Top 10 Tips for Good Digestion
1. Eat in order of digestibility.
You should eat the easiest to digest foods first in each meal and slowly move towards
the more complex. Think of a highway, if the slowest cars are in front they'll hold
up the faster cars behind them, causing a traffic jam. The same goes for your food.
Eat those fastest to digest first and save the tougher to digest foods for the second
half of your meal.
Here are the time sequences for different food groups:
- Water & Juices: 20-30 minutes
- Fruits, Smoothies, Soups: 30-45 minutes
- Vegetables: 30-45 minutes
- Beans, Grains, Starches: 2-3 hours
- Meat, Fish, Poultry: 3 or more hours
2. Drink warm or hot liquids with your meal.
Ice cold drinks can slow down the digestive process, think of it as putting ice
on a muscle. The muscle stiffens and does not function as well. Warm or room temperature
water, juice, or decaf tea will encourage proper digestion. (Just remember the traffic
jam – drink liquids prior to meals)
3. Eat at regular meals times.
It is important to be regular with what you eat and the times of day you
eat. Eating similar food groups and at similar times each day has a regulating effect
on your digestive system. Regular in means regular out.
4. Be conscious of what you eat and your portion sizes.
Over consumption is the number one cause of indigestion. Our brain signals the feeling
of fullness about ten minutes after we're actually full. So stop eating
before you are full. Odds are you'll feel full ten minutes later!
5. Chew your food completely and don't talk while eating.
Incomplete chewing and talking while eating can cause premature swallowing. Our
digestive systems are not designed to digest large pieces of food, when we put large
pieces in our stomachs it can lead to incomplete digestion (aka: digestive discomfort).
6. Relax while eating your meal.
Eating when you are rushed increases your stress and slows down the digestive process.
Create a nice calming atmosphere when eating and make sure you can devote time to
7. Practice good posture.
When you slouch or hunch over extra pressure is put on the digestive organs in your
abdomen. This extra pressure can cause poor digestion. You should practice sitting
with your shoulders back and your chin tucked in. This will allow more room for
the digestive organs and will help improve digestion.
8. Don't eat late at night.
Our bodies, including our digestive system, slow down in the evening hours as it
gets ready to rest and rejuvenate. When we put food into our stomachs at these late
hours there are not enough digestive enzymes to properly digest it. This undigested
food sits in your stomach and will often disturb your sleep.
9. Take a brisk walk after eating.
Forget about not be active for 30 minutes after each meal. Increased physical activity
actually helps jumpstart your digestive system and increases the production of digestive
enzymes. This will lead to more complete digestion of your food and less digestive
10. Try a spinal twist.
Spinal twists allow excess toxins in the digestive system to be released, which
has a calming effect. While in a cross legged sitting position, slowly turn to the
right and hold while taking 5 deep breathes then repeat this process on the left
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