3 top tips for healthy digestion
While it may not be top of mind, it is just as important to take care of your body’s digestive system as it is to maintain your heart, bones and overall wellbeing.
Digestion is vital for breaking down the food and drink you consume to utilise carbohydrates, protein, fats, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients which your body uses for energy, growth and repair.
Poor digestion can result in health problems that deprive your body of nutrients and can be caused by a number of factors and chronic health conditions.
Yet one of the most common causes of poor digestion is leading an unhealthy lifestyle. Turn that around with these 3 ways to maintain your digestive health.
1. Eat and maintain a healthy diet
Eating healthily not only means a well-balanced diet, it also requires consuming foods rich in fibre, such as vegetables, fruit and wholegrains or cereals. This will encourage the passage of food through the digestive system and maintain the health of your bowels.
Limit the amount of processed foods in your diet and foods high in saturated fat and sugar.
Not only do processed foods have high levels of salt and preservatives, they also offer little in the way of nutritional value.
Make sure you keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day, and avoid consuming alcohol and soft drinks.
Read more: The new Australian food pyramid
2. Eat moderately, slowly and regularly
Overeating or eating in a rush puts too much stress on your digestive system.
The process of digestion begins at your mouth and not your stomach. Make sure you take time to eat slowly, chewing each mouthful well to help your stomach to digest smaller amounts of food.
Eating regularly helps prepare your body for meals and prevents overeating due to hunger. To avoid overindulging and feeling hunger pangs between meals, consider eating five to six smaller meals with snacks throughout the day, rather than three large meals a day.
3. Reduce and manage your stress levels
You might have heard the phrase feeling sick to your stomach? When you’re feeling nervous or stressed, that sense of unease in your abdomen can be from the effects on the nerves of your digestive system.
In some people, stress can change digestion by slowing down the normal process causing bloating, constipation or even having loose watery stools.
Keeping your stress levels under control may require you to be aware of your emotional stressors. Take care in situations that may cause stress, and learn tips to help you to relax.
Having a good sleep routine and making time to have some fun can help your body relax and improve your digestive health.
Looking for some more personalised help for your digestive health? Chat to the Blackmores Advisory team for free advice here