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Why You Shouldn't Eat These Foods in Winter

Why You Shouldn't Eat These Foods in Winter

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Winter can seem like a real downer after the beginning of the new year; there are no major holidays around the corner, the weather is bleak, and hearty stews have started to feel a bit boring. It can be tempting to try to cure your cold-weather blues by stocking up on bright, cheerful vegetables at the supermarket, but most chefs and dieticians will warn that buying out-of-season produce is usually a waste of money.

See Which Foods to Avoid in Winter (Slideshow)

Out-of-season produce is shipped over long distances from farms in different climates with different growing seasons. As the fruits and vegetables make their long journey, their natural sugars begin to break down, sacrificing flavor. Vitamins and minerals also disappear in the process of shipping, so your out-of-season produce is actually less nutritious than its in-season counterparts.

So what should you do? Chow down on cheese and dump hot sauce on your canned greens to add flavor? Well, no, actually. Many spicy, sugary, and dairy-heavy foods can be contributing factors to the illnesses we’re more susceptible to during winter, like colds and the flu.

You may be thinking that the best solution to winter food woes is to hide under your covers nibbling waffles until April. That’s simply not true, says Trishna Joshi, lead nutritionist on The Fresh Diet. “The most common food mistake we make in the winter is running straight for high-fat, high-sugar, and high-carb foods when we should be doing the opposite,” says Joshi. “Mother nature provides us with ample produce during this season. By consuming foods in season, we get better flavor, seasonal health benefits, more nutrients, and cheaper prices.”

We’ve listed the top foods you should avoid during the winter months to give you a better idea of what to look for (and what to walk right past) in the grocery store. Click through our slideshow to benefit your health, wallet, and especially your taste buds.


Some foods are best left to the spring, and fresh asparagus is one of them, according to Suzanne Lehrer, culinary manager at Plated. “Anything light green in the store is special to spring,” says Lehrer. “Pick up anything dark green instead for winter — kale, Swiss chard, and escarole.”

Cayenne Pepper

Reaching for the spicy stuff might help clear your stuffy sinuses, but it will wreak havoc on your stomach. Avoid hot foods if you have a cold or the flu.

This article originally published on January 23, 2015.

Food Combinations You Must Avoid: Three Things You Should Never Team With Milk


Protein and milk

According to a Delhi-based nutritionist Anshul Jaibharat, milk should not be teamed with other protein sources as it could cause heaviness and digestive issues in some people. "Those who are looking to lose weight should steer clear of this combination," noted Anshul. However, this combination proves beneficial for people who want to gain weight as well as for growing kids.

"Two protein items should never be eaten together in a same meal. Avoid consuming fish and all types of meat with milk," explained Shilpa Arora ND, a renowned Health Practitioner, Nutritionist and certified Macrobiotic Health Coach. .

Milk should not be teamed with other protein items

Sour ingredients and milk

This one is a no brainer acidic and citrusy items should not be teamed with milk until you really want milk to change to cheese in middle of your stomach. "Fruits rich in vitamin C should never be teamed with milk," noted Shilpa.

Fruits and milk

This will come as a shock but experts suggest not combining milk with any type of fruit. Ayurveda suggests consuming milk and fruits separately. The only types of fruits that can be combined with milk would have sweet and buttery properties like mangoes, avocados, figs, dates et cetera. Milk is a type of animal protein which may cause digestive issues, acidity and fermentation in the gastrointestinal tract when teamed with certain fruits. Bananas are usually the most commonly teamed fruit with milk, expert strictly talk against this alliance. Ayurveda expert at Dr. Vaidya's, Dr. Surya Bhagwati describes this combination as an incompatible one that can douse the digestive fire and disrupt the intestinal flora. "It may also cause congestion, cold, cough, rashes and allergies," noted Dr. Bhagwati.

