Recent Stomach Issues

Hi everyone!

I made a super easy, yet tasty dinner the other night. I love simple meals that can be thrown together quickly! I decided to put my broccoli slaw to use and randomly threw together a mix of foods…needless to say, it turned out quite tasty!

That would be a mix of brown rice, chicken, sauteed broccoli slaw, and salsa! Like I said…totally random…but stirred all together and the different flavors were fabulous 😀

I served this along with a small salad:

In the bowl: spring mix lettuce, cucumbers, red peppers, carrots, italian dressing, and some low-fat feta cheese! I LOVE adding some feta to my salads. It makes the flavor a bit more interesting. And I think low-fat feta tastes just as good as the full-fat stuff! YUM.

Um, and last night I tried nut butter on a sweet potato for the first time…or PB2 to be exact…but why haven’t I done this before?? It was amazing! I totally see this as being a new favorite for me :).


So, I mentioned that I was having some digestive issues the other day and I wanted to elaborate on that a bit! Ever since I stopped doing the cleanse I’ve been feeling really bloated and have been having some, ahem, “issues” going to the bathroom (sorry if that’s tmi for you!). I won’t go into detail on those issues…but let’s just say it’s been a bit more of a challenge than it was during and before the cleanse.

Seriously, I feel so incredibly uncomfortable! My pants are feeling a bit tighter and the bloating is visibly noticeable (to me anyway).


That’s supposed to be a bloated bird haha. Anyway, I don’t feel well and I’m starting to get really frustrated. I’m beginning to wonder if I may have a slight intolerance or sensitivity to certain foods that I wasn’t eating during the cleanse and have since added back into my diet.

The main things that I took out of my diet during the cleanse, and that I consume on a consistent/daily basis are:

  • Wheat
  • Coffee
  • Dairy

Of course, I also cut out alcohol, refined sugars, fried foods, and corn and white starches. However, those are not things that I have on a consistent basis at all.

Could I have a slight intolerance or sensitivity to wheat or dairy? Could coffee be aggravating my digestive system? I don’t think I have a serious intolerance or anything because I don’t get any intense symptoms after consuming food…but I’ve done some reading and have found that bloating and constipation are two definite symptoms.

So, why wasn’t I noticing this before the cleanse? Well as I’ve said before, I have been diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome so I have experienced bloating and constipation before- it just hasn’t been something that’s lasted this long for a while- and I’ve thought of it as normal. Perhaps giving my body a break from these foods provided my digestive system with relief and then reintroducing them is wreaking some havoc? I really don’t know…I’m just kind of trying to think this out haha.

I found it interesting that IBS is a symptom of food intolerances. And there were also a couple other symptoms associated with food intolerances that caught my eye: fatigue and headaches. I often find myself way more tired than I should be for the amount of sleep that I get. A couple of years ago I even consulted with my doctor about it and we couldn’t figure anything out. I also have an abnormal amount of headaches. I generally get at least several a week. It’s SO annoying!


Could wheat or dairy or even coffee be the cause or at least contribute to some of these problems? Maybe. All I know is that my stomach and digestive system felt much better on the cleanse than they do now.

I’m thinking of trying to eliminate each of these things from diet for a few days to see how I feel while not consuming them, and then see how my body reacts when I start having them again. I really don’t want to see a doctor for this, so I want to play around with it on my own and see if I can find the culprit of my stomach woes.

What are your thoughts on this?


About In Sweetness and In Health

I'm Lindsay! I'm a 23 year-old graduate student in occupational therapy. I love all things health and fitness related and this blog will document my life as I learn to really love myself, try to stop worrying so much about my body, and truly take advantage of all the sweet things that life offers us.

Posted on March 28, 2012, in About Me, Dinner, Health, Recipe. Bookmark the permalink. 55 Comments.

  1. Those three things are very common intolerance foods. I know before I cut out gluten, I would get headaches like crazy, bloated, gas, constipation, diarrhea, the whole nine yards. After getting tested and cutting it out, it’s a LOT better, but I still have like “flare ups” I guess you could say at times. Who knows, I could be a little lactose intolerant too, but I suggest you either get tested or just cut out all three things for a few weeks, then introduce them one at a time and see what happens? Good luck girl! I know it’s NOT fun to feel bloated and crappy all the time.

