From the Desk of Dr. Len
Food Combining for Digestive Ailments
Dr. Len Lopez – Monday, December 02, 2013
If you struggle with bloating, heartburn, reflux or other irritable bowel problems you need to look at Food Combining. Think of Food Combining like mixing and matching your wardrobe. Some shirts and pants look great together, while other combinations are simply wrong.
A poorly combined meal is harder to digest and can further inflame your tummy. So the goal of food combining is to create a meal that is easier to digest. Keep in mind that a healthy functioning digestive system should be able to digest pretty much anything.
The simple rules of Food Combining to understand are
Some foods are easier to digest than others. Proteins and fats can take 2-4 hours to digest, while fruits and vegetable can take less than an hour.
Proteins (chicken, fish, meats, eggs, milk, etc.) need an acidic environment in order to be broken down. Without enough hydrochloric acid (HCL) you don’t breakdown protein and the undigested protein begins to rot and putrefy in your tummy. This triggers digestive problems.
Starches (beans, rice, potatoes, etc.) require a more alkaline medium for digestion. When you eat a protein and starch (steak and potato, chicken and rice, shrimp pasta, etc.) you dilute the acidity needed to breakdown the protein in your meal, which doesn’t allow for complete digestion. Therefore Don’t eat Proteins and Starches together.
FYI….A classic sign you aren’t making enough HCL is that you get bloated and gassy soon after a protein rich meal. Most digestive problems are because we don’t have enough HCL….not too much! If you eat on the run, in the car, in a hurry, etc…you are not giving your digestive system a chance to make that important HCL. This is why a good digestive enzyme with HCL is important to add to your nutrition protocol.
Eat proteins and fibrous (avocadoes, broccoli, asperageus, etc.) vegetables and salads together.
Eat fruits by themselves. Don’t combine fruits and proteins (smoothies and shakes). The sugar in fruits digest rapidly and begin to ferment in the stomach as they wait up to 4 hours for the protein to be digested. The fermented sugars aggravate your digestive process, contributing to leaky gut, irritable bowel, and not helpful for anyone dealing with yeast, fungal over-growth or candida.
If you eat dessert, which is probably loaded with simple sugars…it would be best to wait a couple of hours and than really dig into it.
Drink only a few ounces of liquid with your meal. A 16-24 ounce ‘anything’ will dilute the digestive juices needed to breakdown your food.
Stay away from ice cold drinks when you eat. The cold inhibits the release of those digestive juices and HCL.
It’s not you are what you eat – it’s you are what your body absorbs and can’t eliminate! How do you expect to strengthen and nourish your body if every time you eat your stomach gets irritated and inflamed? Test Your Digestive System and see if that is the health challenge you need help with.
Antacids or acid blocking medications Do Not Address the Cause…they ONLY address the symptoms. So if you are dealing with a health issue that is not getting any better, maybe you need to address the real underlying cause to your problem.