Bananas should not be teamed with milk

While it may look like an impossible task to keep a track of what ingredients you end up teaming in your regular meals, a casual chat with a certified nutritionist may give you a basic idea about how to go smartly about teaming some of the most regular and everyday food items.

Why You Should Not Eat Fast Food

Considering the ever-increasing pace of life in big cities, sometimes it can be easy to lose oneself in overwhelming routine. Being in a hurry all the time, a regular citizen may have no time for satisfying even basic needs such as sleep and nutrition. This is probably why seeing sleeping people in public transport is so common, and why fast food restaurants are crowded all the time. Sleep deprivation in big cities is a well-known problem, and people are gradually becoming more aware of the importance of sleep. In the case of fast food, however, things are not that simple. Even though the majority of people know about the dangers of eating food from McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, and similar places, they still go there. The factors causing such behavior should be analyzed separately. Instead, this paper focuses on the reasons why you should quit eating fast food as soon as possible.

The most obvious reason everyone is aware of is the increased risk of developing obesity. Sometimes, being overweight is caused by health problems or psychological issues. However, much more often, becoming overweight is evoked by dysfunctional eating habits and the regular consumption of fast food. According to research, people eating fast food regularly develop much higher risks of gaining extra weight. They are also more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, not only adults are exposed to these risks–teenagers and children are also under threat. Throughout the last 30 years, the rates of adolescent obesity have tripled. For children, this index has doubled over the same period of time. This might be related to sophisticated advertising, but facts remain facts: fast food leads to obesity, and all age groups are at risk (Lifehack).

Unlike organic food, which is by default created from pure, natural ingredients, fast food often has a bunch of dubious ingredients in it. To start with, all kinds of flavor enhancers are added into it so that it tastes and smells better. Conservatives and food preservatives may be used as well–in particular, tertiary butylhydroquinone, which is made from similar ingredients as petroleum. As if this was not enough, fast food may contain the remainders of drugs and antibiotics. How do they get in there? The good news is that fast food does contain real meat. The bad news is that animals are kept in such awful conditions that they often suffer from a number of diseases. To deal with this problem, fast food manufacturers may add antibiotics to animals’ nutrition–later, they can get into your body when you eat your next chicken burger (SheKnows).

Along with the risks of developing obesity and pumping your body with doubtful chemicals, eating fast food often means exposing almost every organ of your body to dangers. For example, it becomes much easier to get kidney diseases: because fast food is often salty and greasy, it increases blood pressure, makes you want to drink all kinds of soda drinks (which are unhealthy in their own way), and affects kidneys adversely. Besides, due to high amounts of cholesterol and triglyceride contained in fast food, your cardiovascular system suffers as well. This is not to mention the fact that processed fats in fries and other junk food, when supplied to the brain instead of nutrition, affect cognitive abilities in a negative way. In particular, according to research conducted on rats, a week of daily fast food consumption caused memory impairment in test subjects. And, as if this was not enough, junk food increases your chances to get cancer (Beauty and Tips).

As it can be seen, cheap and tasty food is not what your body needs. To start with, when eating fast food regularly, you put yourself (or your children, if you tolerate their fast food habits) at risk of developing obesity, and possibly type 2 diabetes. Some crucial organs of your body such as kidneys, heart, and brain, suffer from junk food immensely. And, if adverse health effects are not enough for you, think about preservatives, antibiotics, and other chemicals you stuff your body with when eating fast food.

How to cook low-calorie comfort food

Heading back to work after Christmas isn't traditionally the most fun time. Early starts and cold, dark mornings can leave us feeling somewhat low and down in the dumps &ndash and that's without picking up the inevitable office cold to boot.

For many of us, food is a comforter at this time of year, something to warm us up and make us feel happier about the short days and lack of sunshine. Choosing the right foods during winter can also help to make sure that you're giving your body the nutrients it needs to keep the immune system in check, ready to ward off your colleague's cold just when it's needed.

