Thursday, July 30, 2015

Limit starch for fibro diet; kefir iced coffee

Bailey, the cat, enjoys a new lounging spot---an old car seat

Do you experience stomach distress after consuming starchy foods, such as grains or potatoes? You may have starch intolerance which is the body’s inability to completely process carbohydrates (sugars and starches) due to inadequate or absent enzymes needed for their digestion.

Fibro sufferers usually have insufficient enzyme production because of damaged digestive systems due to bowel infections, including candida and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). Starch intolerance goes hand in hand with these problems.

You may be familiar with lactose intolerance. It is the inability to break down lactose in milk products because the enzyme lactase is lacking.  Starch intolerance is the same and produces similar symptoms including gas, cramps, bloating and diarrhea and/or constipation.

Sixty percent of fibromyalgia sufferers have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and 70 percent have symptoms of IBS. These IBS-symptoms are usually triggered by bowel infections, such as an overgrowth of candida or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). Both of these conditons result in an overgrowth of bad bacteria in the gut. Studies show that SIBO occurs in 90 to 100 percent of fibromyalgia patients.

Ingredients for kefir iced coffe

Carbohydrates (sugar and starches) are our body’s primary source of energy. There are three types of carbohydrates: monosaccharides (single sugars), disaccharides (made up of two sugar units) and polysaccharides (made up of complex multiple sugar units). The more complex carbohydrates require specific enzymes to break them down for digestion while simple sugars (monosaccharides) are absorbed directly from the intestine into your blood.

There are two types of starches including amylose (a polysaccharide) and amylopectin (a more complex polysaccharide). Most starchy vegetables (including corn, wheat, oats, barley, many varieties of rice and potatoes) contains 20 -30 percent amylase and 70-80 percent amylopectin. Legumes and some potatoes contain higher percentages (up to 65 percent or more) of amylase. 

Lack of the required enzymes to break down these starches will leave them in the digestive system to cause symptoms of food intolerance. The severity of the symptoms depends on the extent of the enzyme deficiency, and range from a feeling of mild bloating to severe diarrhea. 

Undigested sugars remain in the intestine, which is then fermented by the bacteria normally present in the large intestine. These bacteria produce gas, cramping, bloating, a "gurgly" feeling in the abdomen and flatulence. The distress normally begins about 30 minutes to two hours after eating or drinking foods containing the offending sugar, such as lactose in the case of lactose intolerance. Food intolerance can be confused with food allergies, since the symptoms of nausea, cramps, bloating, and diarrhea are similar.

There is no cure for carbohydrate intolerance. However, one may follow a healing diet where the offending starches and/or sugars are avoided. The Specific Carbohydrate Diet was one of the first eating plans to address carbohydrate intolerance.

 High quality digestive enzymes also may be purchased. They may help with the break down of starches and sugars, and reduce symptoms when used in conjunction with a healing diet.

Mocha iced kefir coffee
We seem to be programmed to want something starchy/sugary so what do you do to curb your craving? I reach for kefir iced coffee. Either plain or mocha does the trick to curb my carb craving.

Plain iced kefir coffee
It's so easy and quick to make and no lactose, if you choose the lactose-free kefir or alternative dairy beverage of your choice.

 Here's the basic recipe:

  • Use extra brewed coffee to make iced coffee cubes. Simply freeze the coffee in an ice cube tray. 
  • When ready to make your iced coffee, pour about 1 cup of plain kefir over the coffee cubes, added to a glass. Sweetened with desired sweetener.
  • For mocha kefir iced coffee, you will need an add-in of 1 T. cocoa powder. 
  • Here's a trick for getting the cocoa to dissolve. Pour about 1/8 cup of heated water into your glass before adding other ingredients. Stir in the cocoa powder. Then, add in the coffee cubes and kefir.
  • Now, sit back and enjoy!


Buba4Turtle said...

That looks super yummy!! I've been wanting to join that drink, but haven't yet. I definitely cannot have any starches. I can feel it afterwards. :(

Thank you for sharing at #ChronicFridayLinkup! I pinned your post to the Chronic Friday Linkup board at

Sheree Welshimer said...

I've really been enjoying this beverage especially with our hot summer. Thank you for hosting the Chronic Friday linkup.

Good said...

Yes I have lactose intolerance and starch intolerance and so many other things I don't care to think about it. i am really enjoying all your informative posts and also the whole community of bloggers at Fibro Blogger Directory who join in each week. Thanks.