What makes food more digestible?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 19, 2013 at 4:39 PM

After 8 or 9 months of mostly grain-free paleo eating I started to gain weight. I fell off the paleo wagon after that experience, ate junk for a while, my psoriasis has flared up, and now I am feeling the need clean up my diet and burn off the 10 pounds I gained in the last few months.

When I did different diets in the past every now and then I would do a period of cleansing. I realize that there are different opinions on whether cleansing is valuable or not. In my experience there can be value in cleansing although how and when to cleanse is a very individual matter. So, I'm not interested in a discussion of value. My N=1 experience trumps someone else's opinion!

So, what's my question? I'm getting there.

Cleansing, to me, is about consuming foods with lots of nutrients with minimal effort to digest them. An extreme that I wouldn't recommend is the water fast. No effort to digest but also no nutrients. Juice fasts can have lots of nutrients (and sufficient calories depending on what you juice and how much you drink) and very little effort to digest. But, juice fasts can be troublesome to people with blood sugar issues and you'll lose strength an muscle mass on them.

Here's my question. What diet would you consume if you wanted to ease the digestive burden on your body for a while and maintain strength and muscle mass? That to me means the "cleanse" period needs to have sufficient calories -- I plan to keep working out -- as well as sufficient protein. I'm personally not afraid to have plenty of carbs in my diet.

Here are some random thoughts on the components of such a diet:

  • Raw eggs are a great source of protein and I imagine they're easy to digest.
  • Coconut oil is easier for the body to process than other fats, or so I've read.
  • I do fine with veggie and fruit juices that I make myself.
  • I suspect meat, raw or cooked, is not so easy for me to digest.
  • I do ok with small amounts of milk and that can be a powerhouse of nutrients.
  • If I'm going to eat fibrous veggies I'm better off cooking them well and then blending them with some liquid.
  • Intermittent fasting is a way to give the body a break.
  • Saunas are good for detoxing.
  • Digestive enzymes, probiotics, and HCl will help digestion.

What are your thoughts? What would you consume to ease the digestive burden on your body for a while?

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on March 19, 2013
at 04:57 PM

Your list looks pretty good to me! I would only consume raw egg yolks though, and just throw out the whites. Maybe you could also add fermented foods like water kefir or kimchi or something like that? Beside coconut oil, red palm oil is also easier to digest (because your body doesn't need bile to process it like the other oils). And I would eat some protein, maybe in the form of slow cooked fish? A little 'trick' I use for better digestion, is drinking tea made of bitter herbs, this increases bile production. And after each meal, i eat some gelatin, this also aids your digestion because it attracts all the digestive fluids to your food. I also would try to limit the overal amount of FODMAP's, and try to eat everything warm, so no icecream or things out of the fridge. And oh, really try to limit your water intake during meals, but I guess you already know that!

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