Power up your gut: 8 proven steps on how to improve your digestion by Olivia Thomas
Yoga and other ancient schools of healing consider the digestive fire as the core element of our body. Wonder why? That is because human beings have one of the largest microcosm of bacteria in their digestive tract. These gut microbes are 10 times more than the total number of human cells.
We have come across a lot of terms in our life like – “gutted”, “gut-wrenching”, “gut feeling”, “butterflies in our tummy” but we somehow never knew the science behind it. Scientists have discovered a strong link between our gut health and our brain. The Vagus nerve (the longest cranial nerve in the body) connects our brain and the gastrointestinal tract. Studies revealed that one of the most important functions of the gut bacteria is the regulation of the stress hormone. The digestive tract and the brain are so closely knit that the gut is also called the “second brain.”
How should we take care of the system that takes care of us the most?
1. Know what you eat
Ensuring that you eat a lot of healthy food that is good not only for your gut but also your body is paramount. Having a lot of fibers like vegetables, oats, legumes, grains etc. help in retaining water and thus providing us with sufficient amount of roughage.
Fats are important for our bodily function, but not all kinds of fats; just the healthy ones. Adding probiotics like yogurt or kafir is great for our gut health and digestion.
2. Watch what you do
Digestion does not start in your stomach it starts in your mouth. As soon as food enters your mouth, the oral cavity triggers a mechanic function of chewing your food along with providing it with the necessary bacteria for digestion that is present in saliva. Chewing your food properly is very important, as it helps break down the food into smaller pieces making it easier on the stomach and the intestines to digest. Along with this, you need to make sure that you undertake exercise or any form of physical activity to help your digestive process along.
3. Follow a Schedule
Moreover, it is important to follow a strict schedule when it comes to having your meals. This is because your body needs 3 hours at minimum to digest the previous meal. Having your meals at the right time and in the right quantity is another thing to keep in mind.
4. Watch your Gaps
Do not skip any meals just because you are still full from your previous meal. Adding extended-gaps between each meal is not a good practice to follow for your gut health.
Just like how we take a bath everyday to cleanse ourselves from all the dirt and pollution, our internal organs too need to flush out their toxins. Detoxing is a great way to do that. Due to the excess accumulation of toxins and poisonous elements present in our body, our digestive process tends to get hindered as well.
6. Drink Water
The reason why we were always asked to drink a lot of water from a young age is to avoid gas, acidity and constipation.
7. Weigh In
Maintaining a healthy weight is another important thing to look into when it comes to a healthy gut.
Avoid alcohol consumption and smoking as they release toxins into your digestive tract. Maintaining stress levels and never eating food when in a bad mood or angry can all help our digestive tract be healthier.
Enjoying your meal is of utmost importance, which is why we should never watch TV or use our laptops while having a meal. Poor digestion can wreck your physical health and mental well-being. So all we have to do is take care of it and it will take care of us in turn.
About the author
Olivia Thomas is a travel and health blogger. In the past decade, she has covered over a thousand articles on health. She is also interested in sports and has been playing volleyball for quite a while. In her free time, she likes to spend time with poor kids.