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Low Fermentation Diet 101

Video Transcript:

Welcome back to the Oswald Digestive YouTube channel. I'm happy to see you all here.

And today we're going to discuss the low fermentation diet.

Our gut really plays a vital role in our overall health and wellbeing, and it is home to trillions of bacteria that help promote having a healthy gut. All of these bacteria we call the gut microbiome.

Our gut microbiome helps with digestion, nutrient absorption, and even our immune system. So when our microbiome might be a bit imbalanced, you can end up with symptoms such as digestive disorders, more inflammation in the body, as well as even poor mental health.

One approach to improving our gut health is through the low fermentation diet. This diet actually help focuses on reducing the amount of foods that actually creates fermentation in our gut.

Those foods are things like high fiber foods and even certain carbohydrates that can ferment in our digestive system.

My name is Marcie Vaske and I'm a functional nutritionist with Oswald Digestive Clinic. Here we work with people who have lots of digestive disorders, and if you would like to make an initial appointment, I'll link our website down below where you can easily make an initial appointment.

So let's jump back into our topic all about the low fermentation diet.

What is the Low Fermentation Diet?

And what this is all about is it's a dietary approach that helps to reduce high fiber foods and certain carbohydrates that tend to ferment in the digestive system.

This fermentation occurs when our gut breaks down carbohydrates, fibers, even resistant starches, and they break down into different gases as well as other byproducts. Now, a little bit of fermentation is completely normal.

It's when we have excessive fermentation going on that we're going to have a lot more symptom.

So as you guess, the low fermentation diet takes out a lot of these high fiber foods as well as some carbohydrates.

What foods are to be avoided on the Low Fermentation Diet?

So foods like legumes, grains, things like cruciferous vegetables, also going to be in there are certain fruits.

And instead it really focuses on promoting more lean proteins, a bit low fiber food as well as our healthy fats.

Now, the low fermentation diet really offers a lot of symptom relief. So by reducing those high fiber foods and carbohydrates, what happens is that you'll have less bloating, less gas, less inflammation going on.

And this type of diet can be really helpful for people who are struggling with IBS and just can't get a handle on their symptoms.

And for those of you who may have sibo, which is small intestinal bacteria overgrowth, so if you're struggling with IBS or irritable bowel syndrome or even sibo, and you're thinking, wow, this kind of might fit or work for me, what foods do I have to take out?

A few of the foods to be avoided will be those legumes or lentils, whole grains.

Those really promote a lot of fermentation as well as those cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower, which can increase the amount of bloating that we might experience.

What fruits are to be avoided on the low fermentation diet?

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And when it comes to fruits, there's definitely going to be fruits that will have to be eliminated and voided for a short time, such as apples or pears, and even sweeteners like honey and agave and artificial sweeteners, those all can promote a more fermentation in the gut, creating more of those symptoms of bloating and gas.

Now, if you're thinking, okay, that's something I want to try, what about meal planning and is it tricky?

Is meal planning hard on the low fermentation diet?

And really it's not that hard.

What you need to just pay attention to is actually planning. The planning and the prepping for any kind of diet.

Even eating a healthy diet is going to take some consideration and some time.

But when embarking on the low fermentation diet, you just want to stay away from those high fiber foods and some of those foods that are going to increase the fermentation in the gut.

So as I mentioned, you want to stick to more of those lean proteins, those low fiber vegetables, of course, some of those low fiber fruits and focus on healthy fats.

What's an example of a meal on the Low Fermentation Diet?

So for example, it could look like a meal of maybe a grilled chicken breast with some zucchini with a little bit of ghee or butter on that.

You can also throw a little bit of quinoa on there if you'd like. And you have a nice rounded out meal that provides you with tons of nutrients.

And of course, I have a lot of clients that say, oh, it just sounds so boring.

But one way to kind of spice it up is to use some spices and seasonings that can give it a lot more flavor. And this way you don't feel like you're missing out.

And while you have reduced some of those fermentable carbohydrates and high fiber foods, that gives time for your gut to relax basically and do some of the healing on its own.

So a lot of times I have clients that we just pull things out for a while that are going to cause a lot of that fermentation, bloating, gas, and those kinds of symptoms, and we take 'em out while we let the body just rest while we're kind of healing up the gut.

Therefore, you can eventually, or many, you can put those foods back in. Maybe not all, but many of 'em can return.

