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Beyond Lactose Intolerance: Your Body May Not Be Digesting These Common Foods

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  • Lakanto Sweetener (800g)

    Lakanto Sweetener (800g)

    The Healthiest Sugar Substitute Available

    LAKANTO is the only zero calorie, zero glycemic sweetener that is just like sugar.

    Lakanto is the only zero calorie, zero glycemic sweetener that is just like sugar. Lakanto Golden’s mouthwatering aroma and delicious flavor tastes like brown sugar. While Lakanto Classic’s clean and crisp sweetness tastes like plain white sugar.

    Lakanto looks like, tastes like and works just like sugar. Unlike most fruits, whose sweetness comes from fructose, Monk Fruit’s sweetness comes from natural mogrosides that are 300 times sweeter than sugar.

    Plus, Monk Fruit extract does not elevate blood sugar or insulin, making it a perfect sweetener for maintaining health blood sugar levels and weight management.

    • Ideal sugar substitute for baked goods
    • Safe for Diabetics
    • Zero Calories

    Now available in two flavors: Golden or Classic. What's the difference?

    Taste.
    Golden has a flavor similar to brown sugar or molasses.
    Classic has a flavor more similar to table sugar.

Lactose intolerance is the inability to break down the sugars that belong specifically to milk. If you get gassy or feel a cramping sensation after you drink milk or eat anything that contains milk, it may be the milk sugars that you cannot digest.

While you may digest some sugars, you may find that you feel better when you avoid others.

What happens when you cannot digest certain sugars?

These sugars do not get absorbed where they should, in the small intestine, and instead they end up being food for bacteria later on down the line. Fermentation of undigested sugars happens in the large intestine, which is where stools are formed.

These sugars, which we cannot digest and that end up feeding bacteria and fungal overgrowth in the gut, are known as FODMAPs. FODMAP is an acronym that stands for fermentable oligo- di- mono-saccharides and polyols. Gastroenterologist Dr. Peter Gibson developed the FODMAP list of foods to treat patients with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).

lakanto-golden_1

Compared to sugar alcohols found in sugar-free treats, Lakanto is much easier to digest. Unlike sugar alcohols, Lakanto will not ferment in the large intestine.

How FODMAPs Affect a Healthy Gut

What all FODMAPs have in common is that they are all rapidly fermented somewhere along the gastrointestinal tract, specifically in the far end of the small intestine or in the large intestine.

What does this rapid fermentation look like? There may be:

  • Abdominal cramping
  • Bloating
  • Brain fog
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Gas
  • Headache
  • Heartburn

These symptoms can be painful and overwhelming, but there is good news when it comes to how what you eat affects your digestive health. In an Australian study conducted on 30 IBS patients and eight healthy individuals, dietary data was collected for one week. Patients were then assigned to random groups to receive 21 days of a FODMAP diet or a typical Australian diet, followed by a 21 day "washout period" before the alternate diet began. IBS participants saw gastrointestinal symptoms improve on the low-FODMAP diet. Most notably, pain, bloating, and flatulence were reduced.1 

FODMAPs have become so important in IBS rehabilitation, with an estimated one in seven adults suffering from IBS, that Department of Gastroenterology researchers at Monash University launched a low-FODMAP app to track low-residue foods and manage IBS symptoms.2

5 FODMAP Foods to Watch Out For

A key thing to remember: Everyone is different.

This means that while you may digest some sugars, you may find that you feel better when you avoid others. And because a neighbor or a family member has different bacteria and different enzymes in their gut, they may have a completely different experience with these same foods!

Lactose is the most famous FODMAP. But there are several other common foods that make the FODMAP list.

FODMAPs hide out in the most surprising places:

  1. Beans and Lentils: Oligosaccharides are short strands of simple sugars. Remember, to be a FODMAP, these sugars have to be difficult to break down:
  • Common foods in this group are several varieties of beans and lentils.
  • One enzyme that the human gut does not have (but bacteria do) is called alpha galactosidase (a-gal). This enzyme is particularly important for digesting beans, and it is the active ingredient in "Beano."
  1. Wheat, Onions, and Cabbage: Also an oligosaccharide, wheat contains a type of sugar called a fructan:
  • Fructans are found in inulin and other common foods such as Jerusalem artichokes, cruciferous vegetables like cabbage and cauliflower, onions, scallions, and avocados.
  1. Milk Sugars: Lactose is a milk sugar and a disaccharide. Cow, sheep, and goat’s milk all contain lactose.
  1. Fruit, Agave, and Honey: Fructose, which is fruit sugar, is a monosaccharide:
  • If you eat more fructose than your small intestine can absorb, it becomes food for bacteria and ferments.
  • Keep in mind: We can only digest 20–25 grams of fructose in one sitting.
  • All high-fructose fruits fall into this category—also, sweeteners that contain fructose like agave, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), and honey.
  1. Xylitol, Apples, and Peaches: Polyols are sugar alcohols. Examples of sugar alcohols are xylitol, maltitol, and sorbitol:
  • These sugar alcohols taste sweet but are not absorbed as sugar. They are commonly used in "diabetic candy," in sugar-free mints, and in chewing gum.
  • Xylitol is a popular sweetener for those who avoid sugar and is a FODMAP polyol.
  • If you find that you have trouble with sugar alcohols like xylitol, try using Stevia or Lakanto that contains erythritol. Erythritol is a four-carbon polyol and, unlike other polyols, it is well absorbed.
  • While sugar alcohols are fermentable in the large intestine, when eaten in excess they can also lead to osmotic diarrhea.
  • Natural sources of polyols are apples, peaches, and pears.

