Food rotation – what is it and why you should do it?

Food rotation – what is it and why you should do it?

Do you eat the same thing every day? Have you eaten the same thing for breakfast for the past month/s? Or do you take or buy the same thing for lunch everyday? Do you always eat chicken, broccoli and sweet potato for dinner? Often it is for convenience and habit but we really need to be going outside the box and eating different things. Eating too much of the same food is the primary cause of a food intolerance/sensitivity.   

Most people today eat a maximum of 20 different types of foods, eating the same thing day in and day out. Often the foods people eat are highly processed and lack nutritional value which also does not help. Overexposure to the same foods makes us sick and causes many health issues. People will often say..."but I have eaten this for years. It can't possibly be making me sick". But in actual fact, it is because they have been eating it for so long that it has caused an immune response. Digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, gas, diarrhea, or other symptoms such as skin reactions, migraines, headaches, cloudy thoughts, blurred vision, can also be due to being intolerant to food/s and not being able to digest and absorb them well. 

When we look at how our ancestors ate, they consumed a wide variety of food. Their choice of food depended on the season, the environment, the protein sources they were able to hunt, and what produce was available at that time of the year. They did not have access to supermarkets and could not just go and buy whatever they wanted. Their diet was more varied and they did not experience food intolerances/sensitivities the way it is so commonly seen today. 

By rotating all the foods we eat ensures we get a wide variety of nutrients. Different types of meat have a different amino acid profile and provide different nutrition. Different types of vegetables and fruits also offer a wide variety of nutrients which is why it is recommended to eat a rainbow as different coloured vegetables and fruits have different nutrients. Eating the same foods will limit you in being able to absorb a wide range of nutrients. 

Rotating foods is the easiest way to prevent a food intolerance or sensitivity. Consider for example a person who eats a lot of chicken and eggs. This is pretty common in the fitness industry, especially around body builders. If a person eats this everyday and does not have a break, over time their body can build up an intolerance to it and they will not be able to digest it as well as they used to. By having chicken and eggs once every four days will prevent this from happening. It will also ensure the person gets a wide variety of nutrients, which is aid in better health, less sickness and illness. 

Following a food rotation diet will help to improve gut function and decrease any immune reactions you may be having. If you continue to eat foods that you are intolerant to, it will cause inflammation within the body. People often become used to the symptoms of inflammation e.g. digestive issues (constipation, bloating, gas, diarrhea), headaches, sore joints, weight gain, cloudy thoughts, and they don't realise how inflamed their body is until they stop eating a particular food/s and see what effect it was having on the body.   

The easiest way to do this is do a 4 day food rotation diet where you rotate your source of proteins, fats and carbs everyday so you don't eat the same thing for at least four days. Therefore, what you eat on Monday will not be eaten again until Friday. For example, to cook a specific type of meat/veg/fat and ensure you have enough for dinner and lunch the following day. And then change the type of meat/veg/fat you cook for dinner and have it for lunch the following day.  

The benefits of food rotation include: 

  • Increases food variety so you eat a wide variety of nutrients 

  • Helps to identify if you react to certain foods – be that positive or negative reactions. 

  • Helps to prevent food intolerances and food sensitivities 

  • Helps to improve gut health and digestion, thereby decreasing any gut issues such as leaky gut syndrome 

  • Improves bowel movements 

  • Aids in healing  

  • Helps to reduce cravings as you are eating a wide variety of foods so your body is able to get the nutrients it needs 

  • Helps with balancing the body, e.g. hormones, organs and gland functions, repair and recover from stress and exercise  

  • Reduces inflammation 

  • Decreases the amount of stress the body may be under because when we eat the same foods over and over again, it can cause an immune reaction. By rotating foods, the immune system has a chance to rest from these potentially harmful foods. 

  • Being more conscious of what you are eating 

  • Being more willing and excited to try different foods 

  • Improved health 

  • Helps to reduce and clear fungus and parasites 

When following a food rotation diet, it is a good idea to record the foods you eat and the reactions (positive or negative) you have to any of the foods. Often we may not react to certain foods straight away (unless it is an allergic reaction), and it can take hours or days until it shows up in the body.  Recording what we eat and drink helps us to see if there is a pattern with reactions to certain foods.

A good time frame to follow a food rotation diet is 3-6 months. This will give you a chance to see how you react and how your digestion is. It also gives your body enough time to heal and balance if needed. The time frame may need to be longer especially if you have immune responses to certain foods and need to eliminate them for a longer period of time to enable your body to heal.  

If you would like further information on following a food rotation diet and how it can greatly improve your digestion and health, then contact me below or send me a message. I am able to work with you to identify any food intolerances or sensitivities, and I am able to do testing also. 

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