What Diet is Good for Digestive Problems – Several Types and Precautions

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Digestive Problems are a preliminary indication of severe diseases like gastric cancer and ulcers. Diet has a significant role in recovery of gastro-intestinal disorders. Cassia (Cinnamon), Pomegranate Seed, Tangerine Fruit, Ginger Root, Chinese Cardamom, Black Pepper Fruit, De-Glycyrrhizinated Licroice Root (DGL), Lesser Galangal Root are some of the natural digestive aids for stomach indigestion.

There are some added advantages of using these common ingredients in your diet. Bile secretion is supported by Cassia, which is very useful in absorption of fats and fat-soluble vitamins in the small intestine. Cramping and gas can be relieved using Tangerine. Lot of research has shown that its flavonoids support good functioning of the liver.

[Source: http://comfortspringstation.tumblr.com/post/62057295767/natural-digestive-aids-cassia-cinnamon]

Ginger root with honey is a very good medical substitute for gastric disorders. It is used as an anti-flatulent, laxative and antacid. It supports free intestinal movement and fights nausea. DGL is used as a long term medicine for better digestive functions in Europe and Asia.

diet for digestive problems

Fruits for Digestive Problems

The list of fruits can be categorized as under –

  1. Sub-acid fruits

  2.  Melons

  3. Acid Fruits

  4. Sweet Fruits

There is a particular way of how to eat fruits for good digestion. Generally, Fruits when taken alone as an entire meal, give good benefits and relief to digestive problems.

Warning: Fruits should not be taken with other foods and drinks like alcohol, coffee, tea and some vegetables. Otherwise, they will be detained in the stomach and will give rise to fermentation.

List of Sub-Acid Fruits

  • Apple
  • Apricot
  • Berries
  • Cherimoya
  • Cherry
  • Most Grapes
  • Mango
  • Nectarine
  • Peach
  • Pear
  • Plum

List of Melons

  • Canary
  • Cantaloupe
  • Casaba
  • Christmas
  • Crenshaw
  • Honeydew
  • Muskmelon
  • Persian
  • Watermelon

List of Acid Fruits

  • Grapefruit
  • Kiwi
  • Kumquat
  • Lemon
  • Lime
  • Orange
  • Pineapple
  • Pomegranate
  • Strawberry
  • Tomato

List of Sweet Fruits

  • Bananas
  • Dates
  • Dried Fruits
  • Fresh Figs
  • Muscat Grapes
  • Thompson Grapes
  • Papaya
  • Persimmon
  • Sapote

There are certain combinations which you should avoid when taking fruits for better digestion. Acid fruits and Nuts and Cheese are a good mix, as the high fat content of nuts and cheeses acts like a separate meal from the acid fruits. This causes the digestive system to work more slowly.

Acid Fruits and Sweet Fruits should not be taken together. This combination delays the digestion of sweet fruits and can increase the level of sugar, if you are a diabetic.

Melons are to be eaten separately from other fruits. This is because they decompose much faster than other fruits and increase the sugar levels very soon and also create a system of quick digestion. This may result in hunger very soon, if this happens.

Sub-Acid fruits can be combined with Acid fruits and also Sweet fruits and their effect on digestion is fair. So not much harm is done is they are mixed together, but taking in huge quantities can result in gastric problems.

Avocados work best when taken with non-starchy vegetables. They work fairly well with acid fruits and starches. But these should not be taken with sweet fruits or protein.

[Source : http://positivemed.com/2014/10/16/10-incompatible-food-combinations/]

list of fruits and vegetables - good for digestion

Some of the common fruits which ease digestive problems are –

  1. Cherry
  2. Watermelon
  3. Oranges
  4. Strawberries
  5. Bananas
  6. Mangos
  7. Kiwi
  8. Apples
  9. Blueberries
  10. Pineapple

Each fruit has its own advantages for the better well-being of a gastric patient. Cherries calm your nervous system. Watermelon helps you maintain a normal heart-rate. Strawberries can inhibit cancer and ageing. Bananas give you better energy and stamina, which is why most athletes and sports persons take them in the middle.

Nutrition for digestive problems

The common types of digestive disorders are IBS, Crohn’s disease, Diarrhoea, Constipation etc. There is a great degree of conflicting data of what to eat and what not to eat when you have these digestive problems. People with gastric complains know the pain of having a “wrong diet” and the happiness when the “right diet” works.

