Hi, if you’re new here, my name is Nisha,
and today I’m talking about IBS, or irritable bowel syndrome. I know this can
be an uncomfortable topic for a lot of people. for some of us it’s a daily
battle with our digestive systems and for others it’s dealing with the
occasional but severe flare-up when we’re really stressed. whatever your
experience is, today I’m sharing tips for healing your IBS and vegan meal ideas
that are IBS friendly. I have IBS. Like millions of other people,
including possibly yourself. and while my symptoms have ebbed and flowed over the last 10 years they have definitely gotten so much better since I became vegan a few
years ago. but my body’s not perfect so I do still have symptoms from time to time,
and these strategies in this video as well as the meal ideas have helped me
feel better when I have those symptoms, so I hope they can help you as well. One of the major triggers for IBS
symptoms is stress. I know that firsthand because I first developed IBS
about ten years ago when I was studying for my first semester of law school
finals, and yes I was a little more than stressed. but snapping out of a stressed
out phase can be difficult, so here are some techniques that I use to help ease
the stress, and I hope they can help you as well. one of these strategies is
meditation. and if the idea of sitting silently and thinking about nothing
sounds overwhelming or boring, then don’t worry because meditation is actually
quite the opposite. it asks you to be fully present and to just experience
everything that you’re feeling and you’re thinking, whether it’s your
stomach growling or your heart beating really quickly. I notice that after just
a few days of regular meditation, even if it’s just for five minutes every morning,
really reduces my overall anxiety levels and helps me feel a lot calmer. if the
idea of a formal meditation sounds boring or something you’re not
interested in, you can still incorporate meditation into your life in other ways.
I really like to enjoy a meditative cup of tea. I take the time to prepare a
really nice cup of tea and then I go find somewhere quiet to enjoy it. before
I drink the tea, I inhale the aroma, I observe the quality and color of the tea,
and I give thanks to the cup of tea in front of me. and when I do drink the tea,
I savor each sip, really focusing on what it feels like to have the warm liquid
against my mouth, as it goes down my throat, and finally settles into my belly.
taking this time to enjoy the tea for myself and to be fully present with the
tea is an easy but effective way that helps me feel a lot less stressed, and I
really encourage you to try it out. Another instant de-stresser for me is to
spend a little time outside in nature. being in nature reminds me that there’s
a whole entire world outside of whatever’s going on in my
head at the moment, and that gives me perspective, which instantly makes me
feel calmer. Even if you live in a big city like I do
in New York City you can always find a little patch of greenery or even some
indoor houseplants that will make you feel instantly happier. One of the strategies that has really helped my IBS symptoms is taking a daily probiotic
supplement. of course I also recommend eating a diet that’s rich in probiotic
foods such as fermented foods, and I have a whole video on vegan foods that are
rich in probiotics. but when our digestive systems are in distress,
sometimes our bodies really need a highly concentrated source of probiotics
taken on a regular basis. I also find that when I take a regular probiotic, I’m
more regular in my movements, so there’s also an added benefit. but if you are
vegan, you do want to make sure that you read the labels on the probiotic
supplements you buy because a lot of probiotics are derived from dairy so
they’re not vegan. I’ve included a few links to vegan probiotic supplements in
the description box below if you’re interested. For some people, specific foods can
trigger IBS symptoms. for me, before becoming vegan, it was dairy products.
specifically ice cream, which I loved, and it’s no surprise because I’m highly
lactose intolerant. if you want to know which foods trigger your symptoms, I
recommend keeping a food diary for at least a week. write down everything you
eat – every meal, every snack, every nibble. and write down the time at which you eat
it and also record any symptoms you have throughout the day, including the time as
well after a few days, you’ll be able to start identifying foods that trigger the
symptoms and you can gradually eliminate them from your diet and see how you feel.
