20 Foods to Eat and Avoid on an Empty Stomach

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It may not always be right to eat what we feel like! The first thing we eat in the morning sets forth the course of the day. Certain foods may wreak havoc with your gut if eaten on an empty stomach.

Believe it or not, there are some foods that seem healthy, but we really shouldn’t be eating on an empty stomach. However, we have a list of foods for you to avoid, and some alternatives to ensure your start to the day is healthy and satisfying.

Foods to Eat on an Empty Stomach

1. Eat Oatmeal

eat oatmeal on an empty stomach

Oatmeal is one of the best and healthy foods to start your day with. Oatmeal creates a protective coating around the lining of the stomach. This prevents hydrochloric acid from damaging stomach walls. It also contains soluble fiber, which lowers cholesterol levels and improves digestion. Oatmeal will also keep you full longer.

2. Eat Whole Grains

Whole grains contain complex carbohydrates, which are part of a healthy diet. The best time to eat it is early in the morning, so you can spend your day burning off those carbohydrates. Whole grain toast is the most common example.

3. Eat Eggs

eat egg on an empty stomach

Eggs are a very filling and healthy breakfast item. Whether you like your eggs scrambled, poached or boiled, they have been shown to significantly cut your daily calorie intake.

4. Eat Blueberries

Blueberries are one of the healthiest fruits on the planet. They are low in calories, improve memory, improve blood pressure and circulation and boost metabolism. Their benefits are augmented when consumed as a breakfast food. You can put them on oatmeal, eat them in a fruit salad, or just pick at them.

5. Eat Nuts

eat nuts on an empty stomach

Nuts are not typically thought of as a breakfast food item, but they are rich in healthy fats and protein. If eaten at breakfast, they can improve your digestive health by normalizing the pH levels of your stomach, decreasing the risk of ulcers and excess stomach acid.

6. Eat Watermelon

Watermelon is an excellent option for those who desire their fruit fix in the morning. It provides you with a good amount of fluid when consumed on an empty stomach, and improves the health of your eyes and heart, due to its high levels of lycopene.

7. Eat Honey

eat honey on an empty stomach

Honey helps awaken your immune and digestive systems. Honey has been shown to help with lazy bowel syndrome (a type of constipation) and other stomach issues. It also acts as a cleaning agent by ridding the body of harmful viruses and bacteria.

8. Eat Cornmeal Porridge

Cornmeal porridge flushes out toxins from your system. It normalizes microorganisms that live in the digestive tracts of humans, and keeps you feeling full and satisfied for a long time.

9. Eat Papaya

eat-papaya on an empty stomach

Papaya releases a powerful enzyme called papain, which is thought to aid digestion and reduce the risk of colon cancer by clearing free radicals from the digestive area. Papaya is also very high in fiber, vitamin E, and vitamin C, all very necessary for healthy food digestion.

10. Eat Fresh Fruit

Fruit is an incredibly healthy food group: packed with vitamins, nutrients, fiber and water. Incorporating fruit into your diet, the proper way, allows your digestive system to reap more powerful benefits through vitamin intake and improved digestion.

Starting your day with fruits helps you detoxify your system, supplies you with a great deal of physical energy, can aid in weight loss and provide the needed energy and focus for other life activities.

Here is the list of the best foods to eat in the morning.

Foods to Avoid on an Empty Stomach

11. Avoid Puff Pastry

Think twice about a continental breakfast. Croissants, usually moist and very rich in fat, might sound like a tempting start to your day, but they contain yeast, a type of microbe that irritates the lining of the stomach that may cause flatulence.

12. Avoid Citrus Fruits

don't eat citrus-fruits on an empty stomach

Although this may not apply to everyone, citrus fruits such as grapefruits and oranges can irritate an already inflamed lower esophagus (muscular tube connecting the throat with the stomach) and may need to be limited or avoided, especially when having them on an empty stomach.

13. Avoid Carbonated Drinks

Soda consumption is one of the leading causes of obesity in people, but even sugar-free carbonated benefits are not recommended on an empty stomach. Drinking them in the morning can damage respiratory passages and reduce blood supply to the stomach, making food digest more slowly, which can cause constipation.

14. Avoid Spicy Food

dont eat spicy food on an empty stomach

Eating spices and chilies on an empty stomach may irritate the stomach. This can lead to acidic reactions and cramps. They are hot in nature and can trigger indigestion.

15. Avoid Raw Vegetables

This one is especially for those who are diet conscious and believe that salads are great anytime of the day. Raw vegetables or a salad may not be the best thing to eat on an empty stomach. They are full of coarse fiber which may put an extra load on an empty stomach. They can also cause abdominal pain when eaten on an empty stomach.

16. Avoid Yogurt

dont eat yogurt on an empty stomach

The primary reason to avoid eating yogurt on an empty stomach is, because the benefits of the lactic acid bacteria found in yogurt is rendered ineffective due to the high acidity of stomach acid. Therefore, you gain very few of yogurt’s health benefits when consumed first thing in the morning.

17. Avoid Sweets

Eating sugar boosts insulin levels, which in turn significantly increases the load on pancreas that has just woken up, which may lead to diabetes.

18. Avoid Tomatoes

dont-eat-tomatoes-on-an-empty-stomach

If you are suffering from acid reflux or stomach ulcers currently, avoiding tomatoes is a must. Tomatoes may taste great in our omelets, but they contain very high levels of tannic acid, also increasing acidity in the stomach and worsening your reflux symptoms.

19. Avoid Coffee or Tea

Although it might be part of your morning ritual, make sure you’re pairing your morning caffeine fix with something else! Consuming tea on an empty stomach can sometimes cause nausea and stomach discomfort. Coffee on an empty stomach can further increase stomach acidity and worsen symptoms of gastritis.

20. Avoid Bananas

dont-eat-banana-on-an-empty-stomach

Bananas are one of the best known diet foods. It satiates, assists in relieving constipation and is considered by some health experts to be a superfood. However, bananas contain high amounts of magnesium and potassium which can lead to an imbalance of magnesium and potassium in blood if you eat bananas on a completely empty stomach. Bananas are a prime example of eating the right food at the wrong time.

Check out the worst breakfast foods to start your day.

Ensuring our stomach’s acid levels are normal and healthy, protecting our stomach and getting the proper nutrients can significantly influence the rest of our day, as well as our long-term health. Knowing what foods protect your stomach and what foods may harm them will help to shape your future health.

Note: We also advise that you should give your digestive system some time to start functioning after long hours of sleep and should eat breakfast at least one hour after you wake up.
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