And so when you're thinking about, okay, I'm going to do this. I know the foods to take out, I kind of know what I need to focus on with that. Lean proteins, some low fiber vegetable and some healthy fats.

One way to get started on the Low Fermentation Diet

Sometimes what's easier for people if you're not an all or nothing kind of person, is to just kind of start slowly focus on one thing, like I'm just going to take out all cruciferous vegetables.

And when you get really good on that, then you just move on to the next category, which maybe would be, okay, I'm going to take out all the beans.

So you can do this in a low and kind of step-by-step process so it doesn't feel overwhelming and you feel at a loss for what to eat.

And as you're kind of slowly moving through the process of taking the foods out, you're going to start adding more seasonings and spices to your food and playing up with the flavor a little bit.

And you'd be surprised how easily you can have an enjoyable meal and really not miss any of those foods that you actually took out.

And so again, you want to focus on those lean proteins like chicken and fish because you want to make sure you're getting all the amino acids that your gut needs to repair and heal.

And then focusing on those low fiber vegetables, things like spinach and zucchini and maybe some cucumber, can also be really helpful on just reducing your symptoms of bloating or gas.

And then lastly, really focusing also on those healthy fats like olive oil and avocado, and maybe throwing in some nuts or nut butter, coconut butter, all those things are going to be healthy fats to make you feel more satiated.

So now you have a plan, you have an idea, you have a process of how you want to remove some of the foods and what to add in its place. And so the question might be,

Is the Low Fermentation Diet really going to help my gut?

And how, of course, as I mentioned earlier, by taking out some of those foods that create a lot of symptom, not only do you just feel better, but your gut becomes less inflamed.

It's not overworked and really struggling with all of that fermentation going on. And in addition, when we take out some of that stuff and calm things down, it really helps to reset our microbiome.

Remember, all those trillions of bacteria in there need to be in a plentiful amount and in the right kinds of amounts.

That's why our guts can get so messed up so easily because if we're eating a lot of high fermented foods, or even if we're eating a lot of processed or damaged fat type foods, we're putting damage into our gut and therefore dispersing that good microbiome into maybe more opportunistic bacteria.

So by taking things out, calming it down, we can oftentimes help to rebuild that microbiome.

Now, of course, the low fermentation diet is just one way to help reduce some of these symptoms.

Taking a bit of a more holistic approach to your gut health is going to be beneficial overall.


And so what does that mean?

That means that you want to take a look at your lifestyle.

Are you getting enough sleep?

How stressed are you?

If those two things are off, then our gut is going to let you know and you're going to feel it.

And so not only doing the diet, but also trying to get the seven or at least eight hours of sleep per night. And also thinking about that stress factor.

If you have a lot of stress in your life, how can you help to reduce some of that stress?

Maybe meditate or spend an extra 10 or 15 minutes in the morning just kind of relaxing and just taking your time. And this can help to set off a good day.

Maybe it's even doing a workout that helps stress a lot, and it helps our gut and our body.

And so not only the diet, but taking a look at your lifestyle.

And in addition to that, if you have a lot of healing to do, sometimes there are supplements that can be really supportive.

And we have a lot of videos on our YouTube channel about supplementation and a couple of them that I think off right off the top of my head for people really struggling with gut health will be digestive enzymes (blog here discussing this further).

And if there's some healing that needs to be done, even a little bit of l-glutamine (blog here discussing this further).

So to wrap it up, the low fermentation diet can be really helpful for people who are struggling with irritable bowel syndrome or even sibo, which is small intestinal bacteria overgrowth, taking out those fermentable fiber foods and also carbohydrates can help calm down symptoms like bloating and gas and abdominal pain.

In addition to helping to improve your gut microbiome and give your body its time to heal.

And also in addition to the diet, you want to make sure that your lifestyle is kind of lining up with all the good things you're doing with your foods.

I hope that this was helpful for you who are out there struggling with gut issues and trying to figure out what to do next.

Please leave a message below or comment below.

We love to get those as well as subscribe to our channel. Thanks.

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If you'd like to explore any of this information further or obtain an individualized nutrition plan, you can schedule an initial appointment at our clinic.  We also take insurance and some of our clients get full coverage, which is great.

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Or you can just start by downloading our FREE GUIDE: 5 WAYS TO IMPROVE GUT HEALTH  


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