Yet, as we all know, comfort food can easily lead to excess calories and, before you know it, weight gain &ndash the opposite of what anyone is trying to achieve in January. However, there are plenty of filling, warming options that you can make at home, which should fulfil the need for comfort food, as well as pack in plenty of nutrients to keep your health in check at the same time.

Here are my top tips for cooking winter-warming foods, but keeping your calorie intake down:

1. When cooking or frying, avoid using too much oil or try to measure the amount of oil you use, keeping it to roughly one teaspoon a person. This can significantly reduce the calorie content of your final dish.

2. Whatever you're eating, try and include at least one portion of vegetables with it (if not, two). This way you boost the fibre and nutrient content of your meal, helping you to be full and satisfied, but without adding too much to the calorie content. It's win, win. Vegetables are also full of nutrients such as vitamin C, which can help to support the function of the immune system at a time when you need it the most.

3. Try swapping some of your meaty meal options for plant alternatives such as beans, nuts and pulses, or even trying out the popular "Meat-Free Monday", which will help to boost the fibre content of your meals &ndash something that most of us need to eat more of all year round.

4. When using cheese, it's best to grate it and sprinkle over your dish. This helps it to go just that little bit further, while also reducing the calorie content of your meal.

5. Swap creamy sauces for tomato-based ones where possible.

6. Use herbs and spices to flavour and leave out the butter and salt in recipes. Experimenting with new flavours can be interesting too, giving your taste buds something different to enjoy.

To help you decide what to cook this evening, here are 9 of my favourite winter recipe ideas:

Remember that when you're reaching for food for comfort, make sure you take time to eat, digest and enjoy, and always avoid eating too much on the go.

1. Fish and chips (but not from the local chippy!)

Try making some fresh steamed fish of your choice, which is full of healthy fats and protein, and combining it with peas and/or beans and some homemade sweet potato wedges tossed in paprika. This is a great, flavour-rich and nutrient-dense option. The government also recommends that we should try to aim for two portions of fish a week (one of which should be oily) so this helps you move towards that goal too.

A perfect winter-warming food, soups are quick, warm and filling, and they allow you to use up all sorts of leftovers. I tend to add anything that I need to use up in the fridge to my soups &ndash carrots, broccoli, potatoes and greens such as spinach or spring onions. Add herbs and spices to alter the final flavour to taste. If you're after a great winter soup recipe, check out my minestrone and homemade scones recipe here.

3. Homemade pizza

You don't have to be a pizza chef to knock one out try using pitta bread, ciabatta or even a couple of wholemeal wraps as the base. Scattering the top with tomato sauce (or purée), plenty of vegetables and any other toppings of your choice, plus some grated cheese. Pop them in the oven and voilà &ndash you have a pizza in about 10 minutes. Quicker than a takeaway.

4. Chicken and vegetable pie

Swap the more fatty pastry for mashed potato on top and make sure you include plenty of vegetables such as mushrooms and broccoli with your chopped chicken filling for extra fibre and nutrients.

This is one of the easiest and simplest healthy meals you can make and you can toss in pretty much any ingredients you want. Try adding plenty of vegetables such as baby corn, onion, peppers or green beans. I quite like to use bean shoots instead of noodles, but either will work. You can also add in some chicken or fish, or tofu/nuts to the dish to make sure you're getting some protein and iron, which helps to support the immune system and reduce tiredness and fatigue. Iron is a must in the winter months. To flavour you could also add 100 per cent peanut butter or a few splashes of soya sauce.

6. Beans on (wholemeal) toast

Sounds simple, and it is, but choosing wholemeal bread and adding a little cheese to the top makes this option completely balanced &ndash ticking off all your food groups, giving a great balance of proteins and also offering some iron, calcium and fibre too.

7. Mac and cheese (yes, really)

If you're looking for something that is creamy and/or cheesy to satisfy your needs, why not try some homemade macaroni and cheese? Make using wholemeal pasta and add in some greens like broccoli, kale or spinach. All these will give you a boost of extra nutrition, add to your five-a-day and help you get a good dose of those all-important greens.

