What Keeps the Digestive System Healthy?
Our intrinsic sense of taste, smell and vision along with instinct serve as reliable guides aiding us to cook and consume a colourful variety of naturally nutritious foods. However, with the modernization of food, our senses are often hoodwinked by artificial flavors, colors and taste enhancers and we end up consuming deceptively nutritious food. In reality, these foods are low in nutritional value and serve no purpose besides inciting our taste buds and increasing our cravings. Consequently, we continue to eat these non-nutritious foods and end up with long-term health issues. The first issue that rears its ugly head is indigestion.
• Unhealthy Diet – Insufficient Nutrients
• Poor Nutrient Absorption – Insufficient Enzyme Production
• Indigestion Digestive Disorders – Poor Digestion
Sometimes, indigestion is a result of insufficient chewing. Various digestive enzymes are produced at different stages along the digestive tract that help break down the food and release nutrients. Enzyme production depends on adequate supply of the right nutrients, which in turn depends on proper absorption of nutrients from the digestive tract. If there is a drop in enzyme production, a part of the food may remain undigested. This results in poor absorption of nutrients, which in turn lowers enzyme production leading to indigestion. To break this vicious cycle, one has to follow some simple guidelines.
How to Keep Your Digestive System Healthy:
Keep It Simple and Digestible:
Cook and eat meals that are easy to digest and are easily excreted. Poor elimination aggravates digestive disorders. Meals should be prepared using natural and fresh ingredients. Processed and refined ready-to-eat meals are best avoided as they reduce enzyme production. Sugary foods feed harmful bacteria, high protein meals take a lot of time to digest and fatty foods are difficult to digest and eliminate.
Also Read: What are Some Easily Digested Foods
Make It Tasty and Nutritious:
Taking time to prepare tasty meals will ensure a positive and long term shift towards healthy eating for better digestion. Learning to prepare nutritious meals guarantees a sustainable change towards a diet that supports digestion, absorption and excretion. It is important to consume spices and herbs as they contain special phytonutrients that have amazing healing properties.
Keep It Low-Cal:
For healthy digestive system one should go for low calorie foods. High calorie foods generally tend to be low in nutrients. Nutrient density is crucial for proper enzyme production. High calorie meals tend to be high in fat, which is difficult to digest and eliminate from the body. The body’s digestion works at its best when supplied with small easy to digest meals. High calorie meals may remain undigested, initiating digestive distress.
Have Adequate Water:
Water is naturally detoxifying and vital for the smooth functioning of cellular metabolic processes. It is the main solvent for body secretions; it is crucial for all body processes, including healthy digestive system. It is recommended that and average person should consume a minimum of two liters of water every day for efficient digestion. Avoid carbonated and caffeinated drinks as they can cause heartburn.
Chew Well and Practice Portion Control:
If you put in the time and effort to cook a good meal, then you need to savor and enjoy it too. Many people suffer from poor digestion simply because they eat in a hurry and do not chew their food properly. A large amount of food consumed at one time may lead to difficulty in digestion. Overeating is the main cause of indigestion. Small and frequent meals eaten throughout the day is better for healthy digestive system.
Bloating, gas, heartburn, constipation and leaky gut are all symptoms of not taking out time and occasionally cleansing the body with simple gluten free and detox meals. A regular detox program stimulates two of the largest detoxification pathways – colon and the liver. A poorly functioning liver or colon can cause digestive health problems, mainly constipation and toxic overload.
Inactivity slows down metabolic processes that are essential for good digestion. Busy people can conveniently exercise by walking up the stairs or cycling home from work.
Avoid Gut Triggers:
Specific foods cause problems in some people. Foods that are acidic in nature such as citrus fruits, tomatoes and fizzy drinks can cause heartburn. Onions and wheat may cause IBS and lactose intolerant people develop gas and diarrhea after eating dairy products or drinking milk. It is wise to avoid consuming any digestive abnormality triggering foods.
Avoid Excessive Use of Spice:
Not many people can digest spicy food. Scorching garlic, hot chilies and onion may trigger heartburn. Go easy on spicy foods if it gives you heartburn, abdominal pain or diarrhea.