Displaying items by tag: FBF blog

Tuesday, 03 December 2019 12:13

This One Is For All Of The Ladies

Every month at around the same do you find that your gut is super sensitive?  

As if your gut is flagging you down; putting up the red flag; and shouting:  "hello I am very unhappy!" 

You start to experience unexplained constipation, diarrhea, bloating or all of the above.  And, you wonder what the heck did I eat?  

You start back tracking 3 days; investigating your diet; initiating a formal inquiry into everything you ate; searching out the culprit.

This has been happening to me for the last 18 months.  Once a month I go into a tailspin.  I completely panic and think I am going to go back to how I felt 10 years ago; 10 years ago when I felt completely rundown and basically awful.  

Why?  Why does this happen?  I eat a clean diet, a diverse diet, a diet that should not cause any of the above mentioned symptoms.  

Well, 4 months ago I finally determined who was the culprit.  I now know where to point my finger, what to blame.  It was like Adele was sining to me: "HELLO, it's me....HELLO, can you hear me?"  

Ahhh, yes I can.  I know who you are.  

Have you guessed it?

It's my period, my menstruation cycle, my monthly visitor.  Oh why, oh why is my period now causing me gut unrest?  Oh period I deal with the zits, the swollen chest, the little edge to my personality.  I know you are coming.  Trust me, I do not need any other warnings.  My cravings for sugar that I arduously avoid are already so hard to manage.  Why do you test me to my breaking point?  I have worked so hard not to have gut unrest.

What is changing in me as I age?  Yes, I am aging.  I have transitioned out of a making baby body into a pre-menopause body.  Am I really that old?

This change makes me think of Diane Keaton and Steve Martin in Father of the Bride Part II.  In all honestly I had to just look up the title to one of my favorite movies.  And, no I am not ready to think about that memory lapse; let alone blog about my occasional need to use google when my own brain can not dig up the file I need.  Anyway, do you remember the seen when Diane Keaton is reading the book, "The Change", in bed; and Steve Martin is having one of his infamous panic attacks?  This is how I feel!  Thank you Diane and Steve for adding some comedy to my monthly cycle.

 

So, what is causing this monthly gut unrest?

My good friend and dietitian explained it to me.  As I type this I am wondering why I didn't turn to her 18 months ago; why did I wait so long?  Am I honestly still nervous to talk about poop and gas?  Seriously, I shouldn't be-I have put it all out there on this website for you to read.  There are not any secrets left for me. :)

 

Here is the basic answer:  Hormones.

Your hormonal cycle can cause both constipation and diarrhea.

During the second half of your period your body is producing more progesterone.  Progesterone is responsible for the thickening of your uterus.  The progesterone is working to slow down your uterus and it can do the same to your colon-slow it down-cause constipation.

Well, what about the diarrhea?

As your actual menstruation begins to start another culprit, prostaglandins, increase in your system.  Prostaglandins tell the uterus to relax and allow the shedding of the uterus (the blood) to occur.  Again, your colon thinks it should be doing the same thing, shedding.  Your colon relaxes and wants to empty at a very fast rate.

Well, that makes senses.  Hormones.  Another reason to blame our hormones.

 

Why?  Why now is my body more sensitive?  

My body is more sensitive to these hormone changes because my body and hormones are changing.  My body is transitioning out of it's ability to make a baby.  This is part of its natural cycle.

 

What can I do about it?

Give my gut grace.  Stop playing the blame game.  Stop evaluating my diverse, clean diet that the other 26 days of the month makes me feel amazing.

I need to acknowledge that these symptoms are going to happen regardless and definitely not dependent upon what I eat.  

I need to stop eliminating food that gave me gut unrest right before I get my period.  It is not a forbidden food.  It is a hormonal response.  Again, it is not the food choice!

I need to remind myself I am healthy.  Throwing myself into panic attack is only going to increase the stress hormones in my body and cause more negative responses in my gut.  

I need to chill out!  This is normal.  My body is normal.

 

Published in FBF Blog

What do you buy for the teenager living with Fructose Malabsorption?

A typical teen's gift list most likely includes a new phone, a new computer, fancy headphones and a gaming system.  Basically all 21st century teenagers want tech presents with a hot logo and a recognizable brand name; and have no concept that a $500 phone is a big ask!

When I was a teenager in the 90's I am sure my parents felt the same way and lamented my annual holiday list.  I can remember being desperate for a Coach purse, Doc Martin boots and a Champion sweatshirt.  By the way, did you know Champion sweatshirts are cool again; especially vintage sweatshirts?  Both of my teenagers desire hooded Champion sweatshirts with the small "c" on the cuff.  Too bad I am the opposite of a hoarder and didn't save all of mine.

Clearly teenagers have their hearts set on gadgets and brand name items.  I have a few ideas for you that are popular at our house.  

I am sure you are asking yourself what do tech gadgets and trademarked presents have to do with Fructose Malabsorption?  I am actually asking myself how I made this connection.  Sometimes I wake up dreaming about Fructose Malabsorption; and fantasize how I can make life better for my daughter.  These early morning musings sometimes turn into my best FBF blog ideas.  What works for my daughter living with Fructose Malabsorption most likely might help you make your teenagers holiday a bit more magical. When I go to bed at night I think about what do I want most for my daughter as she navigates Fructose Malabsorption.  How can I nurture her?  I want my daughter to:

to love her life

own her food intolerance

feel that she is in control of what she eats and doesn't eat

and most importantly that life is still fun when you have Fructose Malabsorption.

 

So, how do I make this happen?  How do I make my 13 year old holiday wishes come true without taking out a loan?  I buy tech items, gadgets, things that need to be plugged in, and soft goods and hard goods with brand name appeal.  I seek out items that help her own her Fructose Malabsorption; give her a sense of control and maturity that she is so desiring; and hopefully (fingers crossed) find something that is worth a social media post.  Score one for me, the coolest mom of a teenager!  Most likely not cool, but at least appreciated.  :)

 

Holiday Gift Guide For Teenagers Living With Fructose Malabsorption:

(disclaimer:  I do not have any affiliate program)

1.  Soda Stream Machine:

When you have Fructose Malabsorption you are limited to 15 grams of fructose a day.  At our house our goal is to consume 95% of daily allowed fructose in safe fruits and vegetables.  This doesn't leave room on our fructose scale for popular sugary drinks like soda, juice, and energy beverages.  This is tough when you are teen!  You want to sit around with your girlfriends, watch a movie and enjoy a fun drink.  You can't do this with Fructose Malabsorption.  Most commercially produced beverages marketed to teens are a Fructose Volcano waiting to happen.  I watched my daughter go through this last year.  We had a post hockey game gathering at one of her teammate's houses.  All of the other girls were drinking soda and other fructose landmines disguised as healthy options, and my daughter was stuck with water.  Yes, water is good for her and she needs to drink a lot of it (see item #2).  However, she also craves bright and shiny packages, flavored drinks and beverages that bubble when you open them.  She wants to blend in with her teammates, feel like she is part of the group and not an outsider.

