health issues. Alcohol can inflame the stomach lining and cause diarrhea. Sugar can be represented by High Fructose Corn Syrup or refined sugar in foods. Sugar is found in a lot of foods, condiments and every day products we eat. It is important to read labels to try to avoid products with hidden sugar and to limit how much alcohol we drink daily or weekly.
You may think since sugar is bad for our digestive system, sugar-free foods would be OK. But they aren't! Sugar-free foods contain sugar substitutes which are just as bad for your gut health. Sorbitol is the most popular. The sorbitol added to sugar-free foods can lead to gas, bloating, and diarrhea. You’re better off choosing a product with a small amount of natural sugar instead. (Source: Cooking Light)
Coffee contains tannin's which are a trigger for many people to have a bowel movement. Coffee is extremely acidic and can irritate the stomach lining. In addition, the caffeine in coffee can increase diarrhea, exacerbate problems with sleep, and increase stress. How does it do this?
Coffee promotes the release of the hormone gastrin, which increases motor activity in the colon, and can also speed colon emptying by affecting the epithelial lining of the stomach and small intestine. (Source: Every Day Health) If you want to ensure a healthy gut, limiting the amount of coffee you drink or even stop drinking it altogether can be a wise choice.
Any food that is fried is hard to digest. Why? They lack fiber and either move through the body way too fast or can sit in the digestive tract without moving. Regardless of if the fried food moves through the body too fast or slow, the digestive tract has to break down and process the excess fat that the food contains. This puts a strain on the digestive tract resulting in bloating, gas, diarrhea or constipation.
Those are the 7 worst foods for your digestive health. Were any of these a surprise to you? Are there any that you eat regularly? Let me know in the comment box below.
Do you need help getting your gut health back? Does your gut stop you from going to social gatherings and events?
I'm a Certified Holistic Nutritionist helping people overcome their embarrassing and painful gut health symptoms so they can get back to living!
Book your call directly here. It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE. If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now. If it is a fit, we can take the next step and get you started on the path to healing your gut.
If you enjoyed this blog post and want to receive weekly emails with healthy living tips and recipes, click here to sign up for our email list.
You can also follow our blog on Bloglovin, in you prefer.