Hi there and welcome to my blog! A platform for like minded people to read, share and connect.
What to connect over this time? Our digestion..
It’s a topic that’s been part of my life for a long time now since my gut health has never been.. that great.
Over the years I gathered some tips&tricks and a lot of information regarding bloating, digestion and gut health.
That’s what I’m sharing with you all today!
First I will tell you how it’s possible to increase your energy and happiness by fixing your digestion.
You will be surprised..
Our digestive tract goes far beyond just processing the food we eat. It has a brain of it’s own (our so-called second brain) called the enteric nervous system.
This enteric nervous system consists of some 500 million neurons.
The enteric nervous system normally communicates with the central nervous system(spinal cord, brain) via the vagus nerve and the orthosymphatatic nervous system.
However, study’s showed that the enteric nervous system can function on it’s own! How amazing is that..
And it’s not just this, think about all the bacteria living in your gut. These little things(millions of them) control a lot of what’s happening down there.
No wonder our energy and happiness is dependent on our gut health, it’s all connected.
Now we’ve got that covered, I’ll share some tips&tricks so we can all work on our gut health and become our most happy and energized self!
I’m not just sharing tips that personally help me, but I did some research and gathered a variety 0f tips&tricks because what works for you might not work for someone else.
1. Keep a ‘stomach diary’
Sounds silly, but this might be the best tip..
In a stomach diary you write down what you ate, how you felt afterwards and how your body reacts(after eating and moments later).
This way you may find out what is causing the bloat that day, and probably other days!
I’ll share what I gained from keeping a stomach diary, because most of those foods are know for causing ‘certain symptoms’:
-wheat/gluten: bloating, stomach pain, less energy, headache, mentally unbalanced, constipation and diarrhea(2 or 3 days after eating moment)
-apples: bloating immediately after eating
-legumes(especially lentils): bloating, gassy, farts with a strong smell, constipation
-chickpea flour: bloating
-oats: heavy/sluggish feeling
-peanut butter: headache, feeling sluggish
2. Leave out certain foods one by one
A good way to find out which food is causing a certain symptom!
Leave out one type of food at a time and start eating it again after a few weeks. That way you’ll easily notice if it’s causing any discomfort for you.
3. Chew well and enough
Digestion begins in your mouth.
Literally, enzymes start working when you chew and saliva is added to the food in your mouth.
So chew well, but also chew more. The more you chew, the less your body has to do.
4. Drink enough water
Keeping your body hydrated will help with optimal digestion and liver performance.
The liver plays a big role in providing our body with the needed nutrients from the food we eat. To function properly the liver requires a good amount of water! Keep that in mind and you’ll find it so much easier to drink enough.
5. Don’t drink while eating
So make sure you drink enough around your big meals
This might be a hard one for some, but try to stop drinking 30 minutes before, while eating and 30 minutes (to an hour) after eating.
”There is no doubting the fact that drinking too much water during meals can interfere with the natural and necessary levels of bile and stomach acid. This would slow the digestion process and reduce the body’s ability to produce enough digestive enzymes to digest foods properly.”
6. Move your body and twist it out!
Kick start your digestive tract by moving your body. Preferably after sleeping, naps or sitting for a while.
I’m not saying you should go to the gym or go for a run, but just move.
Walk, stretch, shake it out. Twisting your body is like a massage for your digestive organs and it will increase digestion big time.
What I like to do first thing in the morning is; I roll myself from bed to my yoga mat, stretch, twist and focus on my breath.
7. Rest and digest
Make sure, when possible, to rest just before eating and after your meal.
When resting our parasympathetic nervous system starts to ‘take over’.
This nervous system is in control over all actions which occur when the body is at rest including sexual arousal, salivation, secretion of tears, urination, digestion and defecation.
The opposite happens when we’re active and our sympathetic nervous system is pulling the chords, which controls our flight or flight response.
When we start to eat without calming down (eating on the go, a quick lunch break etc.) our sympathetic nervous system is still active and this means our digestion is not.
Rest > parasympathetic nervous system > digest
Active > sympathetic nervous system > fight or flight response
8. Reduce or avoid stress
If you read the first part, about our gut and brain being connected, you’ll understand why. Stress negatively stimulates the brain a lot and the brain sends signals to our gut, which gets ‘stressed’ too. This might cause constipation, pain, slow digestion etc.
This is also the other way around.. when we eat foods which negatively stimulates our gut it sends signals to our brain.
What happens? Your vibration might be lower, headaches, foggy brain, less concentration..
Our digestion plays such a big role in our overall health take good care of it and adjust your lifestyle if needed so you are able to THRIVE!
Lots of love, let’s connect
(and talk about our bowel movements hehe)
(oh and I’m keeping it really ‘neutral’ here, but still I want to mention: cut out all animal products and you’ll notice a big positive change in your digestion and mental health)