Last year my son purchased a Soda Stream Machine for my daughter for her birthday.  I had no idea how this would transform her life.  

It is bright turquoise; contains a carbon dioxide canister; makes bubbly, fizzy water in seconds; and you can get creative and customize your own flavors.  Our Soda Stream Machine is so cool it has actually been featured in many social media posts.  Most evenings my daughter makes her own flavored bubble water with our Soda Stream Machine.  Currently, her favorite is cranberry.  She has also experimented with lemon, lime and orange bubble water.   It only takes a splash of fresh juice.  It is 100% natural.  Yes, actually it comes from nature not from "natural flavors".  It is incredibly low in fructose and that is a win at our house!

 

2.  Hydroflask:

Have you heard of VSCO?  No, not a typo.  Not disco, but VSCO.  VSCO is one of the hottest social media trends for young teens.  Originally a photo-editing app, VSCO has become the "hippie" or "grunge" style of the 21st century Gen Z millennials.  The VSCO girl aesthetic is driven by specific brand names:  Lululemon, Birkenstocks, Fjallraven backpacks, Apple AirPods, and Hydroflasks.  VSCO girl social media posts are all about product placement!  Picture a group of teenage girls taking selfies with scrunchies and friendship bracelets lining their wrists; Lululemon black leggings; oversize college sweatshirts (why didn't I save my old Champion sweatshirts?); bright white ankle socks pulled up over the leggings; original brown Birkenstocks; a tiny Fjallraven backpack causally draped over one shoulder; and a Hydroflask in one hand and an iced coffee in the other hand.  That is VSCO!  I am all in for my daughter expressing herself and embracing trends.  When I was her age I was obsessed with Guess Jeans, Benetton rugby shirts, and Jansport backpacks.  I just didn't have the ability to get together with my girlfriends for a spontaneous photo shoot.  Thank goodness some of my looks are only memories and not memorialized forever in the cloud.  

What strikes me the most about the latest millennial trend is Birkenstocks.  Truly, Birkenstock has an amazing marketing team.  Somehow Birkenstocks were cool in the 70's when my parents participated in peace rallys wearing bell bottom jeans and both of them had hair longer than mine.  Where is the photo cloud for these moments?  Flash forward to the 90's when I was in high school and it was all about Seattle grunge rock.  Most days I would wear my dad's x-large flannels to school with baggie jeans and Birkenstocks.  No, I didn't have AirPods; but, I had a bright yellow "Walkman" with mixed tapes featuring my favorite songs from Reality Bites.  Birkentstock, where will you take us next when my young nieces are in their teens?

Back to the Hydroflask.  The Hydroflask is a water bottle that keeps drinks cold for 24 hours.  Last December when my daughter asked for a Hydroflask I was all in.  Yes, it costs a considerable amount more than most water bottles.  But, if it gets her to drink water it is priceless. When you have Fructose Malabsorption digesting access fructose can cause an osmotic load in your body.  In layman’s terms this basically means that your body is working really hard to get rid of excess fructose and pulls a lot of water out of other cells in your body to eliminate the fructose.  When you have Fructose Malabsorption it is essential to drink a lot of water.  I try to drink 72 ounces of water each day and want my daughter to, too.

At our house we are embracing VSCO:  the brandnames, the creative expression, the photo shoots and the Hydroflask.

 

3.  A Blender:

Yes, I am recommending a blender.  No, this isn't a wedding registry item-it is for your teenager.  A blender is a gadget.  It can be techie, quite expensive, have all sorts of buttons and customizable options, and is a great gift for a teen with Fructose Malabsorption.

For the last few years I have intuitively known that protein is my gut's friend.  Protein makes my unique gut happy and run like a train that is on schedule.  How do I know this?

Since my diagnosis 10+ years ago I have been conducting a scientific experiment of my own gut.  I have been trying to determine what makes my unique gut happy and what makes it angry.  And, looking for answers/conclusions/rock solid evidence on what I can and can not eat.  I want a set of rules for my gut.  I don't want guess work.  Yes, accidental overdoses and fructose volcanoes have happened in the past 10 years.  But, for the most part my scientific experiment has helped me find a diet that works for me.  All of my logging in daily food journals, reading label after label, and experimenting with different combinations of fresh whole food has worked.  For the most part I know what I can and can not eat and how much of a "safe" food is actually safe.

I am a quantitative person.  I want results that can be measured and numbers that I can live by.  And, I want researchers/scientists/gastroenterologists to help me find this quantitative data. For example, I do best when I eat less that 15 grams of fructose per day, eat more glucose than fructose, and eat protein with every meal.

My scientific study has helped me determine that protein is my friend.  If I want to eat vegetables or fruit that are higher in fructose eating a protein source with it helps.  Why is this?  What's the deal with protein?  Is there a link with protein consumption and fructose malabsorption?

I never knew scientifically why this worked, but I intuitively knew why.  Protein makes my gut happy. 

Recently, one of my new Fructose Malabsorption friends shared an article from the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition that proves my theory.  Amino acids, found in proteins, have been scientifically proven to aid in fructose absorption.

It is amazing how intuitive your gut can be.  It sometimes knows whats best for you more than your brain.  My brain wants cookies, but my gut wants protein.  Listen to your second brain:  your gut.  :)

I was thrilled to read this study.  Some unknown chemist spent countless hours in a lab and quantitatively determined for me what I already knew:  protein (or more specifically amino acids found in protein) help digest/absorb fructose.  Wow!  My theory has been validated!

I eat protein with every meal, but my daughter who also has Fructose Malabsorption doesn't enjoy protein as much as I do.  She also has a hard time eating a large enough protein proportion because her tummy gets full.  And, sometimes I am not craving fish, steak or chicken.  And, when you live with Fructose Malabsorption you need protein each day.

We recently found a solution: organic, 3rd party tested protein powder.  

For the last six months I have been drinking a glass of water each evening with a scoop of protein powder.

