Nutritionist, Herbalist, Ayurvedic practitioner, Closed Colonic Hydrotherapist, Lecturer, Speaker, Author, Registered Nurse - helping the community for over 30 years.

1. Eat foods that are easy to digest.
Eating foods that are easy to digest and combining them well puts less stress on your digestive system. If you overfill your washing machine with thick heavy fabrics it puts a strain on it and it can break. Your stomach doesn’t want to be overburdened with food either as it takes a huge amount of energy to digest it.
• Aim to drink in-between meals.
• If you are very sick just have water, then stick to soups and vegetable juices as they are easy to digest.
• Vegetables take 30-45 minutes to digest; incorporate green leafy vegetables with every meal and some bitter leaves like rocket and endives as they help your digestion and your liver loves them.
• Beans, grains and other starches take 2-3 hours to digest. Soak them the night before, remove the soak water. The legumes will digest better and stop gas in your belly if you cook them with a kombu stick (seaweed) and/or a little cumin.
• Meat, fish, poultry: Take 3 or more hours to digest. Incorporating lemon, apple cider vinegar and marinating meat with kiwi fruit and or lemon helps these digest more effectively.
• Apple cider vinegar: 1-2 tbsp. in 50mls of water sipped with meals helps digestion. Use lemon on lots of foods and in water to help digestion.

2. Add herbs to your cooking to improve digestion
When you cook different meals think about how you can incorporate the following herbs as they are all digestive aids: ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, coriander, fennel, dill, oregano, thyme, liquorice and aniseed.

3. Eat at regular meal times
It is important to eat regular healthy meals and eat at the same times of day. Eating similar food groups at similar times each day has a regulating effect on your digestive system. Regular healthy meals help regular bowel movements.

4. Be conscious of what you are eating and your portion sizes
Eating too much is the number one cause of indigestion. Your brain signals the feeling of fullness about ten minutes after you are actually full. If you stop before you are full, most likely you will feel full 10 minutes later. Eat with chop sticks or put your knife and fork down between mouthfuls to help you eat more slowly. Use smaller plates and bowls; you can always go back for seconds if you really are hungry. Eat healthy fat with a meal (e.g. coconut oil, avocado, nuts and seeds) or you may feel starving later on and remember 85% of Australians are not eating enough vegetables so add more to your plate.

5. Chew your food completely and avoid talking while you are eating
Your digestion starts in your mouth and chewing makes the stomach’s job easier. Avoid bolting down your food. Your stomach is not designed to digest large pieces of food, and you are more likely to get bloating, indigestion and discomfort if you do bolt your food.

6. Drink warm or hot liquids
Ice cold drinks can slow down the digestive process, the digestive muscles contract and water is not absorbed as well. Warm or room temperature water will encourage proper digestion. Drinking too much around meal time will dilute your digestive juices so they are best drunk between meals. Ideally, drink filtered water without fluoride or chlorine and avoid caffeine, alcohol and soft drinks.

7. Relax during mealtimes
Sit down when you eat, have gratitude and be mindful about what you are eating. Avoid reading a book or watching T.V. whilst eating. Rushing meals or eating on the run increases your stress and slows down the digestive process. Create a calming atmosphere when you eat and after you have finished, sit for 10 minutes. Plan time to prepare, cook and eat your meals.

8. Practice good posture
When you slouch you put extra pressure on the digestive organs in your belly. This can cause poor digestion. It is best if you practice sitting with your shoulders back and your chin tucked in. This allows more room for your digestive organs and will help improve digestion.

9. Don’t eat late at night
Avoid eating after 7pm as this is when your digestion is weaker. It becomes weaker still every hour after so there is a considerable difference if you eat at 10pm compared to 7pm. At night your whole body needs time to rest and revive. When you eat late at night you don’t produce enough enzymes and other digestive juices to digest your food well. The food sits in your stomach and this can disturb your sleep, make you tired and bloated in the morning. It can also make you foggy in the head and grumpy.

10. Take a walk after eating
Increased activity will actually help kick-start your digestive system and raise your production of digestive enzymes. This will lead to easier digestion and less abdominal discomfort. A gentle walk 15-45 minutes after eating for at least 15 minutes will work wonders.

Source: ‘Digestive Solutions-101 methods to solve your tummy problems naturally’ By Michele Wolff

Available from digestivesolutions.com.au

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This