  2. Unfortunately, I don’t have any advice, but plenty of sympathy. :/ Sorry you aren’t feeling great. I hope you can get it figured out soon, because I can imagine how miserable you’re feeling!

  3. Bummer 😦 Oats do the SAME thing to me, it sucks when you want to eat it but it causes you pain and discomfort. I wish I could offer some more advice or help! I’m sending major detective skills so you can figure it out pronto! 🙂 ❤

  4. Looks like a bloated bird to me! haha – poor little guy. I hope you feel better soon. When I get GI issues, stress is usually the culprit. It took me a looooong time to put those two together though. I actually thought I might have a gluten intolerance there for a while, but I was happy to discover that wasn’t the case.

  5. I’ve never been diagnosed, but I have a lot of the same symptoms. Now I take a probiotic everyday and it helps a lot. When I stop taking the probiotic, however, I feel bloated and achy…which is what happened to me last week. I don’t want to get too dependent on it (if that’s even possible?), but when I take it, it does wonders!

  6. I definitely feel you on stomach issues. I had some really bad ones for months. I wouldn’t go to the bathroom for days … Sometimes up to 10. I would be visibly bloated and develop a rock hard bubble that you could easily see and feel. I tried different thing with my diet and it didn’t help. I eventually had a colonoscopy and they found that I had a slow moving colon and put me on meds. Those didn’t help either. Ultimately, I found that my problems are at there worst during the school year. When I do have to work…everything is peachy. I am thinking mine might be due to stress. Good luck finding some relief. I know how difficult and uncomfortable you feel!

  7. Wow girl, I definitely relate to all of this. I am constantly tired (which I usually blame on my Chronic Fatigue), but I also have terrible bloating issues along with occasional head aches. I have considered food intolerance before, but the truth is I don’t even know where to start. I know I probably should get tested, but I usually just push the symptoms to the back of my mind. Thank you for bringing this back to my attention! I hope you feel better girl, keep me updated on what you find out!

  8. Gahh Lindsay I am sorry you are feeling this way right now! Although I have never had an intolerance to any food, I did have severe stomach issues when I was eating next to zero grams of fat. None of my food was being absorbed and I just felt awful all of the time. I am not saying that is your issue of course, just that I understand! I figured it out by looking closely at my diet and realizing how freakin off I was with this macronutrient! Like a few other people said here, I would get tested, see a doctor and then try an elimination plan for a few days to try and figure out what’s up!

    Good luck pretty lady, you do not deserve to feel like this at all!

  9. good luck! i think you can definitely gain some insight on your own before going to a doctor! oh, and Brews is in Granville. We MUST go when you come back!

  10. Hi Lindsay, I’m sorry about what you are going through. I don’t have any advice as I have not had any of these issues, but a friend of mine does. After many Dr. appointments she did some of her own research. She now follows a paleo diet and all of her symptoms are gone. Her energy is also very high now. I know that it can’t be easy changing your diet, but you can always look into it and try to play around until you find what works for you. Hope you are feeling better soon!

  11. Yuck…been there. I cut out dairy completely EXCEPT for hard cheese like cheddar and parmesan bc they are lactose-free (or very low lactose). It helped my stomach A TON and since then I have had dairy a few times and felt awful for a week or so after. I have also cut way down on gluten and things are even better. The absolute best thing for me and how I feel is not to have either, but it’s not always 100% realistic for me since I don’t eat a ton of meat either. I am a big veggie, egg and protein shake eater so it’s fairly easy for me to do this, but I know it’s hard for people who eat a lot of dairy and/or gluten regularly. I would give yourself more than a few days off of each to really notice a difference. A few weeks probably… 🙂

  12. Miserable!!! Sorry this is going on–I have similar issues. When I’ve cut things out before, my doctor said I needed to cut them out for at least 2-4 weeks before I’d see a difference, so I’d suggest going with that timeline. Hope you get to the bottom of this soon. It’s a horrible way to live, that’s for sure!