now if you’re wondering “what if my trigger food is chocolate and chocolate
happens to be my favorite food am I supposed to just live my entire life
without it?” No, you don’t have to do that. Once you’ve eliminated the triggering
food or foods from your diet, after a few weeks, you can experiment with gradually
incorporating them back into your diet, one by one. And you might learn something about your body. It might be that chocolate triggers your symptoms but
only if it’s milk chocolate, or only when you’re really stressed out, or only when
you’re on your monthly cycle. So you can still enjoy your favorite foods but be
smart about it. One of the reasons you might be
experiencing IBS symptoms is that you’re not eating enough dietary fiber. Fiber is
what keeps our digestive tracts in regular working order, but unfortunately
most Americans do not eat enough fiber on a daily basis. One thing to keep in
mind is that the type of fiber you might need to add to your diet may depend on
the type of IBS symptoms you have. There are two types of fibe: soluble fiber and
insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber slows things down in your digestive tract so
it’s a great solution to your diet if you experience–everyone’s favorite word–
diarrhea. Sorry. My favorite sources of soluble fiber are oats,
butternut squash, and chia seeds. Insoluble fiber, which is found in
vegetables, legumes and beans, and whole grains, helps to quicken things up in the
digestive tract so it is a great addition to your diet if you are
constipated. In either case, if you currently aren’t eating a lot of fiber, I
recommend to add the fiber into your diet gradually and slowly because if
you’re eating like 15 grams right now and then you suddenly go up to 45 grams
of fiber per day, you’re going to have a hard time adapting and you’re probably
going to have a lot of gas and bloating and cramping which is obviously what you
want to avoid in the first place. My final tip for healing your IBS is to
experiment with a low FODMAP diet. FODMAPs is an acronym for four types of
short-chain carbohydrates that are too long to pronounce in this video, but you
can google it afterwards. And these carbohydrates are found in all
kinds of foods, including a lot of nutritious foods. But they can make those
foods harder to digest, which then causes those uncomfortable symptoms, like gas
and bloating and worse. A typical low FODMAP diet will eliminate all FODMAP
foods for a certain period of time and then you gradually reintroduce these
categories of foods, one by one. There are tons of resources on the internet about
low FODMAP diets and which foods to eat and which to avoid. I’ve included a few
resources in the description box below. But a lot of these diets call for meat
and eggs, which are low in FODMAPs, so I wanted to give you some vegan low FODMAP meal ideas. And the full instructions for all of these recipes can be found on my
blog, which is linked below. First let’s talk about breakfast because there are
certain things you might need to adjust in your diet. There are a fair number of
fruits as well as most wheat containing grains that are high in FODMAPs so
you’ll want to swap out apples and mangoes, for instance, which are high in
FODMAPs, with berries and certain citrus fruits, which are low in FODMAPs. You can easily replace wheat containing grains with oats, quinoa, millet and other types
of pseudo grains that don’t contain gluten. Now for some lunch and dinner
ideas. First I’m making a tempeh rice bowl. Tempeh is made from fermented
soybeans and is a low FODMAP food, but certain other soy products, including soy
beans and soy milk, are high in FODMAPs. The science behind the difference is a
little confusing, but just keep in mind that tempeh and firm varieties of tofu
are low in FODMAPs and good for an IBS diet. For this tempeh rice bowl, start by
marinating the tempeh. This marinade is packed with
delicious, flavorful ingredients that I’m sure you will love. I do steam the
tempeh for about 10 minutes before marinating because it helps remove some
of the characteristic bitter taste. You’ll marinate the tempeh pieces for
two hours or up to overnight, and after marinating the tempeh, you’ll bake
it in the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 to 15 minutes. Now for the veggie
slaw in this rice bowl. I’m using a combination of low FODMAP vegetables but if you want to customize it to your taste or whatever you have on hand, be
sure to consult a low FODMAP food list, and you can find one of those in the
description box below. To dress the slaw I made a tahini-sesame
dressing that really complements the flavors of the tempeh marinade. and for
an extra crunch factor, I’m finishing it with a small handful of sesame seeds and sunflower seeds. Seeds are a great low FODMAP food, but you just don’t want to
overdo it. To serve, mix together some cooked brown rice with the vegetable slaw and serve the tempeh on top. This final dish is for a stuffed acorn squash. Luckily most types of winter squash are low in FODMAPs, and this one makes a
really satisfying dinner. you’ll start by slicing an acorn squash in half. This can
be a bit difficult so I’ve included a link in the description box below on how
to easily and safely cut an acorn squash. To impart some flavor and get the squash nice and browned, I’ve brushed the flesh of the squash with olive oil
along with salt, pepper and fresh thyme. You’ll bake the squash in the oven, flesh
side down, for 40 minutes or until tender. for the stuffing I’m using a base of
quinoa, which is low in FODMAPs. and for a bit more protein, I’m using some canned
brown lentils. most legumes are actually high in FODMAPs, but following a low
FODMAP diet doesn’t mean that you can’t ever have any legumes. Certain legumes
such as lentils are lower in FODMAPs than others, such as kidney beans which
are really high in FODMAPs, and you can have these lower FODMAP legumes in
small quantities, like a quarter cup. Also canned lentils and beans have lower FODMAP values than the dried and cooked variety. To flavor the quinoa and lentils,
I’m adding some low FODMAP ingredients, including olives, pine nuts, spices, herbs,
lemon juice and tahini. Alright those are my tips for healing
IBS and vegan low FODMAP meal ideas. If you enjoyed the video or found it useful,
go ahead and give it a thumbs up, as well as hitting that like button. and if you
have IBS and certain strategies have worked for you, please leave me a comment below to let me know what they are. I’m sure other people would appreciate it as
well. Thanks so much for watching and I’ll see you in the next video.