How do I feel?

Amazing!

What is different?

My gut's train schedule is never delayed and it definitely isn't speeding up if you know what I mean.  My bowel output is the best it has been in years.

Any other changes?

Yes, the rest of me feels better!  I am not experiencing mid-afternoon nap desires.  I can actually function at 3:30 each afternoon.  

And, my hair and skin look and feel fantastic!  I even notice new eyebrows growing in.  Please don't ask me about my over plucking eyebrow situation from my late 20's.

I am definitely not claiming that protein powder is a miracle supplement for everyone.  However, for me it is!  My unique gut was clearly missing some important amino acids.

4 months I ago I asked my daughter to try protein powder.  

Here is where the blender comes in.  I knew she wouldn't want to just drink straight up protein powder.  If she was going to embrace this experiment it needed to be an experience.  Over the course of the last 120 days we have had a lot of fun perfecting a protein powder smoothie.  Her favorite recipe calls for 9 ice cubes (her favorite number is 9), 1 cup of organic milk, 1 scoop of protein powder, and a little cocoa powder.

My daughter is also finding positive results.  She is actually choosing to make herself a protein powder smoothie before her hockey games.  

I love that the protein powder has taken away the protein push in my house.  It's ok if she doesn't want cooked chicken at lunch and is full after a grilled cheese and cucumbers.  She is getting those needed amino acids in a different form.

 

 

Published in FBF Blog
Saturday, 16 November 2019 22:04

Low Sugar Muffin Recipe

Recently I was reminded of one of my favorite Julia Child's quotes:  "You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces, just good food from fresh ingredients".  

As I was meal planning that same day it occurred to me that my family isn't looking for a masterpiece, they are craving a family meal.  They desire time spent together around our kitchen table sharing our days, laughing and spending time together.  

Sometimes our family dinners are 15 minutes long and we all talk at the same time as we quickly eat a turkey sandwich before we rush out the door to activities.  Other evenings I have time to prepare a dinner that is a little more complicated then putting fresh turkey on bakery bread.  What Julia Child made me realize is that it isn't a fancy meal that beckons my family to the table, it's fresh food and time spent together that calls them.

How I can a get back to basics like Julia Child suggested, but at the same time come up with new ideas so I am not rotating the same 12 recipes?  

Where do I start on this new cooking adventure?  

Where do I find tips and recipe suggestions for "good food from fresh ingredients"?  

Many recipes I do come across on the internet and see while browsing cookbooks are masterpieces.  It feels completely daunting to embark on making many of these suggested meals and most of them are not basic or easy.  

It occurred to me the answer is on my cookbook shelf.  

I own my mom's Joy of Cooking cookbook that was published in 1964.  You will not find any glossy pictures in this book, just simple recipes and tips on how to cook fresh in season food.  The pages of my cookbook are slightly yellowed, some pages are falling out and the dessert section is speckled with cocoa powder and my mom's handwriting.  My mom is an excellent baker!  One of her favorites is page 643, the Buche de Noel:  a simply divine chocolate roll cake with whipped cream frosting and a chocolate glaze.  You will also find in the Joy of Cooking cookbook over 500 simple recipes, tips on how to pick the perfect cut of beef, and nutrition information.

I am going to embrace Julia Child's motto and go back to the basics:  "good food from fresh ingredients". 

The first new recipe I made out of my rediscovered Joy of Cooking cookbook was "Fish Baked In A Covered Dish", page 352.  I determined it couldn't get any simpler than this.  The recipe title actually made me laugh out loud, "Fish Baked In A Covered Dish."  No catchy name, no fancy words like "au bleu" or "consommé" in this recipe title; just baked fish in a dish.  It sounds like a Dr. Seuss rhyme.  I need to tell you it was delicious and very easy.  I prepared the fish in less than 2 minutes, watched it bake for 20 minutes and then finished it with a little butter, fresh herbs, lemon juice and capers.  It's not a fancy meal, it's not a masterpiece that you could find at a 3 star Michelin restaurant, but it brought my family to the table and gave us an opportunity to spend time together. 

Later, I was browsing my newly rediscovered cookbook and came across page 581 and the Sour Cream Muffin Recipe.  Near the title my mom in cursive handwriting had noted one word:  "Great!"  

Wow, great, that says something about this recipe.  It is approved by my mom and that's the best endorsement I can find for any recipe.

I started reviewing the ingredients and was shocked at ingredient #5:  "2 tablespoons sugar"!  

Yes, only 2 tablespoons sugar in a muffin recipe.  

No, not 2 tablespoons of sugar in one muffin.  Only 2 tablespoons of sugar in the entire recipe.  This recipes isn't just great it is downright fantastic.  This recipe is a dream for someone living with Fructose Malabsorption.  

This recipe is safe.  

Hallelujah!!!  

Thank you Joy Of Cooking 1964!!!  I would like to personally recognize the authors and chefs of 1964.  Thank you for creating a recipe that doesn't rely on mountains of SUGAR to create a tasty treat.

My children LOVED the muffins.  I added organic dark chocolate chips, just a few, not a lot.  Neither of them commented on a lack of sugar nor a lack of a sweet taste.  Amazing, 2 tablespoons of sugar makes a "Great" muffin!

 

Recipe from Joy Of Cooking 1964:

"Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Have all ingredients at 75 degrees.

Sift before measuring:

2 cups flour or 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

Resift with:

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbsp sugar

1/2 tsp baking soda

Add 1 cup sour cream and 1 beaten egg.

The mixing is held to an absolute minimum....Ignore the lumps. (that is a great tip)

Bake for 20-25 minutes."

I baked my muffins for 15 minutes and they were perfect.

I also added 1/4 more cup of sour cream because that was another note my mom added.

 

 

If your family needs to eat gluten free muffins I prefer the gluten free flour mix suggested by "A Little Insanity"

 

Last spring I experimented with removing 50% of the suggested sugar in all recipes and found success. Link here to learn about my scientific process, experiments, results and discoveries.

 

Published in Quick, Easy, Healthy

For the last few years I have really wanted to start taking vitamin and mineral supplements.  Why haven't I started?  What is holding me back?

Anxiety is preventing me from taking this step.  I have extreme apprehension about adding anything to my gut and honestly an outright fear of a negative gut response.  

Will the supplements change my gut flora that I have worked so hard to rebuild?  Can supplements cause Fructose Volcanoes?  I definitely do not want to take anything that will challenge my unique gut and set it off in a downward spiral.  I have worked so hard to find gut balance, and am so proud of my happy, healthy insides.

