FODMAP Diet for IBS

Digestive Distress Diet

Digestive complaints are among the most common health concerns. If you’re experiencing distress, Dr.Myra Reed will evaluate the foods and substances you are eating to identify where a reaction exists. There are many ways to conduct a dietary analysis, including food diary, food allergy testing, muscle testing, and elimination diets. The FODMAP Diet is often recommended by healthcare practitioners.

What is a FODMAP?

FODMAP stands for fermentableoligo-, di-, mono-saccharides and polyols. This scientific term is used to identify groups of carbohydrates – also known as “fermentable carbs” – that trigger digestive problems such as bloating, gas, abdominal pain, constipation, or diarrhea.

FODMAPS in Food?

You will find FODMAPS in a variety of foods:

  • Oligosaccharides: in wheat, rye, legumes, garlic and onions.
  • Disaccharides: in milk, yogurt and soft cheese. Lactose (milk sugar) is the main carb culprit.
  • Monosaccharides: in many different fruits, including fig and mango, and sweeteners such as honey and agave nectar. Fructose (fruit sugar) is the main carb culprit.
  • Polyols: in blackberries and lychee, as well as some low-calorie sweeteners like those in sugar-free gum.

Why the Low-FODMAP Diet?

Research and clinical experience demonstrate that following a diet low in fermentable carbs reduces digestive distress, improves enjoyment of eating, and supports gut health by promoting the growth of good gut bacteria.

Starting a Low-FODMAP Diet

There are several stages, briefly outlined here:

Stage 1: Restriction of high-FODMAP foods. This involves strict avoidance of foods that have been identified or are suspected to be irritants to the digestive system. This stage lasts eight weeks for most people. You will record food intake and monitor symptoms and health variables, which you will discuss with your doctor/ nutritionist.

Stage 2: Reintroduction. You systematically reintroduce high-FODMAP foods to learn which ones you can tolerate and in what amount, or if you are sensitive to several/ all FODMAPS.

Stage 3: Personalization. With the data collected in the first two stages, you and  Dr. Myra will establish a personalized low-FODMAP diet. You will progress over time to ensure you have a diet that is flexible, manageable, and provides a variety of nutrients and flavors.Remember: check with Dr Myra Reed before you try adopting this diet because it has to be customized to your specific food intolerances/ allergies.

References

Fermented Foods

You can support your gut health with fermented, nutrient-potent foods. Ranging from tangy to bitterly-sweet in flavor, these foods originated decades ago in the cultures of Japan, China, India, and Germany.
Fermenting imbues foods with the health-enhancing properties of live bacteria, providing an ample source of probiotics, which are essential to a strong digestive tract. Probiotics help build up antibodies to pathogens and provide for a strong “gut immunity” which is key to maintaining overall vibrant health.
Fermented Foods Short List

  • Cultured Dairy: Yogurt, kefir, buttermilk, sour cream, and some cheeses
  • Veggies: Beets, radishes, tomatoes, onions, garlic, kimchi, green beans, sauerkraut
  • Condiments fermented at home or commercially: ketchup, relish, salsa, chutney
  • Other: Miso, tempeh, tofu, soy sauce, and kombucha (check that sugar content is not high on any pre-packaged or bottled fermented food).

Tips for Choosing & Storing Fermented Food

  1. Food labels must be marked “fermented.”
  2. Fermented and “pasteurized” do not go together. Pasteurization kills live cultures.
  3. Pickled is not the same as fermented (unless indicated on the label). Pickled foods are soaked in vinegar or brine.
  4. Choose organic, non-GMO items or locally farmed products.
  5. All fermented foods must be kept cool to maintain the live cultures.

Adding Fermented Foods to Your Daily Diet

When introducing fermented foods to your daily diet, start with small servings such as 1-2x a day. A few easy ways to sneak in fermented foods: Toss fermented veggies into salads or rice dishes. Enjoy fermented food as a snack or as a side dish (e.g., beets, tempeh, kimchi). Add a spoonful of a fermented food to your morning smoothie (e.g., beets, kefir)

.References

Fermented foods not your thing?

An alternative to fermented foods are quality probiotics and prebiotics in tablet, capsule and powder forms. Our office has researched the most effective probiotics tailored to specific needs like weight loss, women’s genitourinary health, detoxification, and brain support such as mood disorders.  Though we carry many quality refrigerated brands, not all types need to be refrigerated. Talk to our team about which product suits you best. 

  You can also order these pure products from Klaire Labs 1-888-488-2488  code W-11
Order supplements


Fermented Vegetable Medley

When you hunger for something tangy, nutritionally potent, and full of beneficial bacteria to help heal an aggravated digestive tract, fermented veggies are a wonderful option. They’re a great side to any meal (vegan or carnivore) and can be added to a hearty stews. This recipe gives you a variety of options, with a focus on veggies that are least likely to irritate those with sensitive digestion.

