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Fresh fruits, veggies, and whole grains are the backbone to good nutrition, but diving into consuming too many of those foods quickly may be hard on your digestive system. There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to eat more healthy (we promote it all of the time) but there are keys to eating healthy without sending your system into confusion. The key to incorporating healthier foods choices into your everyday diet is to simply add small amounts of fruits/veggies to the food groups you already enjoy. Love your morning yogurt? Instead of sprinkles (yeah, I’m talking to you!) try fresh strawberries instead. Or how about adding a few green beans to your dinner to make it a more “green” experience? These are just simple ideas to get you to slowly incorporate these nutritious staples into your everyday life.
It is best not to adopt a new diet of entirely fruits, veggies, and grains right away however. Sadly, the most nutrient dense foods are also product the most gas and bloating due to their compound makeup. Certain foods that contain complex carbohydrates like certain cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, bok choy, Brussels sprouts) are high in fiber, which in turn causes gas and bloating. While this can be embarrassing and annoying to some it also is doing good things for your body long term so do not fret! If you are trying to eat a high fiber diet, or are switching to a vegetarian style way of life you will most definitely feel it in your stomach.
You don’t have to suffer however, if you are trying to eat a healthier diet and don’t want to deal with the repercussions. Here are a few tips you can adopt that will keep your digestive system happy and your health on its way to greatness.
- Do not eat sugar free products as you try and get into healthier eating habits. Most of these products (if not all) contain sugar alcohols, which are poorly absorbed and digested in the body creating gas and bloating.
- Gradually ease yourself into a high fiber diet over the course of a few months (yes that long!)
- Drink as much water as you can throughout the day, and you will feel refreshed and able to digest foods better. Don’t overdo it though, as this can also pose some problems.
- The foods that give you gas and bloating, try snacking on them in smaller amounts versus eating too much of them in one sitting. These small snack amounts will get your body ready for larger amounts at a later time.
- Explore new foods with moderation!
You are on the right track, so explore these new foods with ease and appreciation! There is not a better feeling in the world than treating your body with respect by the way you eat. Enjoy those veggies, fruits, and grains but be mindful of what they can do to your digestive system if you eat too much in excess!