It is highly difficult to say which works for which patient. A good diet for one person, may not work well for the other. For example, a vegetarian diet may be suitable for particular group of people. But the same diet can cause irritation and suffering like bloating and flatulence to some.

It is always advisable to go to a qualified nutritionist, who can feel the relationship between food and digestive problems. With personalized meal plans tailored to individual needs and requirements, a nutritionist can greatly improve the day-to-day life of a patient suffering from digestive problems.

the effect of diet on digestion problems

Some people with digestive disorders find problems after eating certain foods. Using trial-and-error make a note of foods, which are causing “pain” and which are helping “ease” your stomach. Be sure to consult a health professional, if you have the following symptoms.

  • Constant nausea or vomiting
  • Sudden weight loss or weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Blood in your stool

Also there are some “red flay symptoms” which indicate severe digestive problems.

  1. Did you notice any sudden and serious change in the functioning of your bowels?
  2. Did you lose weight recently for no reason?
  3. Do you have trouble swallowing food or liquid?
  4. Did you notice any increase in heart burn or stomach pain?
  5. Did you notice any bleeding from your back passage?

In that case, you should immediately consult your health-care provider.

Liquid diet for Digestive problems

When most gastric patients hear about “liquid diet” they understand that these are the common foods found in the grocery store, but are either in liquid form or in a state that forms a liquid like – juices, soups, Jell-O, meal supplemental drinks etc.

There are some conditions when you should take a liquid diet. But generally, a liquid diet gives way for an inflamed bowel to rest and heal. It will reduce bowel movements and help gastric patients who go to the toilet 25 to 35 times daily.

There is different lingo of liquid diet according to different medical sciences.

A standard liquid diet is useful for people who need temporary relief to their digestive system. It can be used for patients who are suffering from vomiting or diarrhea or as a starting point to eating solid food. It is also suggested in a hospital, who have had a surgery etc.

Another form called the elemental liquid diet is a source of strength that consists of protein, easily digestible vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and small amounts of fats.

when liquid diet helps digestions

There are another two forms – clear liquid diet and full liquid diet.

The clear liquid diet consists of water, tea, fruit juices (without pulp), clear broth, bouillon, clear sodas, coffee (no cream) etc. You can clearly see through this type of liquid diet. This is generally given before a surgery to make sure your digestive tract is empty. It is helpful in maintaining vital fluids, salts and minerals, while providing some energy. It should not be taken for more than 2-3 days.

A full liquid diet consists of soups (broth, bouillon), drinks (vegetable juices, fruit juices, milk, milkshakes, coffee, tea, water), other (fat-free yogurt, ice-cream, sugar, honey, syrup, cream, potatoes pureed in soup) etc. This is a step between solid and clear liquid diet.

This is generally used after certain types of surgery, if you have certain digestive problems. The calorie value of full liquid diet is between 1400 and 1500 calories and 45 grams of protein per day. The full liquid diet is given for short period of time.

how liquid diet helps digestion problems

Sources:

Vegetarian diet for Digestive problems

Just eating a vegan/vegetarian diet will NOT solve your digestive problems. There is a system way of taking the veg diet. In most of the vegetarian diets there is avoidance of meat such as chicken, beef and pork.

According to LiveStrong.com, vegetarian diets primarily consists of fruits, vegetables and whole grains such as whole wheat bread and brown rice. The protein-rich portion of the vegetarian diet is supplemented by lentils, beans, nuts and seeds. Some additional substitutes like textured vegetable protein and soy burgers are also allowed.

Majority of the veg diet comes from carbohydrates like bread, rice and pasta which can be digested very quickly. Vegetarian diets are also rich in dietary fiber. They provide rich health benefits like lowering diabetes and diverticulitis dangers. Whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds and lentils are all high in fiber.

what fruits and vegetables good for digestion problems

Warning: In the vegan diet, there consists of soluble and insoluble fiber. Different patients react differently to this fiber type of diet. Generally, diet high in fiber can improve digestion and prevent constipation. But some patients face digestion problems, if they are not used to fiber. The Harvard School of Public Health advises drinking plenty of water (like 4 to 5 litres) throughout the day to help soluble fiber dissolve and stop stomach cramping.

Sources:

There are some “problematic” issues in a vegan diet.