Equipment Needed for Preparation & Storage

  • 1-gallon or 4-liter glass, enameled or clay jar which will be your fermentation jar
  • 1 small plate that fits into the fermentation jar
  • 1 small glass jar, filled with water

Ingredients 

  • 1 head of red cabbage, roughly cut
  • 1 medium-size beetroot, sliced
  • Handful of garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 T of sea salt
  • 1 t. dill seeds or dill herb (fresh or dry)

Personal Choice of Additional veggies & herbs: carrots, bell pepper, fennel, parsnip, radish, shredded broccoli, etc.

Preparation 

  • Combine all the vegetables and herbs and put them into the fermentation jar. The amount of vegetables should not go beyond the half-way mark on the jar.
  • Fill the rest of the jar with filtered water and add salt.
  • Float the small plate on top and submerge it with the small jar (filled with water to keep it down). This way the vegetables won’t float to the top and get moldy.
  • Leave to ferment for 1-2 weeks at room temperature.
  • You will know the medley is ready when the vegetables are soft and tangy.
  • To stop the fermentation process, transfer the medley to smaller jars and keep them in the fridge; they keep well for weeks.

References

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Digestive Distress: Holistic Approaches to Irritable Bowel Syndrome

When the smooth rhythm of the muscles of the digestive tract is disrupted, either moving too quickly or too slowly, we experience digestive distress. For some of us, this distress can be frequent and painful, creating a major disruption in our life and in our lifestyle.
Several health conditions are marked by severe digestive distress including ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). While all of these conditions involve inflammation of the lining of the bowel, IBS can be healed through careful shifts in diet and lifestyle.
What is IBS?IBS is marked by abdominal pain, changes in bowel habits, and a cluster of symptoms that last for three months or longer. Symptoms vary for each person and can include:

  • Stomach gas and bloating
  • Alternating diarrhea and constipation
  • Mucus in the stool
  • Nausea after eating
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Abdominal pain that progresses or occurs at night
  • Weight loss not explained by dieting or other health concerns

IBS can be caused by one or several underlying health factors that cause a disruption in the digestive tract. These factors can include:
   Food Allergy or Sensitivity. Research has shown that IBS can be triggered or made worse in people who are consuming foods to which they have a food allergy, intolerance or sensitivity. For some people a specific category of carbohydrate foods known as “high-FODMAP” create symptoms of IBS. For a list of food culprits, read the article below and see how you can help determine what is causing your distress.
  Imbalance in Gut Flora. In the digestive system, we have friendly gut flora that support the process of digestion, nutrient absorption, and immunity. If we don’t have enough friendly flora, or there is an overgrowth of unfriendly flora, or an “invader” yeast or bacteria, then inflammation, nutritional deficiency, and digestive distress can result. Toxins, processed foods, stress and antibiotic use can also increase inflammation and trigger or worsen IBS.
  Hormones. Changes in hormones, particularly for women, can cause a cascade of changes in the body, including digestion. Dr Myra Reed has many years of experience in bio-identical hormone treatment and replacement.  Please email  info@drmyrareed.com or call our clinic  850-249-5000 for more information, especially if interested in hormone pellets. Pellets are easy to replace and give a steady natural release of testosterone over time without the hassle or inconvenience of topical, oral or shots. 
A Holistic Plan for Healing IBSDr. Myra Reed assess for IBS using diagnostic tools such as physical exam, lab tests, stool and urine tests, food allergy or intolerance testing, dietary assessment, and assessment of lifestyle factors including stress level, fatigue, etc. The goal is to identify sources of inflammation that have set the stage for developing IBS. Once identified, Dr Myra and you, the patient, along with our health coach, Abby Pease, will develop a plan to minimize/ eliminate exposure to triggers, reduce inflammation, and promote healing.
The “healing plan” for IBS will be different for every person because so many factors interact to produce inflammation and symptoms. This plan can include following a Low-FODMAP or elimination Diet (useful for a variety of GI conditions), nutritional and herbal supplementation, stress management, avoiding smoking and caffeine, moderating alcohol intake, adjusting sleeping habits and exercise.
 If you suspect that you are affected by IBS, contact Dr Myra Reed about an evaluation and put yourself on the road to wellness. It is possible to enjoy food again and heal from Irritable Bowel Syndrome by getting to the root cause.

