Published: 11/17/2014 - Updated: 01/02/2018
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
It is said that the stomach forges health. And that’s the truth. The stomach is a key point for maintaining balance, harmony, and good functioning in all systems and organs.
Having good digestion is the base of feeling strong and healthy, both physically and emotionally. Heavy, slow, or arduous digestion does nothing other than damage and deteriorate health, impeding correct nutrient absorption and blocking proper elimination of residue and waste material that only attacks and intoxicates the body.
In order to enjoy favorable digestion, you need to keep in mind what the most common causes of indigestion are:
- Eating too quickly and in a hurry.
- Not chewing food correctly.
- Swallowing pieces of food that are too large.
- Poorly combining foods or eating fried or junk foods, as well as foods that are refined, too heavily seasoned, salted, or pickled foods.
- Combining sugar with other foods, like eating cake immediately after eating meals. The sugar in sweet foods, even fruits, ferments food.
- Drinking a lot of liquid or water at mealtimes.
- Drinking very cold beverages, especially with fats.
- Eating too much or feeling “very full”.
- Drinking alcohol at mealtime.
- Combining proteins with carbohydrates.
- Talking a lot while eating (swallowing air).
- Eating while angry, irritated, exasperated, worried, or anxious.
Symptoms of poor digestion or indigestion:
- Gastric reflux.
- Dirty tongue.
- Heaviness in the stomach.
- Excessive tiredness.
- Bad taste in the mouth.
- Very smelly flatulence.
- Excessive palpitations.
- Tasting your food in your mouth, acidic taste in the mouth.
- Inflamed stomach.
The following advice is recommended to prevent indigestion:
- Eat lighter meals more often throughout the day. 5 meals a day are very beneficial for the body.
- Start drinking lemon juice dissolved in a glass of warm water before breakfast. This will help eliminate toxins from the body that have accumulated overnight.
- At breakfast, avoid eating any sort of animal product. You should start the day by eating fruit, granola, seeds, whole grains, so that your intestines can prepare for a new day. One cup of oats, a plate of fruit with honey and granola, etc., is a good start.
- You should drink two liters of water, at least, during the day. This helps keep toxins flowing from the intestines.
- Don’t eat big, heavy meals. Try to eat light meals, trying to eat a stew and fresh salads, or vegetable juices. Aloe, carrots, and prickly pear will help have perfect digestion.
- Don’t eat while in a hurry. Chew slowly and enjoy your food. Avoid talking while you eat and enjoy your food.
- Don’t drink cold or sugary drinks while eating. You also shouldn’t eat fruit or any other sweet food, to keep the sugar from fermenting these other foods.
- Always eat fruit on an empty stomach, and half an hour before eating anything else.
When you finish eating, try to drink a little bit of warm water and a teaspoon of extra-virgin olive oil, especially with foods that are more difficult to digest, like beans, etc.
Digestive plants and herbs
- Chamomile, angelica, fennel, orange blossom, mint, passionflower, ginger, prickly pear, etc., are a few herbs with digestive properties that help absorb foods better and to make better use of foods. You should try to avoid drinking infusions when you eat because teas contain substances that could prevent correct iron absorption. It’s best to drink infusions half an hour after eating.
For children, you should get them used to eating while sitting. Avoid watching TV while eating and don’t eat anything between meals except for water or perhaps a bit of fruit. If the child doesn’t want to eat, you shouldn’t force him/her, because eating while upset or forced is not good for the body. It’s best to place healthy limits regarding food. If you offer the child something and they don’t want it, then take the plate away, but don’t give them anything else until the next mealtime. If they haven’t eaten anything else outside of meal time, the child will definitely be hungry. It’s important not to offer them sweets just before eating. You should wait and hour and then offer healthy treats, like fruit, cereal bars, salads, etc., remembering that excessive sugar is one of digestion’s and general body health’s worst enemies.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 01/02/2018
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