  13. i just bought some broccoli slaw for the first time on monday because of your mention of it the other day! 🙂 i haven’t tried it yet, but i plan on it in the next couple days. i might have to copy your idea – it sounds great.

    i’m so sorry about your digestive issues girl. ughh any health problems are just so annoying and frustrating, especially when you don’t know for sure what’s going on. i would just recommend doing exactly what you said… try to nix the the foods one by one for a while to figure out if you feel better without them in your diet. i hope you’re able to figure out what’s going on and feel better really soon! xoxo

  14. I can relate. I was diagnosed with IBS as well – and it frustrated me. Being in pain along with being bloated and constipated was not fun. So – I took out gluten from my diet. Did it cure it? No. Did it help? Absolutely! My digestive system is much more comfortable (with occasional flares) – so I’ve continued on my gluten free journey. If you do choose to eliminate gluten – it may take a few months to really notice a difference. (Also, don’t take out dairy at the same time – you won’t know what the culprit is!) I hope you figure it all out soon!

  15. Maybe because you are introducing solid foods too quickly back into your diet. This happens with me and should ease up in a week or two. When finishing a cleanse, you might want to go with broth, some greens, and tofu. Things like yogurt.

  16. yep, i think you totally can. You kinda just did an elimination diet right there. I know that dairy and wheat can really CLOG you up or do the opposite. Try avoiding dairy for a week, not wheat, then add dairy back in to see. Then do the opposite with wheat, not dairy. make sense?

  17. Sorry to hear about the uncomfortable bloat! That’s the worst. Definitely trying to eliminate one food at a time and bringing it slowly back in to see if it bothers you would be a great option… at least a good starting point to find out more info!

  18. Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance

    Nowwww I know why you asked me about my intolerances on twitter the other day haha.

    Well I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble! It’s a very sucky thing to face, and I had to go through facing it last June-Julyish too. Except my post-eating symptoms were a little more serious– I would go through a 30-hour long DEATH period where my stomach would literally feel like I was getting stabbed 😦

    Have you considered getting tested?

    • Haha yep. Ugh, thank goodness I’m having that! I have thought about getting tested, but I kind of want to play with things on my own first because I’ve been going to the doctor for other things and don’t want to spend the money haha.

  19. I love love LOVE feta in salads, wraps, omelets, anything!

    I can totally relate with the GI problems you’re facing. My GI doctor diagnosed me with IBS as well, and my major symptoms are the bloating and constipation (like….if I’m not on medicine I will go dayssss, sometimes even into the double digits so I know how freakin miserable you feel!) My doctor suggested I take Miralax and that helped for a while then it stopped working, I went to another GI doctor, he was crazy and told me I basically couldn’t eat anything yet my bloodwork showed that I was not gluten intolerant at all. I tried cutting out gluten anyways and didn’t see much of a difference. Went back to my regular GI doc and she suggested taking Miralax 2x a day and then starting probiotics. Every since then, things have been great but the probiotics are EXPENSIVE! (I’m on Align) and I’m just not satisfied with oh just keep upping your meds..add this medication..blah, blah, blah.

    Eventually I want to try to take a look at things from a holistic approach and try things like acupuncture, etc. but as a student that is not in my budget! Best of luck to you and sorry for the TMI/huge story there 🙂 I wish I could give you better advice about exactly what to do to make things better, but I still haven’t figured it out myself!

    • No, thank you for the story! And I’m so sorry that you have gone through all of that…I hope you’re able to figure it out soon!

  20. Oh man! I feel for you! Praying that you find out the culprit ASAP!!

  21. Wow, your digestive story sounds like mine (just without the cleanse).

    Interestingly, what happened to me was, the more “clean” and plant-based I ate, the more constipated I was (even though I workout and drink like 18+ glasses of water a day). True story! After a series of experiments, it turned out that my body just cannot handle vegetarianism and other healthy eating ideas. The only thing that got things “going” was, well, eating a well-balanced diet. So basically my meals now contain animal-based protein (difficult at first, as I prefer veggies over meat), veggies, dairy, grains and some sugar. It’s weird, I know. But I gave up telling my body what to eat and now just let it guide me.

    Hopefully you can figure out what’s going on with your body soon. The puffy tummy is no fun!

  22. Oh wow–good luck girl! I would def try to eliminate them one by one. I hope you get things figured out–those stomach worries can be SO annoying (and painful)!!

  23. You know I can definitely relate to you on all of this. Have you ever heard of FODMAPs diet? I find that by following that as *strictly* as I can has worked wonders for my digestion. It’s a little confusing at first but once you get the hang of it it’s easier to follow. So hard when there are sooo many possibilities that it can be right. Here’s hoping we can all find answers!

