Improve Gut Health with the Right Diet
Healthy digestion is important, but people don’t like to talk about it that much. What many don’t know is that proper digestion is essential for proper brain function.
Pharmacies and drugstores offer plenty of remedies to help indigestion, but many digestive problems can be avoided and managed with the right food.
Before taking OTC medication, give these 5 foods a chance to improve your digestive tract.
Linseeds when boiled produce mucilage, a substance that swells in the intestinal tract and absorb water.
This stimulates digestion and acts against blockages.
Due to the water solubility feature of flaxseed, it is important that you drink lots of water—at least one and a half liters per day.
Flaxseed can be mixed with cereals and salads.
Kefir is made from fermented milk and can be combined with your breakfast cereal or with fiber-rich oatmeal, flaxseed and fruits.
The dairy product contains three times more probiotics than yogurt.
It contains lactic acid bacteria and other microorganisms that have a positive effect on the intestinal flora and digestion.
Kefir is beneficial especially after antibiotic treatment because probiotics normalize the intestinal climate and prevent infections.
If you don’t like the tart taste of kefir, you can take probiotic foods like sauerkraut or miso, a Japanese soybean-based spice paste.
These seeds have an antispasmodic effect and helps against flatulence, bloating or pain in the upper abdomen.
The caraway seeds are not only suitable for seasoning food but can also be brewed for tea or chewed in acute digestive disorders.
Aniseed or fennel tea helps against stomach aches and an unpleasant feeling of fullness after eating.
Fennel promotes digestion and relieves pain, while anise prevents bloating and stomach problems.
Mint promotes the emptying of the stomach and helps against flatulence and spasmodic gastrointestinal complaints.
If you don’t like drinking mint tea, you can use fresh mint leaves as an addition to smoothies, detox water or to refine oriental dishes.
People with sensitive stomach or chronic stomach problems should be careful with fresh peppermin because menthol can irritate the gastric mucosa and trigger heart burn.
The dried fruit is a gentle laxative and improves bowel movement.
Before taking meds for constipation, try eating five pieces of prunes first or drink a small glass of prune juice before breakfast.
Note: Test the effect of prunes on your digestion with a small amount to avoid an overreaction of the intestine with diarrhea.
If you don’t like plums, dried figs or apricots have the same natural laxative benefits.
4 Things to Do to Avoid Digestive Problems
Different foods have different effects on digestion but how we eat them also play a role in healthy digestion.
These four nutritional tips will help relieve digestive discomfort and naturally prevent indigestion.
1. Eat in the right order
The proteins, carbohydrates and fats contained in foods take different amounts of time to be digested. The wrong order of eating can cause stomach rumbling, heartburn and other digestive problems.
Fruits have a short digestion time–20 to 30 minutes. Salad and vegetables take 30 to 50 minutes to be digested. While carbs take about one and a half to 2 hours and fats take longer–3 hours. As well as proteins, they take one and a half to 5 hours.
Anything you eat after protein-rich foods, such as eggs, quark or chicken breast, must therefore “wait” for the proteins to be digested.
Eat easy to digest foods at the start of your meal to avoid bloating and painful stomach cramps.
2. Maintain a fiber-rich diet
Dietary fiber promotes healthy bowel activity and prevents constipation. Whole grains, legumes and fruits and vegetables are rich in fiber.
When converted into food, it is equivalent to three slices of whole wheat bread, one serving of fruit muesli, two to three medium-sized potatoes or one apple.
3. Drink a glass of lukewarm water before breakfast
To get your bowels going in the morning, drink a glass of lukewarm water as soon as you get up. This promotes intestinal activity, prevents constipation, and helps the body eliminate harmful substances and toxins that have accumulated overnight.
Furthermore, a glass of lukewarm water improves the digestive, kidney and metabolic functions on an empty stomach and helps with weight loss.
4. Take a walk instead of taking a nap
After a heavy meal, exercise is better than resting. When your stomach is full and you lay on the couch, you are at risk of heartburn and other intestinal complaints.
Go for a walk instead. A sweaty training session in the gym or competitive sports immediately after the meal should be avoided though. Because the body is currently digesting food and has not adjusted for an intense physical stress.