3 Things to Improve Digestion

Are you struggling with digestive issues?  Stress?  Pain? Headaches? Eczema?  Or some other random symptoms that no one can seem to get rid of, let alone have an answer of why you have it?

This day and age, everyone is after a quick fix.  Truth be told, I used to be like this, but guess what? Quick fixes will not resolve your problems.  They could temporarily offer band aid solution but it won't be long before they rear their ugly faces again.  And when they do that symptom will not only be worse, but it more then likely will bring a new "friend" along for the ride.  

It's human nature to rush to get results, unfortunately our body needs time to heal, time to repair the damage that has been years in the making.   There are things that your body is telling you, you only need to stop and listen.  

Unfortunately, several features of the modern lifestyle directly contribute to unhealthy gut flora:
■ Antibiotics and other medications like birth control and NSAIDs
■ Diets high in refined carbohydrates, sugar and processed foods
■ Diets low in fermentable fibers
■ Dietary toxins like wheat and industrial seed oils that cause leaky gut
■ Chronic stress
■ Chronic infections
■ Chronic Inflammation

Antibiotics are particularly harmful to the gut flora. Recent studies have shown that antibiotic use causes a profound and rapid loss of diversity and a shift in the composition of the gut flora. This diversity is not recovered after antibiotic use without intervention.

This is a crucial point to understand: 
You DO NOT have to have gut symptoms to have a leaky gut.

Leaky gut can manifest as skin problems like eczema or psoriasis, heart failure, autoimmune conditions affecting the thyroid (Hashimoto’s) or joints (rheumatoid arthritis), mental illness, autism spectrum disorder, depression, anxiety, and more.

It's important to note that you do not have to have any digestive symptoms to have gut health or leaky gut problems.

Here are 3 easy ways to start improving digestion:  

Chewing

I know, I know, everyone chews their food, but really how well are you chewing it? 

  • Are you a mom squeezing in a meal before the baby wakes up?
  • Running an errand and remember you haven't eaten, so you say to your self "I'll eat something real quick."  
  • Are you late getting out of the house but know you need to eat something real quick or you will be hangry? 
The list goes on and on with reasons why we don't slow down, enjoy our food, and take our time. It's important to help our gut work smarter not harder.  If there is any chance your gut is even a little damaged we have to support it. One of the many functions of the stomach is to digest your food. How great would it be if the food getting to your stomach was already one step closer to moving on to the next step?  Not only does it not have to work as hard, but now it has more energy to do all the other important tasks it needs to do.  

So now when you chew your food, keep chewing, and chewing.  Aim for a paste consistency.  Your gut will thank you! 

Drink your water with your meal or at the end!

Wait what??  I thought it was best to drink a big glass of water before eating so that you feel full faster?  That's a big Nope, especially if you have poor gut health or leaky gut.  

When you drink a big glass of water before eating, you are actually diluting the very thing your gut needs to help digest AND to help protect the lining of your gut.  HCL aka hydrochloric acid lines our stomach and its job is to protect it your body from unwanted toxins escaping into the blood stream. So by drinking a bunch of water all you are doing is diluting it, making it virtually ineffective.  

If you struggle with acid reflux, it's ideal to not take medication to suppress this.  When you have reflux your stomach actually doesn't have enough stomach acid to be doing its job and by further suppressing it, you can do more damage then good.  Unfortunately this secret is still a secret in the general medical society.  (Please note if you currently take an acid reduction medication, please do not stop it cold turkey.  Your body must be weaned from it and your gut supported prior to removal of the medication.) 

Be grateful for your food

Wait, this might seem like a simple or even silly digestive secret, but it is oh so important!  Thinking about your food prior to eating it, helps your gut to work smarter!  By thinking about your food and how delicious it's going to be and how thankful you are to have food in front of you, triggers your body to release its digestive juices aka enzymes. Those enzymes help to breakdown the food quickly so your stomach can absorb the nutrients your body needs.   I bet right not you are thinking about your next meal and are noticing that there is more saliva in your mouth.  This is a good thing!  

That's it! Can you believe how super simple these three digestive secrets will be to squeeze in to your day to0 day!

I can't wait to hear how you are feeling after making these simple changes!

If you are currently struggling with undiagnosed chronic illness and ready to have just one person who not only gets it, but listens?  Join our community of friends who used to not have support, who now not only have others who listen, but those that care.   Learn how to take control and feel better too.  Hopeful Health Seekers:  Chronic Illness & Beyond 


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