Your Health Nov. 21, 2013 Food Combinations - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Your Health: Nutritionist offers tips for Food Combinations

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Birmingham, AL -

Tis' the season for food, and lots of it!

So, you've try everything to survive these food-feasting holidays without battling reflux and excessive weight. One local nutrition expert suggests a different way of eating healthy.

Most people are getting ready to eat more than their fair share of turkey and dressing and all the trimmings.

Diet and nutrition specialist expert Laurel Tucker says, "When we come up on these holidays and we've got all these sweets and all these stuff we put together and we feel terrible, We sit around and we get sleepy after meals."

So goes the ritual, followed by after-meal sleepiness, gas, heartburn or reflux and eventually extra weight. The 66-year-old Tucker says those are the results of people eating incorrectly and the body having a hard time digesting all that food.

She says proteins and carbohydrates should not be mixed or eaten at the same time. It causes not only reflux but also weight gain.

Tucker says, "Yes, because the body will change it to fat because there's no way to digest it."

There's also a right time to eat, and a right time to drink.

Tucker says, "First thing I see is the turkey but you need the greens, eat that then wait an hour and a half two hours come back and have your dressing with your beans or something like that but don't eat everything all at one time."

Here's what she suggests eating lean meats and vegetables then wait at least 90 minutes to two hours before eating a vegetable and a carb-item, such as green bean casserole or bread. Next, take another one-hour break then enjoy your dessert.

Tucker says, "They will not digest because the body creates an acid enzymes for protein and alkaline enzyme for  carbs when both enzymes get in the stomach at the same time, the alkaline enzymes dilutes the acid enzymes and it takes there and petrifies and causes reflux and that the main reason one of many reasons people have reflux and problems with digestion."

Tucker has worked for years at Organic Harvest, where you can find enzyme products to assist in digesting foods properly.

She says she doesn't get a commission for products sold, and living with an alkaline body and without disease is lifestyle choice. Choosing foods wisely is key to proper digestion, but according to Tucker, there's another common mistake people make during meals:  drinking water and/or tea.
Tucker says, "People should not drink anything when they eat. When someone sits tea in front of them, do not drink it, just let it sit there. The digestive enzymes are created in the mouth the stomach and the intestines in order to digest the food so if you drink, the body is going to dilute all the things the body is trying to do and it turns into gas reflux."

As for skipping meals in order to cut down on calories, that's not the best idea either as it leads to weight gain.

"No, the blood sugar goes up which makes you eat more. We can have what we want we just can't have it all at one time."

The food combinations way of life include fruit separated in four groups: Acid fruit, Sub-Acid fruit,  Sweet fruit and Melon.

When you eat fruits, they should be from the same group, especially melons.

To get a better idea of how to properly combine your food, check out the food combination chart here.

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