  24. It sounds like you have food sensitivities/slight allergies. I was having the same issues as you last year, and I ended up doing a cleanse. I felt amazing during the cleanse.. absolutely amazing! But then when I finished my symptoms got even worse than before! I finally sucked it up and got allergy & sensitivity testing, and it turned out I was allergic to wheat, dairy, eggs and peanuts and sensitive to 29 foods!

    All I can suggest is cutting out any suspecting foods NOW so that you don’t develop new sensitivities/allergies. If you think wheat/dairy bother you then there really is no harm in cutting them out. There is barely any nutritional value in wheat (can easily be replaced) and there are many dairy alternatives these days.

    I know it sucks to cut things out, but at least you will be doing something amazing for your health 🙂

    Good luck!

    • Holy cow that’s a lot of things! Thank you! I guess I need to get to the store and stock up on some other food haha

  25. Coffee helps me in the bathroom area! well caffinated coffee at least. I often have the same digestive issues and have yet to really investigate them. Although if its a gluten intolerance I may want to just stay in denial because I don’t know if i could live without my bread (and not the gross gluten free kind!).

  26. Ahh that is super frustrating. I am sorry to hear that. I have stomach issues all the time and I think I might be intolerant as well, but I have never done anything about it. I would be interested to see what you decide to do to solve this issue.

  27. Julia @ The Coffee Crazed Teacher

    I am in the same exact boat as you. . . I am beyond frustrated with it and can’t tag down what it is that I need to cut out. I have been eating more “clean” lately and find myself even more bloated/constipated. I am over it, but REALLLY don’t want to go to a GI for them to tell me to go on meds :/ Praying you figure it out soon!

  28. I am going through the same thing! I AM SO tired, and bloated.. but I can not put my finger on it. Coffee? Yogurt? Trailmix? Wheat? No idea. Hope you find out whats bothering your stomach soon- this made me think i should maybe see a Doctor, no reason to feel like this from food, all the time 😦

  29. Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction

    I HATE feeling bloated so I know what you mean! Do you drink enough water? Also artificial sweeteners cause a lot of bloating, if I have a little bit of gum my stomach blows up like a balloon! Believe me I know, because it’s a really bad habit of mine! Hope you feel better soon!

  30. I am going through the same thing! It’s funny how many people experience these symptoms on a daily basis… it has to be our food sources, or something! I wonder how many people have IBS now compared to ten years ago. I want to avoid going to the doctor too, but sometimes it’s so hard to do an elimination diet without a doctor telling you what you can’t eat! That might just be me though haha. whatever it is, I hope you figure it out! 🙂

  31. I think everyone has some sort of food intolerance. I know I do, but I live with it and it never bothers me that much. I don’t know your situation though and maybe it’s something you need to look into.

  32. I have major stomach issues as well and they seem to flair up when I eat a lot of gluten especially white bread. I stay away from a lot of it but I have not totally cut it out. I also have IBS. I have used Miralax in the past but the thing that seems to have helped me the most is I take a 250mg Magnesium tablet twice a day. I can’t believe what a difference that has made and I can tell if I don’t take it for a day or two.

  33. I’m a little late to the game, but I have a horribly sensitive stomach as well, and yes bloating, headaches, and fatigue are all problems I get when I have wheat products. Now, granted I have more aggravated symptoms when I have it for a longer period of time such as rashes and joint pain (as well as a lot of sharp stomach pains and opposite problems of constipation) – but you might wnat to check out an elimination diet to see if it helps! A lot of time intolerances go away after a while if you avoid those foods for a little while. Good luck!

    • Thank you for the recommendation Chelsey! I never knew that joint pain could also be a problem- I’ve been having a lot of pain in my hips lately, but I’m seeing an ortho for that on Wednesday.

  34. I was having horrible stomach issues after eating ANYTHING. Ive always had bloating and stomach discomfort issues. Id tell my doc/gyno and theyd never address them at all. Finally I got so fed up with feeling so terrible and I found out, through an endoscopy and blood work, that I have celiacs disease. My doc originally thought it was IBS but I pushed to go to a gastro doc bc my symptoms were so bad. Im starting to feel better after a month of gluten free eating but def not a 100%. It sucked for me at first but Im starting to love it bc my husband and I are eating so much more whole foods and Im starting to enjoy cooking. I hope you feel better!

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