Top 5 Tips to Improve Digestion

by Laurel on December 9, 2012

Digestion may not be the most riveting thing to talk about, but it’s a vital process that drastically affects our quality of life. Drawing from the wisdom of Ayurvedic medicine, digestion is the key to our health. It’s the ultimate reflection of our physical and mental/emotional well-being. Taking into account that every body is different (bio-individuality), these top tips for improving digestion are things I’ve learned during my training as a health coach and my own experience.

1. Add more spices to your meals. You may not know it, but many spices are healing for your body’s digestive system. I love adding spices to my salads, soups, and sandwiches whenever I get the chance. Turmeric is anti-inflammatory and helps relieve indigestion. Cardamom and cumin relieve flatulence. Black pepper increases saliva and gastric juices. Coriander improves abdominal discomfort related to irritable bowel syndrome. Ginger is often used to treat nausea. Fenugreek tea cleans the digestive tract walls.

2. Drink water with lemon throughout the day. Lemon juice has traditionally been used as a digestive tonic and also to support healthy acidic levels in the stomach. Drinking lots of lemon water keeps your digestive tract hydrated and lubricated, easing digestion and reducing the risk of stomach ulcers. Many top health experts say that drinking a glass of lemon water is the best thing you can do first thing in the morning.

Lemon water

3. Meditate for 15 minutes every day. Since digestion is so closely tied to our emotional state and level of stress, I would argue that meditating and deep breathing are the most beneficial thing you can do. “Research done in recent years proves there is a real connection between the digestive tract and the nervous system.” (Food Matters) Try downloading guided meditations to your mp3 player or phone so you always have them nearby. Read this Everyday Health article about a study that found “mindfulness training can actually help improve IBS symptoms.”

4. Reduce/remove dairy from your diet. Dairy is one of the most common food allergens, often causing bloating, constipation, and digestive discomfort. According to Dr. Mark Hyman, “about 75 percent of the world’s population is genetically unable to properly digest milk and other dairy products.” Check out my post on easy dairy substitutes.

Peach Crumble with Vegan Whipped Cream

5. Get lots of exercise. Healthy exercise, especially core-strengthening and low impact movements, increases blood flow and encourages better movement and absorption in your internal organs. Exercise is also another fantastic way to reduce stress. Just remember to wait 1-2 hours after eating before you work out. Try these stretching exercises targeted towards digestive health.

Have another tip that’s worked well for you? Share it in a comment here. If you’ve tried the above tips and consistently have digestive discomfort, I highly recommend trying an elimination diet and/or getting tested for food sensitivities. You can read more on this from Dr. Mark Hyman on The Huffington Post.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

moncler weste December 18, 2012 at 6:32 am

Best wishes!Your blog is very good!

Neil Butterfield January 9, 2013 at 7:06 am

Great post Laurel. Digestive health is so important. So many health issues can be avoided by looking after the digestive system.

rita January 13, 2013 at 12:00 am

Hi dear Lady,
Seldom respond to this stuff. But felt drawn to . Need this capability with a maching. I’m asking how can I get one-no money/limited income but need one for my Hep C immune system battle.
Have outlived, PLEASE HELP me pulllverie my food if ur ableor have acess to used equipment to get on ur baluable program of proper raw nutrition.
I have HCV, DDD, Emphasema, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Osteoporosis, DDD and Fibromyalgia, COPD, G.A.D. Bone spurs in my hands an don coccyx withh ruptured discs but do my best to walk everyday and eat well. The liver biopsu prognosis extended for six years and with a “bullet” or one of the tools to do ur recipie, I’d get even better at survival.
I am almost 60 now…with renewed faith in the theory from “back-in-the-day..WE ARE WHAT WE EAT. Knowing..(in my twenties) as a Pre-Med major who passed the MCAT Exams + was an ORT Tech, my desire for preventative + hoistic ways was met with resitance when I stood before the Directors of the program I had a seat in. I finished UCIMC’s Pre-Med program
(before fellow students from the MiddleEAst and Asia graduated. It was before a c-section birth (at 38) and the deadly hysterectomy (at 33) where HCV goy inyo my system via two pints given to save me, then. Death is evntual but can be staved off with food that is good. I’m glad ur generation and u are carrying “the torch” we carried about fruits and veggies to health and prevent illness, With what I’ve learned , I hope to help others and promote people such as you and your entrepreneurialship.
I’ve know since tests fo rmy condiitions in 2004. I had no idea why work had become nearly impossible. I spent three decades in sales and marketing with much stress to add insult to injury but have been blessed. Supplements helped, threee years ago. Now I’m worse. My juicer is too weqk and I really need a machine to eat as u recommmed. My organs keep my fight for nutrition difficult especially since the immune system allowed collagen colitis to add more difficulty getting the right foods that I can digest.
Any suggestions to attain this item without money to spend. a great letter and result reports will be m gift. in return. Just wrote a book called A Woman in Times of Power and Miracles to soon be available from Puvlish America.
Proper nutrition “from the garden” is key.to maintaining health and the use of Mother Nature with the Father; fertility can keep us alive a long time. My best buddy is on Hemodialisis and uses the Blade (I need something like that)to keep alive and well. Perhaps u can help. , Ill and retired but not retarded, I’m an author; a starving author but can get fruits and veggies.
My next book about surviving illness with the help of getting back to nature and using recipies like u offer. I’ll include things about ur organization and will benefit and enhance the value off success u deserve! Hope u have a connection to assist and look forward to using ur recipies and sites.
Warmest Wishes!
Rita
(949) 369-6987

caitlin February 27, 2013 at 10:42 pm

cutting out grains and especially seeds and legumes from our diets and taking probiotics has greatly improved my and my boyfriend’s digestion. (we are not celiac.)

Vanessa Ramirez April 2, 2013 at 10:08 pm

I think all of us experience problems with digestion, somehow we cannot avoid it because we all need to eat and sometimes we eat certain foods that can create problems in our digestion or to our bowel movement. Drinking water with lemon is one of the best remedy we can do to improve digestion, medicines are not that necessary, sometimes they can only worsen the problem especially if we don’t choose the correct medicine or if it was not prescribed by a doctor.

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