Did you know that 1 in 5 Americans struggle with “gut disorders” (1) That means constipation, CRIPPLING stomach pain, digestive issues, and diarrhea. Many of these digestive problems go even deeper causing psychological issues like anxiety or even depression.
Going paleo is a GREAT step to heal a broken gut. Even though it can take time for an unhealthy gut to “adjust” to your new lifestyle, that won’t ever happen if you keep eating foods that are causing problems.
Did you know that there are even some “healthy” foods that can cause digestive issues and make your stomach absolutely miserable? Cutting them out of your diet for at least a month, and then adding them back in slowly, is the recipe for digestive health.
So let’s dive in. Here are 4 paleo foods (2) to AVOID if you have digestive issues:
>> 1. FODMAPs
“FODMAPs” is a fancy acronym for “Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols.” That’s quite a mouthful, but the name isn’t important. What matters is how they can wreck your digestive health.
FODMAPs (3) are a type of carbohydrate that your small intestine has trouble digesting properly. You can find FODMAPs in a lot of foods that would be healthy for you if you didn’t have digestive problems.
The solution? Stay away from these foods for at least a month:
- Fruits: apples, avocados, cherries, mangos, peaches, pears, and watermelons
- Vegetables: asparagus, artichokes, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, eggplant, garlic, and onion
After your gut heals, you can slowly add FODMAPs back into your diet and see how your digestion goes.
>> 2. Coffee and Caffeine
Coffee is great for a quick jolt of energy, but it can cause CHAOS in your digestive system. We’re talking stomach cramps, diarrhea, and constipation. Even if it doesn’t have those effects on you, it can make other digestive problems worse.
Coffee is also loaded with caffeine, which can cause digestive issue like irritable bowel disease or a leaky gut. Did you know that a ton of people with digestive issues like IBD or leaky gut ALSO have problems with their adrenal glands? Yep. Caffeine messes with those too.
Save yourself the pain and give your body time to heal. Take a “caffeine break” for 30 days and see how you feel.
>> 3. Raw Fruits and Vegetables
I know what you’re probably thinking: “Aren’t raw fruits and vegetables some of the healthiest things I can eat?”
For most people the answer is an enthusiastic “yes,” but it’s a bit more complicated if you have digestive issues.
The issue with raw fruits and vegetables: their high fiber content. When you eat fruits and vegetables RAW, they’re packed with fiber; especially when you eat them with the skin. This makes it extremely hard for your body to break them down properly.
I’m NOT saying you should avoid fruits and vegetables completely. But peeling and cooking them first makes them MUCH easier for your body to handle.
>> 4. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are some of the most popular paleo snacks around. But they’re also some of the HARDEST to digest.
They’re full of “phytic acid,” (4) which can cause a digestion nightmare if your gut hasn’t healed yet. Why? Because phytic acid binds to important minerals like iron and zinc, keeping your body from absorbing them. Phytic acid also binds to the enzymes you need to digest food.
If you’re dealing with digestion problems, eating nuts and seeds is like throwing gasoline onto the fire. They can make an already unhealthy gut even worse. Cut them out of your diet and give your body time to heal.
So, What Do I Do Next?
Your digestive system is unique. Some inflammatory foods that you handle fine bother other people. And they may eat things that throw your stomach into knots. The key: stay away from the foods above and give your gut time to adjust to a paleo lifestyle.
Ready to stop worrying about this stuff and HEAL your damaged gut for good?
We’ve teamed up with one of the most prominent chefs in the Paleo community to bring you dozens of nutritious, gourmet Paleo recipes in our new FREE cookbook.
Learn how to make gourmet dishes that don’t give your damaged gut time to heal. Gourmet dishes like Mongolian Red Pepper Beef w/ Roasted Spaghetti Squash in under 30 minutes.
After you give your gut time to heal, you can branch out and try some of the other mouth-watering dishes. It doesn’t matter if you’re busy or new to the kitchen. The cookbook breaks down how to prepare every dish step-by-step.
All you have to do is follow along and enjoy delicious food how it was meant to be enjoyed: without stomach cramps!
(1) Gut microbiota dysbiosis in functional gastrointestinal disorders: Underpinning the symptoms and pathophysiology
(2) Paleo diet: What is it and why is it so popular?
(3) FODMAP Diet: What You Need to Know
by Sally Pickle
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