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When veggies are not healthy?

Vegetables are the key to weight loss, disease prevention and health, but sometimes we should reduce the amount of these superfoods in our diet.

Vegetables are essential in our diet.

In almost every article, I call for more cooking and eating more fruit and vegetables.

This is mainly because many people eat too few vegetables. The recommended amount of fruit and vegetables is at least five portions a day (1 portion = vegetables about the size of your fist). However, only 3% of men and 7% of women meet even this minimum!

But for all the good that vegetables give us – in some cases, eating a lot of vegetables can cause problems.


Vegetables make me sick

Interestingly, sometimes, when people start to increase their vegetable intake, they may begin to feel worse. For example, start suffering from bloating, flatulence, etc.


Nothing is more depressing than being rewarded for trying to eat healthier with a stomach ache.

Specifically, if you have eaten little fruit and vegetables in the past and now start eating a lot, you may feel like your stomach can’t digest them. You feel bloated, your stomach hurts, and those gases … and your desire to eat healthy begins to weaken.


Salads and raw vegetables can cause problems in two ways:

  1. Sometimes, it is difficult to eat 1-2 cups of raw vegetables and/or salad (which is what you should eat at each meal) because your stomach “unexpectedly” gets a lot of “rough” food, which is harder for it to digest.
  2. Many people can digest only a small amount of raw vegetables per day. If they eat more, they experience all the symptoms described above.

What to do?

The answer is simple – eat cooked vegetables instead of fresh, for example:

  • Eat boiled or steamed vegetables.
  • Make stews.
  • Use vegetables to make sauces and seasonings (for example – tomato sauces, pesto, etc.).

Cooked vegetables for digestive disorders

So, yes, we need vegetables, but not all vegetables make us look and feel better.

Indigestion can also be a sign of a possible lack of some essential nutrients in the body. Many nutrients enter our bodies as part of dietary fibre. Uncooked fibre can enter the large intestine undigested and is fermented there. The fermentation produces gases that cause bloating and flatulence.

When cooked, dietary fibres break down more easily, and therefore many of the nutrients they contain can be more easily digested and absorbed.

In other words, to avoid unpleasant sensations, it is necessary to determine your individual tolerance for vegetables and to adapt the choice and preparation of vegetables to your own digestive characteristics.


If you have problems with one type of raw vegetable, this does not mean you should eat only processed veggies. Find the ones you like and can safely eat raw and eat them in salads or whole. The rest eat cooked.


The main conclusion is that if you cannot tolerate a particular vegetable, it may be because you are eating it raw. A simple solution that works most of the time is to cook them!


Other reasons why vegetable intake should be limited

Vegetables are a great way to add fibre to your meals and get plenty of nutrients with few calories. Vegetable intake is one of the habits most associated with long-term weight control, health and longevity.

However, sometimes it is better not to eat certain vegetables or vegetables at all.


Runner’s Trots

Anyone involved in endurance sports knows that prolonged periods of intense exercise can cause more than just muscle fatigue.

When you start exercising, blood flows to your muscles and the stomach gets less of it. So, if you’ve recently eaten and the food hasn’t been fully digested – you may experience stomach discomfort and even diarrhoea.

To avoid this, you should avoid eating fibre-rich foods (broccoli, cabbage, asparagus, etc.) a few hours before training or competition.

Before a long run or other prolonged exercise, it is better to eat easily digestible carbohydrates such as bread with peanut butter, bananas or cereal with milk and experiment until you find the right combination for you.


Sodium in canned vegetables

People who want to limit their sodium intake because of hypertension or heart disease should beware of canned vegetables, as they can provide up to half of the recommended daily intake of sodium.

Choose canned vegetables without added salt or low in sodium. To reduce sodium intake in foods such as canned sweetcorn, beans and peas, drain off the liquid and rinse them before use.


Crohn’s disease outbreak

Although not optimal for overall health, during a Crohn’s disease flare-up, you should eat foods that are kind to your stomach and intestines – to help your gastrointestinal tract heal.

During a Crohn’s disease flare-up, fruit, vegetables, and whole-grain products may need to be reduced.


Before or after surgery

For example, after gastrointestinal surgery, such as gastric reduction surgery, most patients will need to abstain from vegetables for two to six weeks.


Irritable bowel syndrome

As with Crohn’s disease, a low-fibre diet can help people with irritable bowel syndrome avoid bloating, abdominal pain, cramps and diarrhoea.


Kidney failure

People with chronic kidney diseases or kidney failure should avoid vegetables high in potassium and phosphorus, as the kidneys are unable to remove these elements from the bloodstream. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, asparagus, mushrooms and Brussels sprouts are on the list of prohibited vegetables for most kidney disease patients.



If you suffer from heartburn, you should possibly avoid acidic vegetables (such as tomatoes and tomato products). When stomach acid comes into contact with acidic foods, the unpleasant symptoms of reflux disease only get worse. To find out which foods are interfering with your digestive tract, it is usually a good idea to have a food diary to track what you eat and how you feel after eating.


Excessive intake of beta-carotene

The rumour that eating too many carrots will turn you orange is true in some extreme cases. This condition (hypercarotenaemia) is considered to be completely harmless.


If you eat too many carrots – some of the molecules formed from beta-carotene may block the absorption of vitamin A, which is vital for eye, bone and skin health, as well as for normal metabolism and immune function. Further studies are needed to determine the optimal intake of beta-carotene.


Key takeaways

Vegetables are an essential part of a healthy and balanced diet.

They are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibre.

In addition, despite their nutritional richness, vegetables are low in calories, making them an ideal dietary staple for people who want to lose weight.

They also help us to feel full for longer.


Eat more vegetables!

But if you feel the symptoms described above – eat them boiled, steamed or stewed.

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