Two years ago I experimented with supplements and started using Vitamin D drops in the winter knowing that most Minnesotans lack Vitamin D.  Why? Because we live in a tundra and the only sun we see for 6 months is when we run like a penguin between our car and the grocery store and work.  A few weeks into the supplements I stopped taking them because I didn't feel any different and my gut unrest anxiety was at an all time high.  

My Fructose Malabsorption is definitely under control compared to 10 years ago.  The original symptoms that caused me to find a diagnosis have mostly disappeared.

Since changing my diet:

my gut is no longer irritable everyday;

my joints do not ache (unless I play too much basketball with my teenage son);

I do not feel like my brain is living in Seattle like fog;

and I don't constantly look pregnant due to excessive bloating.

But, I hold on to this foreboding fear that my FM is going to smack me in my face and rear up again.  Yes, I feel healthy, but I fret and get flustered evaluating how I feel each and every day.

I intuitively know I need to take supplements because I still struggle with fatigue. Yes, I can get though the day for the most part without yawning, but at night I am just plain tired, even exhausted some evenings.  

My family jokes that I have narcolepsy. Truly, I actually feel that way. I can fall asleep anywhere without warning if it is after 8:00 pm. Just last Saturday I feel asleep in an Uber talking to a good friend. One moment I am laughing and the next moment out cold. My friend is totally used to this. I have fallen asleep on her couch, my couch, and on countless couches on family vacations.

Why am I still so tired?  What am I missing?  How can I find out for me quantitatively what my body is missing?  How can I take the guesswork out of this mystery?  If I scientifically, on a cellular level knew what I was missing I think I would be less scared to take the supplements.

I have actually never walked into a vitamin shop and avoid the supplement isle at the grocery store.  It's like a sneaky dragon is living in the isle luring me, nudging me to sample, badgering me to face my fear.  Clearly, I have a few issues.

Recently, I reached out to my dietitian because I was ready to face my supplement fear head on.  It's time for action.  

My dietitian came to my rescue, like a "knightess" in shining armor wielding the information I needed.  

There is actually a quantitative, scientific test that uses my own blood and white blood cells to check for missing micronutrients.  In my world this means I have unlocked the secret door to less anxiety and a better understanding of me and my unique gut.  My dietitian calmed my fears, is on my team and had a solution.  I can with scientific help determine what my unique gut needs.  I can remove the guesswork, the fear of the unknown and fuel my body.  Hallelujah!

Last week I received my results.

I am deficient in B12 and Chromium.

I am borderline deficient in Zinc, Selenium, D3, Folate and something called Pantothenic.  

To be honest, I am not sure what it all means.  

Are there any connections to Fructose Malabsorption and these deficiencies?

What's the chicken and what's the egg?  Am I deficient in B12 because my body was made that way and that deficiency messes with sugar digestion process?  Or, did my days of gut unrest change my ability to absorb and use B12.

I do not have the answers.  HOWEVER, I have someone on my team who is going to help me figure this out.  3 CHEERS to my dietitian!!!  She truly is a "knightess" riding in on her horse here to help me and my unique gut.

Yes, I have a lot more questions than answers.  But, I am not scored, nor anxious, nor nervous.  I have more knowledge now about me.  This is just another layer in the Fructose Malabsorption journey.

As my dietitian and I unravel all of these connections I will keep you posted.  

Stay tuned.  There is a lot more to share about my Fructose Malabsorption story.

 

Published in FBF Blog

Brown Rice Syrup, Is It Good Or Bad?  Should We, Fructose Malabsorption Patients, Ingest Brown Rice Syrup?  How About A Granola Bar Made With Brown Rice Syrup?

Since my diagnosis with Fructose Malabsorption and my daughter's subsequent diagnosis with Fructose Malabsorption we have strictly avoided all man-made sugars other than pure can sugar and glucose syrup.  

Man-made sugar scares me!  The sugar industry is highly unregulated; food companies can change sugars in products and not label it correctly; and food scientists are constantly inventing new sugars.  

I know what it is like to live in a constant state of gut unrest, overall inflammation, and daily Fructose Volcano episodes.  I do not want to eat something that is supposedly a "safe sugar" and have it cause another eruption!

 

For 10+ years our #1 rule is:  mostly all man-made sugars are BAD and should undoubtedly be avoided!!!

 

Recently one of my Facebook Fructose Malabsorption Friends posed the simple question:  "Has anyone found a safe granola bar?".  Before I even read the responses I wanted to respond, "No, there are NOT any safe granola bars on the market".  "Trust me, I have honestly spent 300 hours scouring granola bar labels at the grocery store and online and have NOT found any safe options."  

 

A few years ago I gave up my quest for commercially made granola bars and started experimenting with making my own.  Wow, granola bars are tough to make!  It takes a lot of experimenting to find the perfect recipe that gives a granola bar a nice crunch, but not too crunchy so that it breaks your teeth.  And, a granola bar where the ingredients stick together, but are not so sticky that they are impossible to chew and swallow.  We have made a lot of disgusting granola bars!  I would say that a few of them have not been edible.

We have sampled at least two dozen recipes over the last few years trying to perfect the perfect granola bar recipe.  It finally occurred to me after a lot of missteps that I needed to create a simple syrup with sugar and water to replicate the quality of honey, molasses or a high fructose syrup; an ingredient that would help the granola bar ingredients stick together, and stay crunchy at the same time.

Here is a link to our best recipe and a recipe my daughter enjoys:  

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Goodness Granola Bars

Currently, these are the ONLY granola bars we eat at our house.  Why?

When I make granola bars at home I can control the ingredients.  

I know they are made with safe cane organic sugar.  

When my daughter eats them in moderation combined with other whole real foods her gut and body are happy.  That is my goal:  I want my daughter to feel happy, healthy; and ready to tackle school, sports and social media.  I do not want Grace to feel run down nor anxious.

So why did I just purchase two new brands of granola bars?  Why am I willing to experiment with her gut?

Because two of my Facebook friends suggested granola bars made with brown rice syrup.

Wait, didn't I just state that our rule was, "mostly all man-made sugars are BAD and should undoubtedly be avoided"!  Yes, I did.

So, what is brown rice syrup?  

Is it a safe option?  

Brown Rice Syrup comes from fermented brown rice and is mostly glucose.  And, we know that glucose is like a spaceship helping to transport fructose into our cells; therefore, preventing the dreaded Fructose Volcano.

