The discomforts of indigestion are so common in today’s society that indigestion is almost considered normal. The fact that over 2 billion dollars are spent each year on antacids is proof of this. Rather than using drugs to suppress symptoms, wouldn’t it be wiser to remove the causes of indigestion?
Correct food combinations are important for proper digestion, utilization, and assimulation of the nutrients in our diet. The principles of food combining are dictated by digestive chemistry. Different foods require different digestive enzymes to aid in the digestive process - some acid, some alkaline. As any student of chemistry will assure you, acids and bases (alkalis) neutralize each other. When acids and alkalines come in contact, they neutralize each other and this retards digestion.
Protein foods require a highly acidic environment for digestion while carbohydrates (starches, fruit and sugars) and fats require a more alkaline medium. Anytime 2 or more foods are eaten at the same time, and those foods require opposite conditions for digestion, the digestive process is compromised.
When starches and proteins are combined their stimulation to the digestive juices generates a conflicting response and produces a medium which does not digest either food very well. This situation often leads to indigestion, bloating, gas, abdominal discomfort, and poor absorption of nutrients. Any quick digesting foods - such as fruit - must wait until the slowest digesting foods leave the stomach before they can leave - a process which can take up to 6 or 8 hours. While waiting, the fruit and some of the starches undergo some decomposition and fermentation, producing gas, acid and even alcohol along with indigestion.
Proponents of food combining advocate the following principles:
The most important rule, is this: Don't mix starch foods with protein foods at the same meal.
Here are the other principles which proponents of food combining adhere to:
Food combining: chew all food close to liquid consistency
One principal of food combining which I find hard to argue with is the idea of chewing all foods close to a liquid before swallowing, to help digestion.
14th edition of Howell's Textbook of Physiology (p.777) is
(1729 - 1799), one of the oldest observers on gastric
the tremendous importance of thorough mastication of all
Food combining: try it for yourself
Food combining is a controversial practice. Many people swear by it, while others find it ineffective and frustrating. There is no detriment to the food combining diet - if it works for you, use it.
Food combining is an area where everyone seems to have an opinion. One way to find out what is right for yourself is to experiment. Try it and see how you feel. Listen to your body. What works for one person may not work for another person.
© 2002 Healing Daily