Here comes the Sun
The summer is approaching, and warmer weather lies ahead (we hope!). Summer always brings a feel-good factor. Everyone wants to feel good and look the best in the summer sun. It is difficult to feel and look the best while experiencing digestive issues.
Try the following 5 tips to aid better digestion:
Take a Probiotic
These are a form of live bacteria which are beneficial to the gut and may be added to a simple meal or summer salad. They are found in fermented foods such as kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, pickles, natural yogurt, cottage cheese, miso, apple cider vinegar, tempeh, parmesan cheese, and sourdough bread. A dietary supplement can also be taken but it’s not recommended for everyday use. Fermented Foods are the most natural source.
There is no recommended daily intake for probiotics, the general guideline is to add as many fermented foods to your daily diet as possible.
Research has shown that probiotics may help ease some of the uncomfortable symptoms associated with digestive issues, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), excess gas, and bloating.
Constipation is a common cause of sore tummies. The causes may vary. Try to avoid being dehydrated. Not drinking enough water can slow the system down making a bowel movement difficult. Aim to drink 1.5-2 litres of water a day and reduce consumption of caffeine, alcohol and fizzy drinks.
Fennel and Peppermint have been used for centuries to help ease digestive discomfort. Other teas that help reduce bloating are Lemon balm, Wormwood, Ginger, Gentian root, Chamomile, and Angelica root teas.
Many women experience bloating and constipation leading up to and during a period. A peak in progesterone can slow the digestive system. If possible, follow a healthy diet and drink lots of water, stay active with exercises such as Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, Deep breathing, and Walking.
Stress is a major influence on the digestive system. The stress hormones can divert blood away from the gut to the muscles as part of a fight or flight response. Avoid situations of unnecessary stress. Try eating a meal while sitting at a table where all digital devices (mobile phones, tablets) are turned off or left in another room. Avoid any distractions (other than pleasant ones!) At work, eat lunch away from the desk.