Is there finally a product out there that I could purchase and not have to make?

And, wouldn't that be fantastic?  

My daughter is desperate to have a packaged item in her lunch!  She wants to feel "normal".  She desires bright, shiny packages.  I am willing to give it a try based on my research.  Part of her happiness as a preteen is feeling "normal".

Yes, brown rice syrup is commercially made.  And, yes food from the earth is best!  However, when you are 12 years old and live in an environment where bright shiny packages of food are available and served everywhere---at school, gas stations, after hockey practices, at friend's houses and at the local coffee shop----it feels good to have an occasional packaged product.  

I stress the word occasional.  I am not going to pack these new granola bars in her lunch everyday.  And, I am not going to go hog wild and give her the entire granola bar the first time we try them.  We are going to take it slow.  We will try a few bites of one type of granola bar, evaluate our symptoms for the next 3 days, avoid all other "scary" foods, write down all evidence of symptoms, and then try a few more bites.  If we find success, meaning my daughter still feels happy and healthy then we will try 1/2 of a granola bar and start the process all over again.  

It is really important when trying a new food to keep a food journal.  At Families Balancing Fructose we created a food journal and a recording system that works well at our house.  Here is a link to our food journal: FBF Food Journal.

I will let you know if these granola bars work for my daughter.  I will let you know if she prefers bright and shiny, or homemade.  

 

Granola Bars We Purchased:

MacroBars

Happy Bars

 

 

Published in FBF Blog

For the last few years I have intuitively known that protein is my gut's friend.  Protein makes my unique gut happy and run like a train that is on schedule.  How do I know this?

Since my diagnosis 10+ years ago I have been conducting a scientific experiment of my own gut.  I have been trying to determine what makes my unique gut happy and what makes it angry.  And, looking for answers/conclusions/rock solid evidence on what I can and can not eat.  I want a set of rules for my gut.  I don't want guess work.  Yes, accidental overdoses and fructose volcanoes have happened in the past 10 years.  But, for the most part my scientific experiment has helped me find a diet that works for me.  All of my logging in daily food journals, reading label after label, and experimenting with different combinations of fresh whole food has worked.  For the most part I know what I can and can not eat and how much of a "safe" food is actually safe.

I am a quantitative person.  I want results that can be measured and numbers that I can live by.  And, I want researchers/scientists/gastroenterologists to help me find this quantitative data. For example, I do best when I eat less that 15 grams of fructose per day, eat more glucose than fructose, and eat protein with every meal.

My scientific study has helped me determine that protein is my friend.  If I want to eat vegetables or fruit that are higher in fructose eating a protein source with it helps.  Why is this?  What's the deal with protein?  Is there a link with protein consumption and fructose malabsorption?

I never knew scientifically why this worked, but I intuitively knew why.  Protein makes my gut happy. 

Recently, one of my new Fructose Malabsorption friends shared an article from the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition that proves my theory.  Amino acids, found in proteins, have been scientifically proven to aid in fructose absorption.

It is amazing how intuitive your gut can be.  It sometimes knows whats best for you more than your brain.  My brain wants cookies, but my gut wants protein.  Listen to your second brain:  your gut.  :)

I was thrilled to read this study.  Some unknown chemist spent countless hours in a lab and quantitatively determined for me what I already knew:  protein (or more specifically amino acids found in protein) help digest/absorb fructose.  Wow!  My theory has been validated!

I eat protein with every meal, but my daughter who also has Fructose Malabsorption doesn't enjoy protein as much as I do.  She also has a hard time eating a large enough protein proportion because her tummy gets full.  And, sometimes I am not craving fish, steak or chicken.  And, when you live with Fructose Malabsorption should you have more amino acids/protein than someone who doesn't have Fructose Malabsorption?

Would a protein powder be a good idea?  How would it feel in my gut?  Would I have a negative reaction?  

I have wanted to try a protein powder for the last year, but have been really nervous.  There are so many options available.  And, how do I know what is safe and not safe?  Which ones contain artificial ingredients, sweeteners and/or chemicals?  I do not want any of that in my protein powder.

Last week someone posed the following question on one of my Facebook Fructose Malabsorption groups:  "What protein powder do you all eat?".  I was so excited to see this post.  I knew my Facebook community would have the answer for me.  I should have turned to them earlier.

After reviewing all of the Facebook opinions I embarked on a little research of my own.  I found a 3rd party, the Clean Label Project.  The Clean Label Project is a, "nonprofit focused on health and transparency in consumer product labeling."  "In 2018 the Clean Label Project completed a study of 134 protein powder products from 52 brands. Products were screened for over 130 toxins including heavy metals, BPA, pesticides, and other contaminants with links to cancer and other health conditions."  Their conclusions included many safe powders and many unsafe powders.  

I chose Amy Meyers MD protein powder because both my daughter and I can digest grass fed beef and other protein sources don't work well for us.  Pea protein can have natural fructose in it and rice protein tends to ferment in your gut.  And, neither of us definitely do not need extra fermentation.  Have you ever heard of a Fructose Volcano?

For the last 90 days I have been drinking a glass of water each evening with a scoop of protein powder.

How do I feel?

Amazing!

What is different?

My gut's train schedule is never delayed and it definitely isn't speeding up if you know what I mean.  My bowel output is the best it  has been in years.

Any other changes?

Yes, the rest of me feels better!  I am not experiencing mid-afternoon nap desires.  I can actually function at 3:30 each afternoon.  

And, my hair and skin look and feel fantastic!  I even notice new eyebrows growing in.  Please don't ask me about my over plucking eyebrow situation from my late 20's.

I am definitely not claiming that protein powder is a miracle supplement for everyone.  However, for me it is!  My unique gut was clearly missing some important amino acids.

45 days I ago I asked my daughter to try a 60 day trial of protein powder.  She, too, is finding positive results.  I won't get into details because I don't want to embarrass her.  My daughter, too, feels great inside and out!

I love that the protein powder has taken away the protein push in my house.  It's ok if she doesn't want cooked chicken at lunch and is full after a grilled cheese and cucumbers.  She is getting those needed amino acids in a different form.

Share With Me, let me know what your thoughts on protein powder.

 

 

Sources:

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Article About The Facilitating Effects of Amino Acids

Published in FBF Blog
Thursday, 14 March 2019 03:40

My Sugar Experiment

About a month ago I started a science experiment; a sugar science experiment to be exact.