Not eating meat, pork etc. does not indicate that there is a problem with particular food group but indicates imbalances within the body. This can cause weaker digestive function like slowed metabolism and sluggish thyroid function.

the importance of vegan diet and its cons

Source : dailyburn.com

Another disadvantage with vegan diet is that they are low in high-quality protein. To counter-attack this, processed plant proteins (protein powders and meat substitutes) are commonly used, which contribute nutritional deficiencies. Also, in a recent study it is found that vegetarians have lower sperm count and mobility.

Low protein diets can also increase toxicity. Also, plant-based diets can decrease digestive juices. Sometimes, the negative effects of vegetarian diet can be seen slowly. Since your body will exhaust the “nutritional package” in your body, it can be many years to find that nutritional deficiencies can cause impaired detoxification, thyroid issues and/or harmonal imbalance.

Bland Diet for Digestive problems

A bland diet is a special type of diet where it consists of foods that are generally soft, low in dietary fiber, cooked rather than raw and not spicy. Some foods like fried and fatty, strong cheeses, whole grains (rich in fiber) and medications like aspirin and ibuprofen are also not taken in this diet.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bland_diet

A bland diet can be helpful after stomach or intestinal surgery.

bland diet - what it is and how it helps digestion

Source: hubpages.com

Foods for Bland Diet

  • Milk and other dairy products, low-fat or fat-free only
  • Cooked, canned, or frozen vegetables
  • Fruit juices and vegetable juices (some people, especially those withGERD, may want to avoid citrus)
  • Breads, crackers, and pasta made with refined white flour
  • Refined, hot cereals, such as Cream of Wheat (farina cereal)
  • Lean, tender meats, such as poultry, whitefish, and shellfish that are steamed, baked, or grilled with no added fat
  • Creamy peanut butter
  • Pudding and custard
  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • Soup, especially broth
  • Weak tea

Source : https://medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000068.htm

Foods to Avoid when you have Digestive Problems

  1. Dairy products
  2. Spicy foods
  3. Acidic foods
  4. Fatty foods
  5. Fried Foods
  6. Processed Foods
  7. Artificial Sweetener
  8. Alcohol
  9. Caffeine
  10. Sweet or Salty
  11. Spoiled Foods.

Sources: http://www.everydayhealth.com/digestion-photos/foods-to-avoid-during-digestive-problems.aspx#12

Paleo Diet for Digestive problems

A Paleo diet is based on the types of foods assumed to be haven eaten by early humans, consisting chiefly of meat, fish, vegetables, and fruit and excluding dairy or cereal products and processed food.  The health benefits of a paleo diet are not just for digestive problems. They include –

  • More efficient workouts
  • Stable blood sugar.
  • Burn of stored fat
  • Reduced allergies
  • Balanced energy throughout the day
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Clear skin and better teeth
  • Improved sleep patterns

Sources:

A paleo diet should be good in fat, medium in animal protein and low to moderate in carbohydrates. Saturated fats like coconut oil and butter or clarified butter are also good. Beef tallow, lard and duck fat coming from well-treated animals are also good. Olive, avocado and macadamia oil are good fats to use in salads, but not in cooking.

what is paleo diet and when you should use it

[Source: recapo.com]

Also eat good amounts of animal protein. This includes red meat, poultry, pork, eggs, organs (liver, kidney, heart etc) , wild caught fish and shellfish. Eat good amounts of fresh or frozen vegetables. Eat fruits and nuts on medium note. If you are having digestive problems, then try cutting of fruits and nuts altogether.

Source : http://paleoleap.com/paleo-101/

Always prefer pasture-raised and grass-fed meat from local and eco-friendly farms. Avoid cereal grains and legumes from your diet. These are like wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, brown rice etc. Stop taking vegetable, hydrogenated and partly-hydrogenated oils like margarine, soybean oil, corn oil, peanut oil, canola oil etc.

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Comments

  • K. Sai Ramana
    September 15, 2016

    I am facing severe gastric trouble. Please advise the diet.

    • September 15, 2016

      @K. Sai Ramana: Are you Telugu too? Just asking. BTW, for relief from gastric trouble, you should consider what diet to avoid than what to eat first. For example, spices, dals, alcohol, sourness etc. stimulate gastritis. So better be off it. Also avoid lactose(diary products), sorbitol, fried foods and caffeine etc. First make a meal plan. You can also read my article on foods for gastric problems. http://www.healthdummy.org/34/foods-for-gastric-problems.html