- Heather Woodruff
How to have Dessert & Keep your Tummy Calm
When it comes to managing your IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) we can get caught up in what we CAN’T eat. But I promise you my digestively challenged friends there is a way to eat that calms your gut (rather than inflaming it) that not only keeps your tummy happy but is delicious and satisfying…
And this includes desserts and sweet treats!
Restrict, restrict, restrict seems to be the foundation of most IBS focused meal plans but when we do this we feel, well, RESTRICTED! As well as, unsatisfied and like we are missing out (because we kinda are!). Something I do different when I work with clients privately or through group programs is focus on replace, replace, replace! If you are removing a gut inflaming food from your plate let’s find you 10 delicious replacements you are excited to eat (yes, it’s possible!).
Today I am focusing on dessert. Why? Because so many lovely humans with chronic trouble believe that committing to a nutritional program to calm and repair their gut, means they will have to give up dessert. I am thrilled to advise you today that this is not true.
Following the steps below and we can have our cake and bloat-free belly, too!
1) Refined Sugar Free
Yes, it is absolutely possible to have a yummy treat that does not contain refined sugar (white sugar, brown sugar, cane sugar, high fructose corn syrup, etc). Nothing bloats our belly like a balloon more than refined sugar. Unfortunately it is present in most dessert recipes and store bought treats.
Which is exactly why I include an in depth refined sugar substitution guide and Sweets & Treats recipe book in the Calm your Gut Program. Some alternatives to refined sugar are: raw honey, pure maple syrup, coconut sugar, unsweetened apple sauce or unsweetened dried fruit (like dates).
2) Made from Foods that are Whole
The next time you’re standing in a lineup at the grocery store pick up a processed candy bar and have a peak at the ingredients. How many of them can you NOT pronounce? If you don’t know what it is, how do you expect your gut to know how to digest it?!
This doesn’t mean we necessarily have to pull out the apron and make every single dessert from scratch. It means we mindfully check the ingredients and ensure we actually recognize them as food. Thankfully there are some pretty amazing food companies out there now making some incredible whole food based treats.
3) Be Brave
Stepping out of your comfort zone to try new treats may be the most mind blowing suggestion I can give you today. The first time I tried chocolate pudding made from an avocado I honestly held my breath a little in dreaded anticipation. But guess what? It was freak’n delicious!
Since then I have tried brownies made from black beans, fudge made from sunflower seed butter, cookies made from chickpeas. Some honestly have been epic fails but many many incredible wins. But you never know until you go for it.
Whenever my toddler refuses to try a new food I remind her how the first time I gave her chocolate she turned her cute little nose up. I exclaim; ‘imagine if you had never tried chocolate?!’ while handing her a piece of kohlrabi. This always gets her #mamawin
My tough love for you - get over yourself and just try it!
4) Easy Does it
Even with the healthiest most IBS friendly desserts on the planet… These are meant to be treats. If I eat a full tub of raw unpasteurized local honey, my belly is going to be angry with me even though it technically is a healthful substitute for refined sugar.
If you are constantly craving sweet anything, this can actually be a sign of microbe imbalance in the gut.
When you are living a life with IBS and chronic tummy trouble there is nothing more confusing than the food you put in your body. The truth is, your meals can help repair your gut but the wrong choices can actually damage it further and send you into an uncomfortable flare up.
Which is why I will be hosting a FREE web class sharing with you my step by step approach to building a gut healing meal that allows you to confidently put food in your mouth you know will keep your belly happy! Access the class here.