In one of my former lives I was a science teacher.  I spent my days teaching 7th and 8th students about chemistry, biology, geology, how not to start a fire in the science lab, and the scientific method.  

I have a few funny stories from my days spent with 135 13 and 14 year olds.  Like the time one of my students attempted to hurdle his lab bench, but didn't take into account his low hanging pants and his lack of an NBA like vertical jump.  I think he thought he was the next Michael Jordan.  You could see it in his eyes before he launched himself into the air.  That confidence only lasted for a millisecond, crashing to the ground as he did like a tumbleweed with his pants caught in the lab bench.  It still makes me laugh out loud every time I think about it.  I wonder what he is doing 23 years later?  Is he a basketball star?  

Do you all remember the scientific method from junior high?  Do you even remember the name of your science teacher?  I hope my students remember me, but doubt that they do.  

I will give you few clues about the scientific method:  it has 5 steps, includes a hypothesis, and is the basic tenet of how to conduct an experiment.

Just in case you are old like me and can not remember what you learned 30 years ago, here is a review.

The Scientific Method:

  1. Make an observation.
  2. Ask a question.
  3. Form a hypothesis, or testable explanation.
  4. Make a prediction based on the hypothesis.
  5. Test the prediction.
  6. Iterate: use the results to make new hypotheses or predictions.

As I was contemplating my family's sugar habits after a very indulgent holiday season I asked myself a few questions:

Why is their so much sugar in breakfast breads, cookies, and cakes?

Do all of these recipes need that much sugar?

Wouldn't it be great if I could reduce the sugar by 50% in our favorite recipes?

Would my kids notice a difference?

 

I also made a few predictions:

If I could successfully remove 50% of the sugar from our favorite recipes then my daughter and I (who both have Fructose Malabsorption) could enjoy these treats more often.

I also had my doubts.  I predicted my science experiment would be a total flop.  The banana bread and chocolate chip cookies that are staples in our house would have a horrible taste and the texture would be different....meaning the kids would notice I had made a recipe change.

 

Let's apply the scientific method to my sugar experiment.

  1. Make an observation:  My kids, let's be honest me, too, adore baked goods!  We love baking together.  It is one of the ways I can get my preteen and teenage children to interact me.  It truly is like I am dangling the golden carrot in front of their face.  But, it's actually a cookie, brownie or breakfast bread.  "Kids, if you come and bake with me we can have a special afternoon treat."  This addiction is hard when you have Fructose Malabsorption and are limited to 15 grams of fructose per day.  We know that 1 tablespoon of sugar has 12 grams of sugar in it.  That means there are 6 grams of fructose in each tablespoon of sugar.   That is a lot of fructose when a chocolate chip cookie recipe calls for 1.5 cups of sugar.  The odds are stacked against me here.  I love to indulge in baked treats, but I need to be so careful.  
  2. Ask a question:  Could I the reduce the amount of sugar in our favorite beloved recipes and still like them and will my kids notice?
  3. Form a hypothesis, or testable explanation:  If I remove 1/2 of the sugar in our favorite recipes like:  banana bread, homemade ice cream, chocolate cake, pumpkin bread and cookies will my family notice the missing sugar?  Well, this was certainly a reason to start baking, and luring my kids into the kitchen to bake with me.  Are you curious how I duped them?  I actually altered the recipe card before we baked together...so sneaky of me.  wink
  4. Make a prediction based on the hypothesis:  They will totally notice the difference!  They will be able to taste the lack of sugar.
  5. Test the prediction:  First sugar experiment:  bake banana bread.  Result:  no comment.  Second sugar experiment:  make homemade chocolate chip ice cream.  Result:  no comment.  Third sugar experiment:  bake chocolate chip cookies.  Result:  no comment.   You get the idea..no comment, yes no one even mentioned a difference in taste or texture.  They loved it all and devoured it all!  
  6. Iterate: use the results to make new hypotheses or predictions:  My kids have truly no idea that their favorite treats are actually healthier and missing 50% of the sugar.  WOW!

My new hypotheses or predictions based on my very scientific sugar experiment include:

What if I remove most of the sugar in stir fry recipes or our favorite crock pot meals?  I am predicting my children will have no clue their is a change based on my qualitative and quantitative data (their lack of comments).

Why didn't I think of this sooner?

And, what should I bake next?  

Share with me your favorite recipes.  Let's all dive into this sugar experiment concept.  

Any professional bakers out there?  

Can you tell me why recipes call for so much sugar?  

Is it our American taste buds?  

Are we all addicted to overly sweet, sugar soaked treats?

 

On our Families Balancing Fructose website I have a few of our favorite treat recipes listed.  In these recipes I have not reduced the sugar amount.  If you choose to try them, try using 1/2 of the recommended sugar and let me know if you taste a difference.

Zucchini Bread 

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

Chocolate Candy Cookies

On the Families Balancing Fructose blog I explore a few other sugar topics:

All About Sugar:  a collection of blog articles exploring sugar in all its natural and man-made forms

Coconut Sugar:  should we believe all of the hype and is it a safe choice for Fructose Malabsorption?

Cliff Notes® on Sugar Digestion

Published in FBF Blog

How A Food Intolerance Led To Undiagnosed Appendicitis and Emergency Surgery:

 

Last week my daughter, who has Fructose Malabsorption, started vomiting at 6:00 on a Monday evening and continued to vomit until late Tuesday morning.  My husband and I just assumed she had a bad case of the stomach flu or secretly ate something with a lot of fructose and was suffering the consequences.

Like all assumed stomach flu incidents I go into DEFCON 5 cleaning mode.  It is like I can see the egregious flu intruder floating around our house.  I strip beds, wipe down mattresses, bleach bathrooms, clean out the fridge...basically I become slightly neurotic.  My goal is to prevent the spread of the invader to other members of my family.  

When the flu hits I also start to "mother from a far".  I take care of my children, but I don't like to get too close.  My lack of human touch isn't based on detachment or a lack of concern.  I am honestly afraid of getting sick and then not being able to take care of my family.

So back to my story.  Here we are Tuesday afternoon and I force my daughter to leave her bed so I can change her sheets and open her windows (assuming that the freezing MN winter temperatures will assist me in my full onslaught flu attack).  It takes my daughter about 3 minutes to walk out to our family room.  She is moaning and groaning and I am thinking, "ok here comes the drama".  "This girl just needs a little food, the flu has definitely left her body, and we will be back to normal in no time."

