Having digestive problems definitely isn’t fun. It can cause embarrassing moments when you have to leave a social gathering, because of gas or diarrhea or even worse, both. It can cause a lot of pain and bloating, too. You can take some action to improve your digestion. It takes changes to your lifestyle, some simple, some hard, but it’s worth it to feel good again.
It starts with your microbiome.
You may have heard the word microbiome on body soap commercials, but your microbiome isn’t just on your skin. It’s the complete genetic material of all the protozoa, fungi, viruses and bacteria that live both on your skin and in your body. In fact, you have more genetic material from your microbiome than from your own cells. Not only do these “bugs” control your digestion, they control weight, mood, gut health, heart health and brain health. –
Exercise helps improve digestion.
Studies show that not only does exercise help the digestive process by aiding in circulation and increasing oxygen and nutrients throughout the body, it also helps move food the digestive system and improve your gut microbiome. Having friendly bacteria and other microbes aids in digestion. If you’ve ever taken an antibiotic before, you know they often leave you with digestive problems. That’s because they disturbed the natural balance in your digestive system. Not only does digestion help you eliminate gas and move the food through the digestive process, it helps improve the balance of microbes in your gut for healthier digestion.
What you eat makes a difference, too.
You probably have heard that eating fiber can help keep you regular and avoid digestive issues. That’s because fiber can work in several ways to aid digestion. There’s insoluble fiber that won’t digest, but adds bulk to your stool and insoluble fiber that draws in water to create a soft stool that’s easy to pass, while avoiding diarrhea. Foods with soluble fiber include oat bran, nuts, beans and seeds. Food with insoluble fiber include wheat bran, whole grains and some vegetables.
- Make sure you drink plenty of water to help with digestive problems. It helps keep stools softer to prevent constipation.
- Eat probiotic foods, such as yogurt, kefir, kimchi and sauerkraut. These foods can help restore the natural order when you’ve taken antibiotics and enhance nutrient absorption.
- Cut out alcohol, coffee and cigarettes that can cause problems like acid reflux and heartburn. They interfere with digestion.
- Follow a healthy diet of whole foods. You’ll find my nutrition app is a big benefit for healthier eating and the fitness app can help with a workout program. Try our Kitchen Rescue Pack.