Food Combining

A great way to improve your health and digestion is to use proper food combinations. This can help with gastric issues such as bloating, gas, Crohn’s, IBD & IBS and improve the absorption of vitamins and minerals.

Certain foods pair well together and some foods don’t. Will explain why at the end.

Fruits (on its own)

The easiest foods to digest are fruits. Fruits are not taxing on the body to digest. Fruits should be eaten on their own and not combined with other foods. Fruit should be seasonal and fully ripened. Unripe fruits can cause digestive problems especially bananas. Fruits are fully digested within 2 hours.

Do not eat other foods straight after fruit, wait at least 2 hours.

Proteins (only with vegetables)

Proteins such as meat, fish and nuts should only be paired with vegetables.

Do not combine meat or fish with starchy foods like potatoes or bread.

Vegetables (with protein or starches)

Vegetables can combine with all protein foods such as meat, nuts and lentils.

You can also pair vegetables with starches like rice or potatoes.


Starches like potatoes, pasta, bread, sweet potatoes can be eaten with vegetables or on their own.

There are two terms that are useful to know:

  1. Fermentation
  2. Putrefaction

There are two ways food incorrectly combined can break down in your body.


This can happen when fruits have not digested in your body and you eat s starchy food like bread, cake, pasta. The undigested sugar in the fruit can mix with the starches and start to ferment. This can cause gastric distress, bloating and gas plus the nutrients will not be properly assimilated.


When we eat protein we produce a strong acid enzyme that helps to break down that food type. Proteins take the longest of all foods to digest. If we eat starches at the same time we create a different enzyme that is not powerful enough to break down proteins. When we combine protein and starches it will take longer for both foods to digest. The protein will stay longer in our gut undigested creating putrefaction and can cause symptoms of gas, bloating, acid reflux and discomfort.

To recap the 3 Main Food Combination Rules:

  1. Always eat your fruit alone. You could have one fruit meal per day.
  2. Don’t mix protein with starches. So no bread or potatoes with meat.
  3. Vegetables can go with both protein or starches.

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