5 Tips for Happy Digestion
5 Tips for Happy Healthy Digestion
There are many things that affect our digestive health and we all have a unique collection of variables in this arena such as sensitivities, metabolic rates, structural make up, bacterial communities, emotional hang ups, likes and dislikes...
Here are 5 tips that will help EVERYONE to better digestive health:
“Drink your food and chew your drink”
There’s more to this aphorism than just making sure your sweet corn doesn’t come out the other end whole. Mastication is a vital part of eating as well as drinking. The digestive process begins in the mouth as saliva breaks down starches. Also, combining food or drink with saliva helps the body to recognise what is about to be taken in so that it can release relevant enzymes required to absorb it appropriately further down the digestive tract. So if you miss out on thoroughly mixing the contents of your mouth with saliva then this process may not occur to its fullest capacity, thus you will not maximise on useful nutrients that you are eating.
2) Mindful Mastication
Enjoy your food
Consider noticing your food and honour it for what it is – a vital source of life-giving, life-sustaining energy. Take time away from other activities to get the most out of a meal or a snack. No watching the news, working, writing, doing your emails, texting a mate even – this may seem like an enjoyable thing to be doing whilst having your lunch, however being pulled into a drama just pulls your attention away from the bountiful and nutritious gift you’re giving yourself.
Your state of mind whilst eating affects the energy that you put into your body so be sure to enjoy it, look at it, smell it, consider it, love it.
If you have tips for Mindful Mastication then please share them in the comments below.
3) Protein first
The order you eat your food affects how it will be absorbed
Eating protein before carbohydrates in any meal slows down the breakdown of the carbs and the release of sugar into the blood stream. This helps to keep your blood sugar levels more stable giving you more sustainable and long-lasting energy. This is a vital habit for anyone with diabetes or with risk of diabetes but is really useful for everyone.
It will also help to stop you from over eating as you will not get the hunger pangs that occur with high blood sugar.
4) Eat little and often
Don’t skip meals and don’t gorge (Celebrations discounted – we’re all only human after all!)
There are a few reasons that this is mentioned often and most of these reasons aren’t universal, such as stretching the stomach, disturbing normal/healthy metabolic rhythms, increasing cortisol (stress making hormone) and comfort eating. I am listing it here because eating excessively large meals causes acidity in the body and causes blood sugar levels to peak and trough. Both of these things cause dis-ease. Let’s not do that!
5) Evacuate fully and regularly
There is a poo technique that, if you’re not already doing, will change your toilet time forever! In a good way!
The ideal position to defecate unfortunately fell out of fashion with the arrival of the water closet throne. In order for your bowels to release ease-fully you should have your knees higher than your hips, so you are in more of a squat position. A simple box or pedal bin in the bathroom can act as a food rest or one of those steps that you get for kids that fits around the base of the toilet. Don’t believe me? Take advise from the unicorn!!