WOW, was I so wrong!  Within 30 minutes of laying down in our family room my daughter started screaming in pain and clutching her lower right abdomen.  I went from mothering from a far to picking her up and assisting her into my car without a care about germs.  I knew my daughter needed emergent care and was really sick.

24 hours later we had visited two emergency rooms, taken a ride in an ambulance, spent 8 hours controlling pain with IV drugs, and paced the floors of our local Children's Hospital waiting for our daughter to wake up from surgery.  No, my daughter did not have the stomach flu nor ate too much fructose.  She had appendicitis and was very sick.  Her appendix was 5 times as big as it should be and green, and all of her intestines were angry and inflamed.

How did this happen?

How did I not know sooner what was happening to her? 

Were there any signs prior to the onset of vomiting?

Where was my mother's intuition?

Now that our daughter is back at home and on the road to recovery I can think about these questions and find answers.

3 months ago, December 2nd to be exact, my daughter started complaining about low belly pain.  She would text me from school and friends' houses complaining of tummy pain; sending me puking emojis with exclamation marks. Honestly, I thought she is 12, probably eating extra holiday candy and treats, testing her Fructose Malabsorption, and learning that her body definitely can not have a lot fructose.  I assumed her lack of energy was because she is a pre-teen and her body is growing and needs rest.  I can tell you that it never occurred to me that something might be wrong with my daughter.

In January my daughter continued to complain about her tummy pain.  At one point she gave up peanut butter for the week because she thought she had developed a peanut intolerance.  Hello, red flag!  

Why did I not put more stock into her gut voice? 

My daughter has an ardent and well cultivated gut voice.  She has been diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption for 7 years, knows how to listen to this voice, and is an intuitive eater.  95% of the time she listens to her gut, makes safe food choices and has learned how to successfully balance her daily fructose loads.  Yes, occasionally she eats too much fructose when she is with girlfriends.  But, we don't make her feel bad about that.  This is part of the process.  We want her to take ownership of her food intolerance and learn how to live with it.  

Why then?  Why as she was complaining about an upset tummy did I not listen?

Because when you have a food intolerance you learn to live with a certain amount of stomach distress.  When you have a food intolerance you do not have an iron gullet that is always content and happy.  My son likes to say that he has a hollow leg and an iron gullet.  He can eat anything he wants, any amount he wants and never feels any ill effect.  That is not my daughter.  Her tummy is sometimes irritable.  She can not eat whatever she wants.  If she goes to a movie she packs safe snacks.  If she goes to a friend's house for dinner she typically eats mostly protein because she knows most commercial sauces and products don't work for her gut.  She is constantly thinking about what she is going to eat for future meals and how those choices affect what she is currently eating.  My daughter knows her gut and knows how to keep it happy.

My heart breaks for my daughter.  Watching her in the hospital in intense pain was awful.  I felt like a terrible mother.  

Why hadn't I listened to her?  

Why did I let Fructose Malabsorption blind me from other potential problems?  

Does this happen to everyone who has a food intolerance and/or an irritable gut?  

How do you determine what is your normal and what is more serious?

How can we learn to advocate for ourselves and our guts?

How can we tell the difference between a little irritability; and when our gut is attempting to get our attention, sending up a red flag that something more serious is going on?

I searched "abdominal pain" on the Mayo Clinic website and found a very extensive list of potential causes.  I had no idea so many acute issues can mask themselves as simple abdominal pain. 

I have learned two important lessons from this experience.

1.  Go to the doctor, seek medical help if you have ongoing abdominal pain.  All gut unrest is not always related to your food intolerance.

2.  My daughter is a tough cookie.  Her hockey team sent her a get well present that included a card with the definition of a tough cookie:

"1.  Someone with the just the right mix of sweetness and strength.  

2.  One who doesn't crumble under pressure.  

3.  A fighter who's too busy kicking butt to sit down and cry, but know it's okay to do both.

 4.  A person who doesn't always ask for support, but has lots of friends who

would do anything to help."

Published in FBF Blog
Thursday, 07 February 2019 01:04

It's Ok To Sometimes Be A Little Gassy

Why do we panic when we feel a little gassy?

Why does a little bowel wind send us into a tailspin where we start evaluating everything we have consumed in the last 3 days making us feel like we have done something wrong, indulged in the forbidden fructose fruit?

Why?  Because we know what it is like to live in a state of constant bowel unrest.  

Before I was diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption each and every evening I looked 3 months pregnant.  My gut was so bloated that my pants wouldn't fit.  Do you all sympathize with me?  Have you felt this way before?  If you have Fructose Malabsorption I assume you know this feeling all too well.

Where does all this air go that is living in your distended gut?  It just doesn't magically disappear.  It tends to come out your back side.  

Can I just say I don't like the word fart?  I prefer more sophisticated terms like flatulance, or funnier phrases like booty cough or rectal turbulence.  "Fart" makes me feel embarrassed.  "A little gassy" seems more medical to me, like there is a medical reason why my body is tooting.  

This "medical disturbance" in my body used to happen so often that I coined the phrase:  "Fructose Volcano".   What is a Fructose Volcano?  If you have Fructose Malabsorption your body has a difficult time absorbing digested fructose.  The majority of the fructose you eat is not absorbed into your bloodstream; and sits in your gut resulting in all sorts of issues.  It’s like a volcano waiting to erupt causing gas that makes you feel bloated, producing bowel wind, and changing your bowel output (diarrhea and/or constipation).  

As soon as I was diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption and started eating a clean, low fructose diet my gut and gut output made a radical change.  I could start to see my abdominal muscles.  I didn't need to loosen my belt in the evening or even worse change into my house sweatpants; you know those sweatpants that you would never leave the house in, those sweatpants that are so incredibly comfortable and incredibly unflattering at the same time.  You know what I am talking about.  Everyone has house sweatpants.  

I also started to notice a change in my gas levels.  Before diagnosis they were in the red zone, the gauge was teetering on the brink of self-destruction.  Now, after diagnosis I live in the green zone.

So, then why do I still get occasionally gassy?  Should this gas scare me?  Is it always fructose related?

According to the Mayo Clinic website:  "everyone passes gas several times daily" and "intestinal gas rarely indicates a serious condition. It can cause discomfort and embarrassment, but it's usually just a sign of a normally functioning digestive system."

If the Mayo Clinic tells me that everyone passes gas and does so multiple times a day; then why do I always evaluate everything I eat when I feel a little gassy?