Don't Forget the Principle of Uniqueness!

Figuring out which foods are hard to digest could be the key to your digestive success:

  1. Remember that you may not need to eliminate all FODMAP foods.
  2. Often, the foods we eat every day are the ones that affect us most.
  3. It takes time and patience to figure out which foods you cannot fully digest.

What To Remember Most About This Article:

When you can't digest certain sugars, they will feed harmful bacteria in the gut over time. Sugars that are commonly difficult to digest and that feed fungal overgrowth are called FODMAPs. FODMAPs cause rapid fermentation in the gastrointestinal tract, resulting in gas, heartburn, diarrhea, fatigue, and other related symptoms.

Your body may have a hard time breaking down these five FODMAP food categories:

  1. Beans and lentils
  2. Wheat, onions, and cabbage
  3. Milk sugars
  4. Fruit, agave, and honey
  5. Xylitol, apples, and peaches

Everyone is different in how they respond to FODMAPs. You may be able to digest some sugars easily and have a difficulty digesting others. Any food you eat should digest easily, which all begins with healing the gut and balancing your inner ecology with beneficial bacteria.

  • Lakanto Sweetener (800g)

    Lakanto Sweetener (800g)

    The Healthiest Sugar Substitute Available

    LAKANTO is the only zero calorie, zero glycemic sweetener that is just like sugar.

    Lakanto is the only zero calorie, zero glycemic sweetener that is just like sugar. Lakanto Golden’s mouthwatering aroma and delicious flavor tastes like brown sugar. While Lakanto Classic’s clean and crisp sweetness tastes like plain white sugar.

    Lakanto looks like, tastes like and works just like sugar. Unlike most fruits, whose sweetness comes from fructose, Monk Fruit’s sweetness comes from natural mogrosides that are 300 times sweeter than sugar.

    Plus, Monk Fruit extract does not elevate blood sugar or insulin, making it a perfect sweetener for maintaining health blood sugar levels and weight management.

    • Ideal sugar substitute for baked goods
    • Safe for Diabetics
    • Zero Calories

    Now available in two flavors: Golden or Classic. What's the difference?

    Taste.
    Golden has a flavor similar to brown sugar or molasses.
    Classic has a flavor more similar to table sugar.

  • Stevia Liquid Concentrate

    Stevia Liquid Concentrate

    Sweet-tasting Herbal Extract Dietary Supplement

    • Zero Calorie, Zero Carbohydrates, Zero Glycemic Index
    • 985 servings in every bottle
    • Bitter-free, refreshingly sweet, smooth-tasting
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  • Veggie Culture Starter

    Veggie Culture Starter

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    • Ideal for appetite and weight control
    • Ideal for pregnant women
    • Ideal for children with Autism and ADD
    • Curbs cravings for bread, sweets and dairy

REFERENCES:

  1. 2014 Jan;146(1):67-75.e5. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2013.09.046.
  2. "Monash Launches Low FODMAP Diet Smartphone App." Monash Launches Low FODMAP Diet Smartphone App.

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  • http://bodyecology.com/articles/new-findings-on-insomnia-is-this-at-the-root Food Allergies and Insomnia: Is This at the Root? - All Body Ecology Articles

    […] of food intolerance is enzyme deficiency: If you are unable to digest the milk sugars — or lactose — in milk, you may be missing a key enzyme called lactase. This would mean that you have a food […]

  • Anne

    Does anyone know if cultured vegetables then are allowed on a low-fodmap diet?

  • Angel

    Anita...you must not be familiar with the Body Ecology diet, because the comment suggests to eat processed foods...far from it. Get the book and read it first, I did and it is nothing but whole organic foods, in perfect combinations for healing and I am walking proof. 23 lb.s fell off after eating the B.E. Diet, quit gluten all together, and the 80% non-starchy veggies they have you eat has healed me tremendously from IC, and the bladder/urination pain, it alkalizes my over-acidic body, that is a result of years of excedrin for headaches, probably from gluten...needless to say it's superior to the IC diet and has broken a corrosive cycle!

  • Susan

    I would agree w/ Ms. Patil............... still trying to deal with the smoothie videos that line up a dozen packages of things I can't afford, all with the subtle message that w/o these things we will not thrive. Please try to consider the simple answers and spare us the complicated information. Your core program is excellent.

  • Madeline Loder

    Thanks for article. A mystery may be cleared up for me. I have found, though, that erythritol triggers symtoms too.

  • SarahB

    A nutritionist told me to avoid lo han because it is high in fructose which she says, has a very negative impact on the liver. I notice that Lakanto is made with lo han. What is the fructose level in Lakanto, and is this a problem?

  • Anita Patil

    while there is some merit in the article - i.e., people can be intolerant or allergic to certain foods; it is unwise and perhaps potentially more dangerous to replace natural foods like beans, lentils, fruits, milk, etc with processed, artificial foods.. the best path to health is to eat as close to the soil as possible, i.e., fresh, seasonal, organic, local produce, plus small amounts of animal products

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Information and statements regarding dietary supplements/products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Information on this website is provided for informational purposes only and is a result of years of practice and experience by the author. This information is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional or any information contained on or in any product label or packaging. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing medication or other treatment. Always speak with your physician or other healthcare professional before taking any medication or nutritional, herbal, or homeopathic supplement, or using any treatment for a health problem. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your healthcare provider promptly. Do not disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking professional advice because of something you have read on this website.

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