Trust your gut. Not numbers on the side of a food product or on a recipe post.
More than ever, our culture is obsessed with food rules. And in my opinion, we are heading down the wrong path!
Hey, don’t get me wrong…I love food and kinda obsess over what yummy goodness I will place in my mouth at my next meal. I love nourishing food. I love eating with friends and family. I love the dining out experience.
I respect the fact that what’s on my plate is my choice and what’s on your plate is yours.
I have learned via trial and error, after my emergency surgery resulting in a major small intestinal resection, what works for me and my sensitive gut… and what doesn’t. And this hasn’t required the need to read the nutrition facts panel.
I trust my body to be my guide.
I love chocolate. I eat it every. single. day. I don’t exclude any foods from my diet that I enjoy and that my body enjoys back. I really don’t angst over food decisions…and really, I hope the same for you!
There is so much pseudo-science on the Internet geared toward individuals that suffer with SIBO and IBS, that most of my clients come to my office entrenched in so many food fears and RULES. It is not unusual that some clients are eating just 6 foods. No grains. No nightshades. No dairy. No gluten. Low FODMAPs. No lectins. Is this healthy? Not one bit.
The reality is there is NO EVIDENCED BASED DIET for SIBO. And likely, the approach to SIBO needs to be individualized as the cause of SIBO IS individual. And addressing the underlying cause, when possible, should be part of the treatment algorithm.
Because the majority of SIBO patients fulfill the criteria for IBS, it makes the most sense to me to trial the diet with the most evidence for IBS, the low FODMAP diet, as a starting point. Working with a dietitian that specializes in GI nutrition is worth the investment in my opinion (if you can), as maintaining a well balanced nutrient dense diet is essential for overall gut health.
A GI dietitian can help guide you in intuitive and mindful eating.
I don’t like the use of terms like ‘safe’ or ‘unsafe’ foods or ‘legal’ vs. ‘illegal’ as these terms can instill food fear but I realize there are times when the term safe may be essential, such as when it means gluten free to an individual with celiac disease or food allergen free for someone with food allergies or low FODMAP food for those with IBS.
I often get asked why I do not post nutrition facts for my recipes. I don’t post nutrient information for my recipes, as I firmly believe you should allow your body to be your guide and minimize decisions based on the number on a box or on a recipe. I appreciate that some of my followers are diabetic and follow certain carbohydrate limitations, but the vast majority do not need carbohydrate details and for this reason, and those mentioned previously in this post, I have opted to not provide nutrition facts.
My colleague, Kara Lydon, RD, LDN, RYT, Intuitive Eating Counselor and Blogger at The Foodie Dietitian, doesn’t post nutrition facts for recipes on her blog either. Kara says, “I don’t provide nutrition information for my recipes because I don’t believe that food should be reduced to numbers. Food is so much more than calories and grams of carbohydrates and protein, food is pleasure, food is joy, and food is celebration. I don’t talk about numbers in sessions with clients because trying to stick to a certain amount of calories or grams of something will not result in weight loss or health, it will only make you preoccupied with food. And if I’m not talking numbers with my clients, I’m definitely not talking about them on the blog either.”
For me, I choose what I eat based on what I am craving and how the food makes me feel. I include a variety of colorful produce, protein, healthy fats and whole grains at most every meal. My motto: Balanced Plate=Balanced Body. No food labels needed.