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Tummy Troubles – What Can I Eat?

Gastrointestinal problems or tummy troubles are common and being an athlete does not protect you from such a condition.

Published July 23, 2013 10:37

Tummy Troubles – What Can I Eat?
Ginger Tea

Gastrointestinal problems (GI) or tummy troubles are common and being an athlete does not protect you from such a condition. It occurs when the mucous membrane of the digestive tract is inflamed, irritated or infected. Gastrointestinal problems may last from one day to more than a week, depending on the source. The causes of GI distress are numerous, with the most common being:

• Adverse food reaction (lactose intolerance, nut allergies)
• Side effect of medication (antibiotics and anti-inflammatory)
• Illness (celiac disease, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and reflux)
• Food or water based illnesses (lack of safe water supply)
• Stress and nerves

The most common symptoms of gastrointestinal distress are:

• Abdominal pain and cramping
• Bloating
• Constipation
• Diarrhea
• Nausea and vomiting
• Reflux.

A safe diet is generally recommended to WTA players who experience GI distress. It is important to note that foods tolerated differ from player to player. The general guidelines are listed in the table below:

Foods to Avoid or Use Sparingly

Alternative Safe Foods

High fiber foods (whole grains, nuts, raw vegetables)

Peel, cook fruits & vegetables, white breads & dried crackers

Acidic foods (fresh orange & grapefruit juice)

Pear juice, ginger tea and water

High fat foods (fried foods, fatty meats)

Skinless chicken, turkey, tuna, lean lamb

Caffeine (coffee, black teas, coke products)

Herbal teas, ginger ale

Spicy foods (chili peppers, curry, mustard) 

Do not add spices or condiments to foods

Alcohol

Probiotic yogurts, pear juice, ginger drinks

When World War III hits your stomach it is time to eat safe foods!

Thanks to Susie Parker Simmons, MS, RD, MED
Sports Dietician and Physiologist
WTA Sports Nutrition Advisor

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The contents of the Health site are for informational purposes only and should not be treated as medical, psychiatric, psychological, health care or health management advice. The materials herein are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this site. Reliance on any information provided herein is solely at your own risk.

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