Digestive complications do not appear out of thin air. There is a certain factor that is causing the digestive ailments to arise. Some of the most common reasons for an unstable digestive system include a poor diet, a sedentary lifestyle, and/or a leaky gut. However, there are tons of other factors that can negatively contribute to a weak digestive system, and identifying those factors is the first step in combating them once and for all.
People tend to overlook food sensitivities and food intolerances, but these can be very impactful on your digestive health. Let’s explore common food intolerances, how best to identify your food sensitivities, and foods to avoid in general for a healthy digestive system.
Common Food Intolerances and Sensitivities to Look Out For
Food intolerances and sensitivities relate to foods that create an adverse reaction in your body and tend to create digestive complications such as bloating, constipation, and abdominal pain. However, it is important to note that food intolerances/sensitivities are not the same as being allergic to a certain food. When someone has a food allergy, that triggers a response from a person’s immune system, whereas with food intolerances/sensitivities the immune system is not triggered. While the symptoms for both can manifest in similar ways, ultimately, a food allergy can cause a severe allergic reaction unlike with a food intolerance.
Here are some of the most common food intolerances:
Lactose is a sugar that can be found in dairy products. When someone has an intolerance to lactose, it is likely that their body does not produce enough of the enzyme called lactase. Lactase is a digestive enzyme needed to break down the lactose when it enters the body, so low amounts can trigger digestive complications. People who are lactose intolerant tend to experience an upset stomach, irregular bowel movements, and bloating after consuming foods containing lactose.
Gluten can be found in foods such as pasta, bread, granola, and many sweet treats. When a person is sensitive to gluten, eating these foods can cause them to experience digestive issues such as severe bloating, brain fog, and diarrhea. Celiac disease is the autoimmune response to gluten filled foods, and should not be considered the same as a gluten sensitivity. Where gluten sensitivity will simply manifest with adverse symptoms, in the long run, celiac disease can have a more intense response even leading to damage to other parts of a person’s health.
Factors such as age, genetics, and the liver’s ability to process caffeine can all contribute to a caffeine sensitivity. Caffeine sensitivity will likely cause issues such as jitters, difficulty breathing, headaches, and anxiety. It can also cause an upset stomach. Be sure to keep an eye on your caffeine intake and your body’s reaction to said caffeine.
How To Identify Your Food Sensitivities For A Healthier Digestive Process
Given that we eat several different types of foods a day, it can be hard to identify whether or not you have a food sensitivity. Here is a 3-step process on how best to identify the foods that are potentially causing adverse issues.
Foods to Limit In Your Diet To Avoid Digestive Complications
While each person’s body reacts differently to a variety of foods, there are certain foods that tend to negatively impact most people’s digestive process.
Fried foods high in fat
We all know how delicious a basket of fries and chicken strips are, but did you know that fried and fatty foods can cause a load of digestive complications? The high-fat content causes a person’s digestive system to slow down which can lead to bloating, constipation, and irregular bowel movements. Fried and fatty foods also tend to cause a decline in energy.
Due to their high-fiber content, beans can cause gas and bloating to occur. Fiber in and of itself is very beneficial for digestion, but too much fiber can have the opposite effect. Be sure to take note of how much fiber you are consuming, and how your body reacts to certain beans.
There is nothing quite like a cold and crisp soda on a hot day, but beware of its potential adverse effects! The carbonation in soda and other carbonated beverages causes air to increase in our system leading to more gas and bloating.
We know how hard it can be to eliminate these foods and beverages from your diet. However, we do encourage moderation and a bloating supplement regime to better support your overall health. Vitamins that help with bloating such as a probiotic supplement and digestive enzyme supplement can be your best friend when trying to tackle digestive ailments once and for all.