Are you suffering with heartburn or headaches ? Are you having a hard time getting out of bed in the morning ? Do you feel unrested ? Are you bloated or retaining water ? These can by symptoms caused by the foods that you are eating.
All of us will benefit with better, healthier digestion. Today it is considered as one of the main things to address when we are working for an improved and healthier body. “All disease begins in the gut” – Hippocrates. Modern day diseases can begin in the gut due to poor lifestyle choices and a bad diet.
All of us are biochemically individual and so what can cause one person to feel digestive distress may not cause problems for another person. Some of the foods which typically cause gas and bloating are: legumes and beans, fruits and vegetables, grains and dairy. Here are some fruits and vegetables which are typically easier to digest: bananas, berries, beets, carrots, cucumbers, green beans, leafy greens, sweet potatoes and zucchini. If you are having a hard time with fruits and vegetables you can always try preparing them by steaming or baking or cooking them. This can make them easier to digest.
There are some simple steps you can take if you find that you are having a hard time with your digestive system even while eating a balanced diet. You may still be having gas, bloating, allergies or a hard time losing weight. Take these steps to help improve your digestion:
Don’t Drink and Eat Together: Liquid dilutes stomach acid. It makes it harder to digest proteins in foods. It’s best to wait a half hour to an hour before and after meals to consume liquids. It’s the bariatric golden rule. Don’t eat and drink at the same time.
Food Combining: Eating the right combination of food can help optimize digestion. The rules are simple. Eat only one type of protein at each meal. Don’t combine your eggs with bacon – just eat eggs or bacon or fish or chicken. Don’t combine starches and proteins. A typical example is eating a potato with your steak. It can be harder to digest this combination for anyone with a compromised digestive system. Another example is pasta with chicken. Separate these foods in order to improve digestion.
Intermittent Fasting: Today intermittent fasting is becoming more and more popular. You don’t need to do a 3 day fast to experience the benefits of fasting. You can do a 12 hour fast between dinner and breakfast and this will enable your body to rest and focus on other important functions such as cell regeneration instead of constantly digesting and assimilating and eliminating. It gives your digestive system a little break between meals.
Eat Less Sugar, Coffee and Alcohol: Be careful when eating, drinking these stimulants. They can compromise your digestion and leave you feeling bloated and gassy. They affect your positive gut bacteria. Sugar can feed bad gut bacteria. These stimulants can also leave you feeling tired and icky overall.
Drink More Water: We are supposed to drink half of our body weight in water each and every day. This means pounds of body weight to ounces of water – example 140 lbs should drink 70 ounces of water per day. Drinking enough water helps with digestion and also with elimination.
Chew Chew Chew: Take your time and chew your food please. Digestion begins in the mouth and if you don’t chew enough you are compromising your digestive system because it needs to work even harder to break down the food. Take the time to eat and chew your food well to help digestion and to better enjoy the foods which you are eating.
About the Author: Sheri Burke is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Bariatric Surgery Coordinator at International Patient Facilitators in Tijuana and Cancun, Mexico. She has worked with bariatric surgery clients for over 10 years and especially enjoys providing nutritional guidance to pre and post bariatric clients. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two teens and cooking up a nutritional storm in the kitchen.
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