Getting the balance right
“You are what you eat” is a common refrain but it’s not only what you eat but how you digest, absorb and eliminate it that contributes to overall good health.
Digestion isn’t just confined to your tummy; it can affect mood, energy levels, the immune system, allergic reactions and even joint comfort. Related to your diet, food intolerances, dehydration, lack of fibre and not taking the time to eat properly can be culprits. Lifestyle factors such as stress and lack of sleep and exercise are key. Your body may be lacking in probiotics or digestive enzymes or be affected by medication. Health problems such as candida, worms, haemorrhoids or fissures can also have adverse affects on digestion.
The good news is that there are some very simple steps to take to achieve better digestive balance (and some of them won’t cost you a cent!).
3 TOP TIPS FOR BETTER DIGESTIVE BALANCE
1 Know your body
Are there some foods/medications that trigger digestive problems? Where is your problem?
2 Take charge
Be prepared to change food choices, the speed at which you eat and the amount you eat.
3 Make time
Schedule your day so you have time to prepare wholesome meals then sit down and enjoy them. Take time to relax with a cup of herbal tea.
COFFEE OR TEA?
While moderate caffeine intake in a healthy person is considered safe, if you are having digestive issues cutting your caffeine consumption is worth considering. Caffeine causes increased acidity in the stomach which can result in reflux, heartburn and irritation on both the stomach and intestinal tract walls. It also stimulates gallbladder contraction and colonic motor activity. Caffeine’s laxative effect can also mean that you don’t digest foods as well as you should.
A soothing cup of tea provides a moment of time-out as well as a way to naturally aid digestion. Red Seal herbal teas contain 100 percent herbs with no artificial ingredients and are naturally caffeine-free. Here’s how to create the perfect moment for…
Red Seal Chamomile Tea is a soothing tonic that can help calm the nervous system and relax an upset digestive tract. If you’re having a stressful day, it’s the ideal way to chill out.
Try Red Seal Peppermint Tea. This aromatic herbal tea is great at any time of day, before or after meals. It can even help calm queasy stomachs, so it’s ideal for mums-to-be.
Red Seal Red Bush Chai Tea has a touch of spice which can help digestive enzymes do their work. This aromatic hot drink is perfect for warming up cold winter nights.
HOW TO AVOID ANTACID TABLETS
Here are eight great natural digestive aids to use instead:
1 Liquorice tea
3 Slippery elm
4 Aloe vera
5 An apple (before bed)
6 Chamomile tea with manuka honey
7 Water at room temperature
8 Apple cider vinegar (1 teaspoon) with manuka honey, sipped at mealtimes
By Julie Fergusson, Red Seal Naturopath
Always read the label and use as directed. If symptoms persist see your healthcare professional.
Credit: Life & Leisure