Quiches and fritattas are also great comfort-food options, as they are made with eggs and so contain protein, iron and zinc. If you can, fill them once again with other healthy ingredients such as dark green leafy vegetables, beans, fish or meat this can make another really balanced and wholesome meal.

9. Vegetarian Mexican enchiladas

This is another of my favourite quick and warming recipes. Packed with iron and protein (plus counting towards your five-a-day) these are not only delicious, but also top up your nutrient stores and boost your fibre intake. Check out my Mexican Enchilada recipe on my website.

There are plenty of other recipes that you could try at this time of year. Just remember to try and keep them them delicious and healthy &ndash you'll feel much better for it. Happy New Year!

7 Foods that You Must Stop Reheating Right Away!

If you have spinach or any green leafy vegetables, carrot, turnip or even celery, avoid reheating them in the microwave. These nitrate rich vegetables when heated again can turn toxic, releasing carcinogenic properties, which are generally cancerous in nature. Spinach contains high amount of iron, hence heating and reheating spinach may oxidize the iron present in spinach. Oxidation of iron generates dangerous free radicals which are known to cause many diseases including infertility and cancer.

Nitrate rich vegetables heated again can turn toxic, releasing carcinogenic properties​ Photo Credit: Istock

You may be surprised, but rice comes under this category too. According to Foods Standards Agency (FSA), you could suffer from food poisoning by eating reheated rice. This is due to the presence of highly resistant bacteria called Bacillus Cereus. Heat kills these bacteria, but it can produce spores that are toxic in nature. Once rice is reheated and is left out at room temperature, any spores it contains can multiply, further causing food poisoning on consumption.

Heat kills these bacteria, but it can produce spores that are toxic in nature​

We all know, eggs are a rich source of protein, however, cooked egg or boiled egg can cause serious harm when exposed to heat again and again. Once you have cooked eggs, eat them immediately but if it is kept for a longer period, don't reheat, rather just eat cold because high protein food contains lot of nitrogen. This nitrogen may get oxidised due to reheating, further causing cancer.(Also read: Cloud Eggs: A Unique Way of Making Eggs is Going Viral)

Once you have cooked eggs, eat them immediately​

You would know, piping hot chicken does taste so delectable, however, if you are saving the curry for the next day, do remember to not heat it again and again. The protein composition in this staple completely changes when it is taken out of the refrigerator to heat. This can cause problems in the digestive system. Make sure you are not heating it on high temperature.(Also read: 10 Simple Ways to Keep Chicken Moist and Flavorsome)

The protein composition in this staple completely changes ​

Potatoes being a staple are the best and easiest to store, reheat and consume. Unfortunately, you would need to think again. Potatoes are a rich source of vitamin B6, potassium and vitamin C, however, if they are reheated again and again, chances are they might produce Clostridium Botulinum (bacteria causing Botulism). Even if you leave the cooked potatoes out in room temperature, the production of bacteria will only increase. So if you want to avoid the growth of bacteria, best is to keep them refrigerated or throw them away if not being consumed within 1-2 days.

Potatoes are a rich source of vitamin B6, potassium and vitamin C​

It is recommended to eat mushrooms as soon they are prepared. Ideally, they shouldn't be stored to consume next day as it is a powerhouse of proteins and have generous amounts of minerals and by reheating them, you are breaking these proteins further, causing havoc in your digestive system. Hence heating them will generate toxins which contains oxidized nitrogen and free radicals. Even if you are keen on storing mushrooms for the next day, make sure you eat them cold.(Also read: 5 Amazing Reasons to Add Mushrooms to Your Daily Meals)

It is recommended to eat mushrooms as soon they are prepared​

One of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acid is cold pressed oil like flaxseed oil, olive oil and canola oil. Omega-3 fat is very sensitive to temperature as it breaks and becomes rancid above 40 degree centigrade. Therefore, never heat cold pressed oil before consumption.(Also read: Will Re-Using leftover Cooking Oil Harm Your Family? Read This)

One of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acid is cold pressed oil

These 10 Foods You Eat All The Time Are Making It A Lot Harder To Go To Sleep

Groggy today, but not sure why? It may have something to do with what you ate for dinner last night. While it's a well known fact that you shouldn't be slamming coffee and sweets right before hitting the hay, it turns out a lot of healthy foods may also be preventing you from getting those ZZZs.

