Anti-nutrients: What are they and how can they affect us?

Several seemingly healthy food choices can cause health problems. This is why proper care must be given to the symptoms that arise after eating certain foods. Among them, we find legumes and whole grains, as much as a variety of nuts. Naturally, people who are interested in adopting a healthy lifestyle include these food options in their balanced diet plan. But what if their consumption turns into a nightmare?

It is often the case that some people complain as soon as they have eaten a cup of beans or a sandwich made of white bread. Usually this discomforting symptom is interpreted as the body’s inability to process this food. So to avoid future cases with similar negative consequences, people come to eliminate these foods from their diet. It is easier for someone to stop eating beans or drinking milk altogether, rather than try to explain the real reason that causes such discomfort.

Pulses and products containing gluten, among others, include the so-called antinutrients. Although the name refers to extremely harmful ingredients, it is actually not the case. Instead, these antinutrients are ambiguous as to their correlation with digestion or swelling of the stomach or elsewhere. On the other hand, however, their consumption has been scientifically proven that may reduce the sugar levels in the blood and improve the immune system.

So how should we behave towards eventual intolerance of these foods? Is it worth eliminating them completely from our diet or should we give them at least one chance? The truth is found somewhere in the middle, as with everything else in life. In particular, people are encouraged to find the magic balance that allows them to taste as many foods as possible. At the same time, however, the foods that really make them suffer should be eliminated from their daily diet plan.

For example, one can realize that soaked or sprouted beans do not bother him so much or do not cause any discomfort whatsoever. The same may happen with foods that have been made using certain kinds of flour etc. Of course there are people who have to eliminate an entire food category. But this should be decided upon only after medical advice and after having carried out all the required tests. Patients who suffer from celiac disease, for example, should avoid gluten daily and without any exceptions.

If you belong to this group of people or if your doctor has advised you to avoid certain food groups, it is advisable to follow this advice. Otherwise, it is ideal to modify your diet in such a way that will help you to reduce the discomfort that you get from eating specific food, without depriving yourself of many foods.

In conclusion, therefore, the antinutrients found in many healthy foods may cause unpleasant effects in humans. With the proper care and attentiveness, however, these effects are bound to become milder or completely eliminated. It is definitely worth the effort to find what really makes you suffer diet-wise!

Best of Health,

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