One of the most challenging aspects of following a strict SIBO-friendly diet is finding foods that you do not have to make for yourself. Convenience foods are necessary when you do not make enough food or things just do not go as planned. The first several months (and even beyond), it can be really challenging to predict exactly how much food you need to make for the week. Also, the prep time for making your food for the entire week can really eat into your weekend (assuming you batch-cook on weekends). Luckily, if you search hard enough, there are convenience foods out there for us SIBO sufferrers! In this post, I am going to share with you some of the ones that I have found. Please feel free to leave comments about your go-to SIBO-friendly convenience foods.
1) Mario Snack Olives- Kalamata with a Hint of Thyme: These are lightweight and easy to keep in your purse for emergencies. Although they are only 100 calories and therefore not that filling, they can get you past those I NEED FOOD NOW!!! moments.
2) Diestel Brand No-Salt Turkey: Although labeled just as “no-salt” it is also sugar free and actually, the only ingredient is turkey. If you eat it plain, it is pretty boring. I like to dip slices of this turkey in olive oil and sea salt (kind of ironic considering it is no-salt added turkey). The only place in Portland that I know carries this is Food Front Co-Op. Last time I checked (yesterday) they charge $11.99/lb.
3) Unsulphured Shredded Coconut– Coconut can be a touchy subject in the SIBO world. Personally, I have not found it to negatively effect me. In fact, I find it to be an excellent source of calories with minimal carbohydrates. One cup contains approximately 500 calories and 20 grams of carbohydrates. The reason that I buy unsulphured is that I believe I am sensitive to sulfur. You can read about that here and here.
4) The Smokery Smoked Salmon (Simply Salmon variety only, unless you can tolerate honey)– This one can be purchased at the Portland State University Portland Farmer’s Market on Saturdays. It is pretty expensive, but truly delicious. It lasts in the fridge unopened for several weeks, so it is good to have around in case of emergencies.
5) Sardines Packed in Olive Oil– Okay, I will admit, I saved this one for last because it is not my favorite. However, the health benefits and convenience have me going back to it in times of desperation. The first can of sardines I ever purchased sat in my cupboard for probably two months before I ever tried it. When I finally toughened up and tried them, I was pleasantly surprised that they were not nearly as bad as I imagined they would be. Some people even say they enjoy them. Sardines are packed with omega-3’s and are therefore a really great anti-inflammatory food. Just give them a chance, you might be pleasantly surprised as well!