1. Cruciferous Vegetables

According to new research aggregated by Eat Clean, certain veggies are better eaten at lunch. Cruciferous vegetables&mdashlike broccoli and cauliflower&mdashare loaded with vitamins that are great for you, but they also carry a large amount of insoluble fiber, which takes forever to digest. Holistic nutritionist Elissa Goodman explains that if you eat these vegetables before bed, "your body will still be working on digesting it while you drift off," which will in turn keep you from getting a comfortable night of sleep.

Red meat, like steak or ground beef, is high in protein and has a similar effect on the body as the cruciferous vegetables mentioned above.

3. Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce is another veggie-based favorite to avoid. Because of its high acidity, it's often the cause of morning-after heartburn and indigestion. You can still eat a bowl of spaghetti for dinner, but dietitian Alissa Rumsey says it's best to eat it at least 3 hours before going to bed. Spicy foods, which are also notorious for causing heartburn, make for an extra restless night of sleep because they raise your core body temperature. So if you're wondering why you had a nightmare after munching on some spicy penne arrabiata, now you have an answer.

4. Cured Meats And Cheeses

Cured meats and cheeses are great for a daytime picnic, but not for dinner. If you planned on ending your day with a fabulous charcuterie platter, reconsider moving it to brunch: Cured meats and cheeses contains tyramine, an amino acid that makes you more alert.

5. Dark Chocolate

The sneaky devil&mdashwhich can carry up to a quarter of the caffeine you'd find in an average cup of joe&mdashalso contains amino acid that makes you alert, similar to the one found in cured meats and cheeses. Basically, dark chocolate is double the energy, making it a much better snack for the afternoon than the middle of the night.

This one should come as no surprise, but it's actually your afternoon coffee drinking that can have more of an effect on your sleep than you would expect. Caffeine can remain in your system for hours, so it's best to avoid it for several hours before going to bed.

Even though a glass of red wine can leave you feeling v. sleepy, alcohol is actually very disruptive to your sleep cycle and has negative effects on your later REM stages.

We've all heard it before: soda is really just not good for you. Despite it's scary side effects, it's also awful for falling asleep. It's full on sugar, which leaves you wide awake, and has even been connected to restless sleep.

9. Orange Juice

Orange juice is not a good pre-bedtime drink for all the reasons you'd think&mdashit's extremely acidic, which is never a good idea before bed, regardless of if you suffer from reflux or not. It's also very sugary, which, as you know, isn't helpful for those trying to fall asleep more easily.

10. Water

It seems counterintuitive, but drinking too much water before bed is likely to interrupt your sleeping pattern for bed. That's because water=urination, and you're most likely going to want to get up and out of bed in order to do that. Eat This, Not That recommends hydrating more during the day and waning your H2O intake a few hours before you normally go to sleep.

Wondering What to Eat When Sick? May These 41 Recipes Be Thy Medicine

A hypothetical: Your germy kid gave you the lurgies. You’re already at max Tylenol modern medicine won’t help you now. Hmm, you think, What to eat when sick? Well, sniffler, hold on to your handkerchief! These recipes for delicious garlic broth, chicken and rice soup with peppy chile oil, and soothing (booze-free) green tea toddies are practically made for days when you’re feeling worse for wear. They all lean on do-gooder ingredients—ginger! ferments! heat!—that can help boost your body’s physical—and let’s face it, emotional—defenses. Sure, you should also drink plenty of liquids, get loads of rest, and seek the (real) advice of an actual medical professional (which I am not). But none of that quite hits like a soothing bowl of umami-packed veggie noods. When you’re stuck on what to eat when sick, consider these 77 recipes the antidote—at least to indecision.

