Staying Low Carb When You’re Sick :/

Steph Wagner

January 30, 2015

Have you been feeling under the weather??

I feel this year has been very hard on everyone with the cold, flu and everything else yucky.

When you’re sick – weight loss and healthy foods just plain aren’t the priority. The priority is to feel better!

But when you don’t watch what you’re eating…you can feel poorly in a totally different way! When you feel under the weather, it’s important to still keep your eye on some healthier choices for the best healing possible.

When you feel poorly but you’ve had weight-loss surgery, be sure to keep these things in mind. You’ll keep yourself from feeling poorly in a totally different way! 

I. Stay hydrated with the RIGHT fluids. 

When you’re sick, your fluid needs are much higher than they are normally. You are at a higher risk of dehydration and the road to recovery will be slow if you aren’t staying on top of your water.

BUT your fluid choices are super important. You may feel tempted to have Sprite or juice because that’s what you’ve always done when your sick. Resist!!! The sugar and/or carbonation in these beverages can greatly upset your stomach and mess with your energy levels. This is especially true if you’re diabetic and/or if you’ve had Gastric Bypass surgery.

Instead, chose fluids that are not carbonated, not caffeinated and less than 15 calories per 8 ounces. Diet Cranberry Juice or Crystal Light® Orange Sunrise would be much better for your recovery than traditional juices.

II. Look out for “comfort foods” 

I know the most tempting thing when you’re sick is to go with your old comfort foods. Mac and cheese, soup and crackers, mashed potatoes, milk shakes…oh my.

All the fat and carbohydrates in these foods can absolutely lead to “GI upset” (ahem…diarrhea…) which will leave you in bed or on the couch longer than the original illness would have left you there. Also, these foods are addictive! Even when you are feeling better once again, the sugar pumping through your body from these foods will make it difficult to cut starches and sweets back out of your diet once again.

Instead, you need to reinvent your go-to foods when you’re feeling sick.

What about Chicken Salad or high protein broth soups and other hot drinks? White Turkey Chili instead of noodle or creamy based soups?

III. If you have starches – be smart about it.

If you’re thinking…nope. I feel terrible and I’m barely eating anything much less making a low-carb chili right now….I’m going to eat some starches…

Then just be smart about it. If you know you can go through a sleeve of crackers like no on else, maybe you should get some Melba Toast instead. They tend to be less desirable for one (okay, personal opinion) and they don’t tend to come in as big of a box. Think of the big picture here and try to find the best option.

IV. Chose Sugar-Free Cough Drops or Hard Candies

If your throat is horribly sore – be sure to get the sugar free cough drops :) However, if you find you’re going through several in a day…you might consider a numbing throat spray instead. Sugar alcohols, found in the sugar-free cough drops, can leave you with an upset stomach, diarrhea and cramping if you have more than a couple a day. Keep that in mind :)

Above all else, take care of yourself! Stop and rest, even if it means missing things you feel like you shouldn’t miss. Taking care of yourself will allow you to heal and get back to your responsibilities. But ignoring your health will keep you feeling poorly longer than necessary! 

Feel better!!

– Steph :)

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