A few drops of lemon poured over grated carrots can be enough to upset digestion and destroy the benefits of raw vegetables. Similarly, after eating an apple avocado toast makes it difficult to digest food. Indeed, all products, no matter how healthy they are, do not combine harmoniously. They need to combine well for them to be fully beneficial to us and not create unnecessary fat deposits, as explained by Dr. Kahina Ussedik, a nutritional biochemist, nutritional balance specialist and author of The Extraordinary Power of Food Combinations. Flammarion editions have just been released.
Why do some products mix poorly?
KAHINA USSEDIK. Not all food groups require the same chemical conditions for proper digestion. Growing children can tolerate all combinations because their hormonal and digestive secretions are optimal. But over the years, starting from the age of 20, in some people they decrease. Digesting conflicting foods is more difficult in terms of our internal biochemistry. This leads to poorer absorption of proteins, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants by the body, therefore, a lower supply of nutrients to our cells, hence the appearance of fatigue. On the other hand, well-mixed foods make digestion easier, which leaves more energy for the immune system to protect us from infections. They also reduce the accumulation of abdominal fat as well as poor fermentation in the stomach and intestines, resulting in a better balance of the intestinal microbiota and less digestive discomfort (bloating, acid reflux, etc.).
What are the winning combinations and the ones to avoid?
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Animal proteins (meat, fish, etc.) pair well with acidic foods (raw fruits, vinegar, lemon, pickles, etc.) and with all biochemically neutral foods (dairy products, avocados, green vegetables). , almonds, vegetable oils, spices, etc.). The acids will even make proteins easier to digest. So yes for the fish menu with lemon, spinach and cheese. But not if spinach is replaced with rice or pasta, because lemon will prevent the secretion of enzymes necessary for the digestion of the starch contained in them. Thus, the presence of acid in food prevents the digestion of all foods containing starch: cereals, lentils, potatoes … as well as carrots, beets, pumpkins and celery. The latter, however, can be combined with neutral products and occasionally with animal proteins (maximum twice a week). Warning: All industrially processed foods behave like acids because they contain preservatives.
Can you eat fruit outside of meals?
Raw fruits belong to the group of acidic foods. Therefore, they should be eaten between meals if there are starches on the menu. So no oranges for breakfast if it includes bread, pastries or muesli. On the other hand, an orange, apple, or kiwi is no problem when paired with eggs or cheese. The same goes for lunch or dinner: no raw fruit for dessert after potatoes, lentils, or lasagna. In this case, it is better to opt for compote, since acidic food becomes neutral after cooking.