6 Perfect Recipes for Winter Meals

Chilly weather can bring on a change in appetite, as you leave behind the light summer salads and grill-out foods of summer for heartier, stouter meals that will fill you up and keep you warm all winter long.

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But the cold truth is that no weather warrants unhealthy eating habits. Just as you shouldn’t overdo ice cream during the dog days of summer, you shouldn’t live on a steady diet of hot chocolate and warm cookies during winter.

Winterizing your diet can be healthy — and tasty — if you add a few favorite cold-weather foods. Start with these recipes for some hearty, delicious meals.

White Bean Stew with Rosemary and Spinach

Combining carrots with a mix of greens (celery and spinach) and protein-rich white beans, this vegetarian stew is a perfect batch-cooking concoction and ready to eat in just 30 minutes. Besides getting a bunch of vitamins A, C and K, it’s also rich with iron, potassium and fiber. Just be sure to use low-sodium beans to keep the salt content under control.

Hearty Minestrone Soup with Farro

Veggies? Check. Protein from beans? Check. Healthy grains? Check.

While cabbage, carrots, onions, tomatoes and kidney beans make for a great classic minestrone soup, it’s the ancient grain farro that kicks things up a notch and gives the soup a nutty flavor. Just be sure to opt for no-salt kidney beans to keep things as healthy as possible.

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Mac and cheese is classic comfort food and a staple during the cold winter months, a warm and creamy dish that’s also filling. And while there are all sorts of recipes that feature different twists, this option includes butternut squash as a healthy alternative and also calls for healthier ingredients – reduced-sodium broth, fat-free Greek yogurt – that will leave you feeling satisfied without the nagging guilt of consuming too many calories.

Spicy Beef Chili with Butternut Squash

Yes, butternut squash is a perfect winter vegetable and not just because of its taste. The popular gourd is also quite versatile. Black beans, ground sirloin, onions and red bell pepper make this a flavorful chili dish. To make sure you don’t drive this hearty meal too high on the calorie meter, be sure to use light sour cream, low-fat cheese and low-sodium beans.

Creamy Turkey and Vegetable Casserole

Casseroles are perfect for winter eating. Not only does it give you a variety of vegetables (and, thus, lots of nutrients and vitamins) but it’s perfect for freezing and saving. This particular recipe includes turkey, a delicious source of protein, and a medley of vegetables, including potatoes, zucchini, peppers and carrots. And while creamy soups can often be more unhealthy than broth-based soups, this particular recipe calls for a low-fat dairy and chicken broth mix that gives you that creaminess without the calories.

Soba Noodle and Mushroom Soup

Winter meals are more than just casseroles and chili and you can liven up your dinner with this heart-healthy soup. While the nutty-tasting soba noodles and earthy mushrooms make a perfect flavor pairing, the potassium-rich spinach and protein-packed tofu deliver nutrients and vitamins your body needs.

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What Not to Eat If You Have Crohn’s Disease

If you have Crohn’s disease, you know how awful a flare-up can be. Symptoms like stomach pain, cramping and diarrhea make you feel miserable and put a damper on your plans. Could your diet be contributing to your symptoms?

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A burger or bowl of ice cream isn’t likely to cause a flare-up, says registered dietitian Anna Taylor, RD. But if you’re actively dealing with symptoms, the foods you choose might make things worse.

“There’s not a specific diet for Crohn’s disease,” she says. “Foods that might be a problem for one person can be totally fine for others.” And while there isn’t much research about Crohn’s and diet, there are some usual suspects you might want to avoid when your gut is giving you grief.

