Your digestive health is important because it helps your body to break down food and absorb the nutrients you need. It also gets rid of waste products from your body. If you have a problem with your digestive system, you may experience symptoms such as abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, and over the long term, malnutrition.
It is no secret that your diet can affect your digestion, however, what bothers one person may not bother another person. Below we have compiled the most common food culprits that result in digestive issues.
Processed meats, such as ham, sausage, hotdogs, beef jerky, and bacon, have been treated to preserve or enhance their flavor, texture, or shelf life. This includes meats that have been smoked, cured, salted, or dried. While these meats can be delicious and convenient, they can also be hard on the digestive system. They are high in saturated fat and sodium, both of which contribute to digestive problems, such as constipation, diarrhea, and bloating.
Fried foods are one of the worst things you can eat for your digestive health. They are high in fat and calories and can cause indigestion, heartburn, and other problems. Fried chicken, French fries, chicken nuggets, and hashbrowns are examples of fried foods that are best eaten in moderation.
Though dairy products do not negatively affect everyone, many experience digestive issues such as bloating, cramping, and gas from milk, cheese, and other dairy products, as they can be hard to digest, particularly for those who are lactose intolerant. They can also worsen existing conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Examples of refined carbohydrates include white bread, pastries, and other baked goods, as well as white rice. These foods are highly processed and lack the fiber that helps to keep the digestive system healthy. Refined carbs can cause constipation, diarrhea, and bloating in some people, and also raise your risk for conditions such as obesity and type 2 diabetes.
A little spice can be healthy, however, eating spicy food may trigger heartburn, acid reflux, GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) symptoms, or indigestion in many people with digestive issues.
Pineapples, tomatoes, and orange juice are all foods high in acid. The high acidity can contribute to heartburn and indigestion in people who suffer from gastritis, acid reflux, and GERD, as these foods can irritate the lining of the stomach, which can lead to inflammation.
There are a few reasons why alcohol is bad for digestive health. First, it can irritate the lining of the stomach, which can lead to inflammation and ulcers. Second, it can increase acid production in the stomach, which can lead to heartburn and indigestion. Third, it can slow down digestion and cause constipation. Finally, alcohol consumption has been linked to an increased risk of developing pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas).
Treatment for Digestive Issues in Austin, TX
Persistent digestive issues should be evaluated by gastroenterologists, who specialize in treating and preventing them. The board-certified gastroenterologists at Austin Gastroenterology (AG) are committed to providing you with the best GI care in Central Texas and helping you find relief from your symptoms.