I think it is because I am honestly incredibly scared to feel the way I felt before I was diagnosed.  In addition to my irritable gut I felt downright awful.  My joints ached, my nose leaked all year long, and my brain was in a constant state of fog.  For some reason for me gas equals warning sign, red flag, the fructose volcano is about to erupt.

Last week I went out to lunch with one of my good friends who happens to be a dietitian.  Our conversation was mostly about gas.  Yes, it is a funny conversation to have over lunch!  My friend confirmed what the Mayo states:  most gas is not bad, gas happens, gas is a sign that your body is digesting food.  No, I do not need to panic every time I pass wind.  

 

My friend also taught me two important digestive lessons.

1.  Certain foods produce more gas.  Foods like soybeans, bananas, whole wheat and oats are in a food category called Prebiotics.  

Probiotics and Prebiotics what is the difference?

Probiotics are foods with active live cultures like yogurt, sauerkraut, tempeh, miso, pickles and kefir.  

Prebiotics can stimulate the growth and balance of healthy bacteria in the colon.  Prebiotics are potentially protective against colon cancer and other diseases, help to absorb calcium, and may reduce the presence of pathogenic bacteria in the colon.  

Prebiotic foods may produce occasional gas and that is ok.  The gas is a sign that your colon is producing healthy bacteria.

2.  If you have been on a restricted diet for an extended period of time, or are in a challenge phase of an elimination diet protocol who do you know if the gas is good or bad?  That is a good question.  My dietitian friend told me that gas will most likely happen as you introduce new whole real foods into your diet.  

For example; if you eat something new like oats and have a little gas that is ok.  Your body is doing the right thing, those good oat Prebiotic bacteria are doing their job.

However, if you eat oats and your gut starts really yelling at you or your bowel output makes a huge shift in output or it causes very smelly gas then that food like oats is probably not a good choice for you.  

 

What about the FODMAP protocol? It is recommended by many dietitians as a tool to help determine what your unique gut likes and doesn't like.  Here is a quote from the Monash University website regarding food reintroduction and FODMAPS: 

"When you experience symptoms, it is vital that you are tuned in to the severity. Pain and significant discomfort are not OK and you can discuss these outcomes with your treating dietitian who can advise further on future challenges and food trials you may better tolerate. But for many people, the reintroduction of FODMAPs, or FODMAP ingestion when eating, results in gas production and a little bloating. The initial thought is that there has been a reaction and the food should again be removed from the diet, but we ask you to think about it in a different light.

Fermentation and gas production after eating high FODMAP foods is beneficial to the gut. If you experience some gas related symptoms that are tolerable and perhaps just include some mild bloating and flatus, this could be a good sign that you are providing fuel that encourages good bacteria in your gut. Everyone experiences some bloating and flatus and it is important not to immediately consider these as ‘symptoms’ of IBS, rather they should be considered a normal part of healthy digestion (as long as there is no significant discomfort or pain!).

So remember, a little gas is a good thing."

 

What have I learned about gas and my gut?

1.  A little gas is ok.  It is actually a sign that my body is going through a healthy process.

2.  I need to eat those foods that give me a little gas because my body needs those Prebiotic bacteria.

3.  I do not need to freak out every time I have a little gas.  Not all gas leads to the dreaded Fructose Volcano.

4.  If I do eat something and my gas and other symptoms are more severe then that food is not a good choice for my unique gut.

 

Additional FBF Blogs:

Cliff Notes On Sugar Digestion:  more details regarding Fructose Volcanoes and Glucose Spaceships

A Closer Look at FODMAPS

Fructose Malabsorption and Chronic Inflammation

Daily Fructose Malabsorption Journal 

 

Published in FBF Blog

How to read a food label, or more importantly how to avoid highly processed man-products that are high in fructose:

I get it.  You are frustrated.  You are living with Fructose Malabsorption and you don’t know what to eat.  You don’t know what is safe.  You wander the isles at your local grocery store looking at labels after labels frustrated because you can not even pronounce most of the ingredients.  Trust me, I have been there.  When I was first diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption the grocery store made me incredibly anxious.  I knew I was supposed to avoid high fructose corn syrup and other obvious ingredients like honey and molasses; but I had no idea that so many other hidden, potentially gut bomb ingredients were out there.  I was at a total loss; to scared to purchase any mass produced food product.  At first, due to my food fears, I would only eat whole foods:  foods without a label.  But, after time I started to educate myself and realized that there were a lot of companies who were committed to using real whole food; and in fact there were a fair amount of products that I could eat.  I am ten years into my diagnosis, and have replaced my anxiety and food fears with knowledge.  I now know what is safe, what to avoid, and what questions to ask myself everytime I look at a food label.


I ask myself these questions when grocery shopping:


-Is this ingredient made in a factory or does it come from the Earth?


-Can I pronounce this ingredient?


-Can I create a mental picture of this ingredient?


For example:  I know that acesulfame potassium does not come from the Earth; nor can I pronounce it.  Also, I have no idea what acesulfame potassium looks like in its natural state.  Therefore, why would I want to eat it?  My body was made to digest real whole food, not man-made highly processed products like acesulfame potassium.


When I ask myself these questions I always come to the safest conclusion.  If it doesn’t come from the Earth; if I can’t pronounce it; and if I can’t picture what the product looks like in its natural state then I know I shouldn’t eat it.

 

Check out this food label:

 

When you first look at this label you might think this product is safe for me and you, and it is gut friendly.  High fructose corn syrup is never listed in the ingredients.  But, if you look closer and ask yourself the above mentioned simple questions you will realize that this product is a gut bomb, not safe.  “Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Date Paste, Organic Cane Syrup, Organic Dried Cane Syrup, and Organic Tapioca Syrup” are all man-made highly processed products that potentially contain high levels of fructose and should totally be avoided.  Don’t be misled by the word “organic”.  “Organic” does not equal safe and does not equal healthy.  This product and other products like this should be avoided.


So what should you eat?  What products are safe?  Check out the Spotlight section of my blog.  I have highlighted many safe products.

 

It is important to keep a daily food journal when you are diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption.  It will help you determine what foods are safe for you.  Each of us has a unique gut voice and we need to learn to listen to it.  Link here for an example of a Fructose Malabsorption Daily Food Journal.

 

Everyone with Fructose Malabsorption tolerates different levels of fructose and has their own unique gut and gut voice. It is best to make a list of what feels good and what doesn’t, listen to your gut voice, and remember it is all about the daily balance. 

 

 

Published in FBF Blog
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