Crohn’s disease: Foods to avoid

Taylor emphasizes that you shouldn’t try to manage the disease with food alone. “Crohn’s isn’t something you can cure with diet – you need to have a health care team treating this,” she says. “But if you’re having a flare-up, these are some foods you might want to avoid.”

1. Whole grains

The high amounts of fiber in foods like whole-grain bread, whole-wheat pasta, popcorn and bran can cause a lot of traffic through the gastrointestinal tract. “That can be irritating to someone experiencing a disease flare,” Taylor says.

2. Beans

Beans are a wonderfully nutritious food — when you’re feeling good, Taylor says. But during a flare, their high fiber content and tendency to cause gas is a lose-lose.

3. High-fiber fruits and vegetables

“Some people think they can’t eat vegetables with Crohn’s, and that’s not true,” Taylor says. “But you do have to be careful during a flare.” Aim for cooked veggies rather than raw to avoid irritating your gut. And avoid fruits and vegetables with skins and seeds intact.

Many people find that bananas or canned pears are gentler than an apple or bowl of raspberries, for instance. Also steer clear of gassy veggies like broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts. “They’re high in fiber and gas-producing — kind of a double whammy,” Taylor says.

4. Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds can be rough — literally. Their sharp edges can be irritating to the lining of the GI tract. “But people often tolerate ground nuts or seeds,” Taylor says, so consider giving smooth peanut butter or sesame tahini a try.

5. Alcohol and caffeine

Alcohol can be irritating to anyone’s GI tract, especially people who are already experiencing stomach symptoms. That goes for all types of drinks, Taylor says. “Beer, wine and liquor are not great choices if you’re having symptoms.”

Caffeinated drinks, too, can be a problem. “Caffeine increases the wave-like motion of the GI tract, which is what propels waste through the system,” she says. “If you tend to have diarrhea with your Crohn’s flare, caffeine is not your friend.”

6. Sweeteners

Sugary drinks like soda, fruit juice and lemonade can also cause more diarrhea when you’re having a flare-up. So-called “sugar alcohols” are also a problem. These are sweeteners used in sugarless gum, candy and some drinks.

They go by names like xylitol, sorbitol and maltitol, which are listed on the nutrition facts label. “In many people, these ingredients are poorly absorbed, which can cause gas, bloating and diarrhea,” Taylor says.

7. Dairy

Contrary to popular belief, many people with Crohn’s can actually consume dairy products without grief, Taylor says. But when you have symptoms, whole-fat dairy products (like whole milk, ice cream and sour cream) can be a problem, so step away from the fettuccini alfredo.

8. Spicy foods

Odds are, you won’t be tempted to reach for the hot sauce if you’re having Crohn’s symptoms. “Most people who have a flare aren’t eating spicy chili or burritos,” Taylor says. Trust that instinct. Spices like chili powder, cayenne pepper and spicy curries can add heat to an on-fire GI tract.

9. Greasy, fatty foods

“It’s hard for your body to deal with the amount of fat in fast food and other greasy, fatty foods like sausage or salami,” Taylor says. Save the drive-through for another day.

A healthy Crohn’s disease diet

Not everyone with Crohn’s disease has the same food triggers, Taylor says, so you might need to do some sleuthing to figure out what works (and doesn’t work) for you. Try keeping a food journal — jotting down what you ate and any symptoms you notice — to look for clues about the foods that make your stomach unhappy.

When you aren’t having symptoms, though, try to eat a balanced diet. You don’t want to regularly shun healthy foods like whole grains, veggies or beans. “Malnutrition can be a problem for people with Crohn’s disease, so only avoid these foods during a flare-up,” she says.

Managing this lifelong disease can be a challenge, and a dietitian can help you manage your diet.

“Crohn’s is different for every person, so work with someone who can help you design an individualized plan,” Taylor says. “If you have a dietitian in your corner, they’ll be available so that when you have a problem, they can steer you in the right direction.”

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