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Antibiotic Resistance

Take A Holistic Approach to Antibiotic Resistance

When it comes to our health, there are two schools of thought: the Germ Theory and the Terrain Theory. Understanding the differences is critical, particularly because it involves the use of antibiotics, which should be used sparingly and for the right reasons. So let’s examine this often confusing topic.
The Germ Theory asserts that, regardless of the state of our health, germs that can cause disease will, indeed, cause disease. That’s because the germ is responsible for our illness and not the overall state of our health. Traditional medical practice calls for identifying and destroying invading germs, including bacteria (but not by viruses including cold and flu) through the use of antibiotics. Unfortunately, antibiotics are often over-prescribed and germs are mutating to survive them.
On the other hand, the Terrain Theory, embraced by holistic practitioners from a wide range of medical fields, asserts that germs that can cause disease will do so when the body is more susceptible and that the more healthy we are (the terrain) the less likely we will become ill; if we do, we will become less ill. In other words, when the body’s internal environment is at its best, then immunity, metabolism, and detoxification are at their strongest. Consequently, the body is less susceptible to illness and has the best defense against “disease causing” germs. Antibiotics are used sparingly and primarily in life-threatening situations.
It’s important to understand that taking antibiotics does not contribute to building immunity; they are prescribed for treatment, not prevention, and there is the real threat of resistance.
Antibiotic Risks and Drug Resistant Disease
When prescribed judiciously by doctors and used properly by patients, antibiotics can save lives by destroying bacteria or stopping it from reproducing. Despite the wonders of this medicine, there are significant problems:
  • 20% of people experience side effects including gastrointestinal, kidney, and joint abnormalities after taking antibiotics. Risk for side effects and weight gain increase with each additional ten days of use.
  • About 10% of people are allergic to antibiotics.
  • In the U.S. more than two million illnesses per year are caused by resistance to antibiotics, resulting in 23,000 deaths when these drugs fail to work.
Antibiotic resistance (AR) means that the germ targeted by the medication has mounted defenses that render the drug ineffective even when taken properly. Situations and conditions that present the greatest risk for AR include:
  • Overuse of antibiotics
  • Not taking the medicine as prescribed
  • Long hospital stays
  • Not having the ability to meet essential nutritional needs
  • Improperly handling raw meat, consuming contaminated meat, crops, or water
  • Contact with infected individuals
Protect Your Internal Terrain from AR
Healthcare is faced with a dangerous rise in antibiotic resistance, making the more holistic “terrain approach” to battling germs vital to preserving health. Here’s what you can do:
  • Take a probiotic supplement, a quality multivitamin, follow a quarterly detox regimen, get adequate sleep, and eat a variety of whole foods
  • Choose organic foods (antibiotic-free meats, non-GMO grains)
  • Filter your water (drugs disposed of at landfills can get into groundwater supply)
  • Use herbal treatments like Viracid that indicate virus’ and boost support at the onset of symptoms.
  • Limit your intake of sugar and processed foods (these lower immune function)
The unfortunate truth is the “kill the germ” perspective is failing. We will reach a point where we do not have effective antibiotics. By bolstering the internal terrain, a healthy and vibrant person can mount the immune defenses necessary to protect their health.

Ever Thought About Going Vegetarian?

Tips for Going Vegetarian

There’s Vegetarian. And there’s Vegan. Related, yet different. Both diets eliminate meat, fish, and poultry. Vegans don’t eat any dairy, eggs, or other products derived from animals. Sub-types of vegetarianism, however, make exceptions for certain animal products:
  • Lacto-ovo-vegetarians eat both dairy products and eggs.
  • Lacto-vegetarians eat dairy products but avoid eggs.
  • Ovo-vegetarians eat eggs but not dairy products.
Whatever your reason for choosing this dietary path – your health, concerns for the environment, or for spiritual reasons (or a combination of these reasons) – be aware of common mistakes that can adversely affect your health. Understanding these pitfalls can help you maintain a nutritionally sound vegan or vegetarian diet:
Consuming too much fruit sugar. Fruit is an important part of any healthy diet, but consuming too much fruit sugar on a daily basis can have a detrimental effect on blood sugar. Also, fruits alone fail to provide the diversity of nutrients a body needs to thrive. Balance fruit intake with veggies, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains.
Lacking dietary variety. Being a creature of habit, or being afraid to try new foods or recipes, can leave your diet deficient in nutrients, and your taste buds in a sorry state. You’ll have food cravings, hunger pains, and might just give up on vegetarianism. Follow those famous Dr. Seuss characters’ advice: Try New Things; You Might Like Them!
Tipping the carb scale in the wrong direction. With so many convenience foods for vegetarians, it’s easy to get tricked into thinking you’re making a healthy choice by selecting “fortified with (fill in the blank)” products over fresh foods. Many of those products are loaded with hidden sugars and sodium. Get complex carbs and grains from whole, organic food sources such as barley, wheat, rye, millet, flax. Buy dried berries and nuts without added sugar or salt.
Mismanaging your protein. Folks new to vegetarianism don’t properly combine foods to provide sufficient amounts of complete protein for their age and activity level. Many people wind up relying on protein shakes, which is not the ideal way to obtain protein. Most of your protein should come from whole, real, fresh foods.
Dr. Myra Reed or health coach, Brooke,  can help you establish good, flavorful meal planning strategies.
Both vegetarians and vegans need to pay attention to the intake of nutrients lost by omitting meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. As noted above, “fortified with” foods aren’t the best because the nutrients aren’t in the most bio-available state for the body to utilize. The nutrients most commonly lacking in vegan/vegetarian diets are:
  • B vitamins, particularly B12 and B6
  • Calcium
  • Iron, Zinc and Selenium

To track your nutritional intake, try this awesome program: cronometer.com. It has both free and paid account options. To understand your nutrient needs and assess risk for deficiency, see Dr. Myra Reed for a nutrient assessment test (details below). This simple blood test indicates if deficiencies are present and need to be corrected, as well as how to best support already good health with the right dose and type of supplements for you.