I have been following the principles of food combining for about a year now. Food combining has been a total game changer for me. I started when I was going on a holiday vacation. I work out 6 to 7 days a week and at the time I started food combining I was dealing with a lot of guilt around eating and felt like I could not miss a day away from the gym. Also at the time my body was not as near as lean as it is right now and my mindset was poor. So last year, on this holiday trip, I did not have access to working out as much which is not normal for me. I was following food combining for the first time as I was sick of feeling BAD after I ate. I was amazed at how my energy levels went up, how I didn’t feel uncomfortable after a meal and how my stomach was looking so lean. Returning home I kept following and the results kept getting better and better. I was leaning out in the way I had always wanted to lean out. I felt light and energized by the food I was eating and I was at peace with the foods I was eating and my guilt around food was becoming less and less. I was also going to bed with a stomach that was overly full and bloated. This was something I didn’t know was possible as I always thought if you eat all day you will just be bloated by bed. I thought that was how it went, no? Food Combining is just a way of optimizing digestion. It is not a crazy scientific diet, rather a method of eating that has been around for 1,000’s of years and is known in holistic Ayurvedic medicine.

What is food combining?

Food combining is a method of eating that allows you to digest your food in an efficient way and allows you to absorb the most nutrients from your foods. Because all foods do not digest at the same rate and use different enzymes, it is important to understand which combinations are optimal for digestive health. Certain foods together helps optimum digestion while others can make you bloated and cause weight gain.

Here are three tips but before I get into the tips here is one little piece of gold for you :

VEGETABLES! (but not starchy vegetables) digest and go with anything. They are your play it safe card. Have as many veggies with any combo of food at anytime. As long as they are not starchy!

Three tips :

First -

Fruit digests the fastest of all food groups. It takes 30 minutes to digest. Eat fruit in the AM on an empty stomach. Have fresh fruit for in the AM alone or in a smoothie with greens. Wait thirty minutes before eating something else.

Avoid eating fruit after a heavy meal because it does not digest efficiently and can cause bloat, weight gain and discomfort.

Second -

Combining proteins and starches is not optimal for digestion.

Protein digests in approximately four to five hours.

Starches digest in approximately three to four hours.

Third -

When eating a meal pick either a protein or a starch (this can include starchy veggies like sweet potatoes; squash or can be a grain like white rice, quinoa, brown rice, beans, garbanzo beans, lentils.) Once you have picked between a protein or a starch you then combine this with as many nonstarchy veggies as you’d like.

Here is what my day of eating looks like (just an example - take it as a grain of salt) :

Wake up - Warm water w/ lemon

8am (ish) - Breakfast. Fresh fruit or a spirulina smoothie with fruit, a green and a chunk of cucumber

9am (ish) - Second breakfast. Avo toast (GF toast or fresh sourdough). I have a couple of slices with an avocado, lemon, salt & pepper. In addition I will have a coconut matcha latte or a coffee in place of the matcha if I am feeling that.

12pm (ish) - Lunch. A salad with a grain in it, chickpea pasta with veggies and avocado, homemade cucumber and avocado nori roll, veggie stir fry. These are just examples but usually something along the lines of this.

5/6pm (yes, early, this is not everyday but I like to do intermediate fasting but I LOVE breakfast so I choose to eat dinner early and not eat in the evening so I can eat when I wake up) Dinner. Veggie stir fry, some sort of pasta with veggies, vegan curry, portobello mushrooms with broccolini and rice. These are dinner examples of what I eat but it obviously changes from time to time.

BTW - this may look like I don’t eat a lot because I often do not snack. BUT I eat a lot. My portions are big. I often go back for seconds or thirds. Some days are different than others but I eat until I am fully satisfied. This is why I do not feel need to snack. I eat until I feel satisfied and by the time I am ready to eat again it is time for my next meal. I like being able to give my body a break to digest the food vs. putting foods on top of foods. I also noticed by eating until I am satisfied has helped curb feeling the need for “dessert.”

Food combining still seem complicated?

It’s really not. Play around with it and see how you feel. You can experiment for yourself and take what you like from it to apply it into your own life. Try it with whatever diet/lifestyle you are currently on. If you eat animal protein, vegan, vegetarian, etc, etc.

If you want to dive in more - I have e-book ‘s full of info.

Food combining changed my body and my mind. I follow it 90% of the time because I want to and I love how I feel.

Kenzie Burke