When you’ve eaten way too much ice cream and get a stomachache immediately after, it’s pretty obvious what you’re eating had an effect on your body.
But sometimes, the body communicates in more subtle ways telling us that our bodies aren’t loving what we’re eating. INSIDER spoke with several medical professionals and nutritional experts to determine what signs your body may be giving you to change up your diet.
You can’t sleep.
It’s commonly known that consuming caffeine later in the day can make it difficult to fall asleep at night, but some people are not aware that there are other hidden sources of caffeine in their diets which may cause insomnia, according to Chirag Shah, MD, co-founder of Accesa Labs.
“Certain types of energy drinks, chocolates, breath fresheners, and even decaf coffees and teas contain some caffeine,” Dr. Shah told INSIDER.
If you are having trouble sleeping, he recommended keeping a close eye on what you are eating and drinking in the afternoon and evening.
Your skin is dry.
A lack of water could explain your dry skin problems, according to Dr. Shah. Water is an essential part of the body and, in the midst of a busy day, many people forget to drink enough of it, he added.
Your skin depends on adequate water intake in order to maintain its health and elasticity, and for many, inadequate water leads to dry skin, he explained. If you find that your skin appears dry, keep track of your water intake throughout that day and make sure you drink enough, Dr. Shah told INSIDER.
You’re always tired.
If you’re on a diet of mostly junk food, fast food, processed foods, and high-fat foods, you’re likely to feel tired all the time, according to Armen T. Ghazarians, CEO Finish Fit(r), LLC.
Diets that are high in carbs and sugar give you a quick boost of energy, but it comes at a cost. After your blood sugar levels drop, you are likely to feel pretty wiped out due to the fact that added sugar uses up a lot of nutrients since the body has to process it.
You constantly have to pee.
A classic sign of a diet that is high in sugar is frequent urination, according to Ghazarians. This is due to the effect the high glucose levels in the blood have on your kidneys, which remove extra water from your blood to produce urine.
If there is too much glucose in the blood, it can damage the blood vessels in the kidneys making the filtering process less efficient and causing you to pee more.
Your breath stinks.
If you find that you’re often offered gum or mints, then your low-carb diet could be the culprit of your bad breath problem.
Since carbohydrates aren’t readily available, your body starts to use other fats and proteins as your source of energy and this results in the bad breath problem, Kenneth Burrell, DDS, senior director of the council on scientific affairs of the ADA told WebMD. There are certain chemicals, called ketones, that are released in the breath as the body burns fat producing the bad smell.
You have brain fog.
It’s common to have trouble concentrating or to struggle to find that word on the tip of your tongue sometimes, but if this is happening all too frequently, it may be due to your diet. Because your brain works 24/7, it requires a constant supply of fuel, which comes from the foods you eat.
If you think about it like an expensive car, it runs best when it gets only premium fuel. Therefore, eating high-quality foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants will nourish the brain, while a diet high in sugar and refined carbs would be considered low-premium fuel, which will have a negative effect on your brain, causing your brain fog.
You get migraines.
Some foods that are linked to migraine triggers include aged cheeses, red wine, chocolate, ice cream, dried fruits, and peanut butter. However, everyone with migraines may react differently to different foods, so making a food diary can help you determine what your personal triggers may be.
You often experience indigestion.
Indigestion or irregularities in bowel movement is largely the result of the types of food in your diet or lack thereof, according to Dre Delos Santos, personal trainer, CSCS.
If you think what you’re eating is affecting your digestion, it’s worth sitting down with your doctor or a nutritionist to see what changes you can try.
You’re feeling anxious.
Another issue that can arise from improper nutrition is anxiety, according to Melissa Eboli, nutritional chef, CNE. This is usually the result of too much caffeine, but a B12 or magnesium deficiency could also be the culprit.
This is often common among those following a plant-based diet and not getting enough proteins and amino acids in their diet along with B12 to make up for the nutrients they are missing from eggs, honey and meat, Eboli told INSIDER.
Of course, anxiety affects everyone differently, so it’s best to talk to your doctor or a mental health professional first.
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