How’s your digestion?
Even though a lot of people are “regular,” they’re not eliminating effectively. If you have any complaints like constipation, bloating, gas, acid reflux, or nausea, you may need to take a look at your digestive system.
Although common, these symptoms are not healthy, and are a sign of poor digestion. Besides the discomfort, suboptimal digestion inhibits vitamin and mineral absorption, which can interfere with weight loss.
Use the following easy test to check your digestion, then keep reading for 6 steps to improve it. Plus, receive 10% off + 1 free week of a gentle, but effective colon-cleansing herbal tea if your digestion could use a little boost.
The Beet Test
All you need is about half of a beet, and the stomach to glance into your toilet after a successful bowel movement sometime in the near future—hopefully between 12 and 24 hours after you chow down on that beet.
Holistic nutritionist Joy McCarthy said it’s a simple way to “check your transit time.” The beet test allows you to get a sense of whether you fall into that ideal 12-24 hour range, since you’ll be able to see the bright red pigment in your stools.
So take your raw or roasted beets (not pickled)—peeled or unpeeled—and eat them as you wish: in bites or grated as a salad topping.
Fiery red poop 24 hours or more later means you’ve got a “slow transit time,” also known as constipation—a common result of the beet test.
“That food is sitting in your gut for that many days,” said McCarthy, who suggested increasing the fibre in your diet as one solution. Eating chia or flax seeds, more vegetables, pears or berries can combat constipation, but don’t overdo it if you’re not used to it.
Less common is if you’re seeing those beets in less than 12 hours. McCarthy said that means you’re not really absorbing all the nutrients from your food. You might be eating too fast and not fully chewing your meals, which will leave you with food particles in your stools.
Or you could have too many stimulants in your daily life, like coffee. “You have less absorption of nutrients when you consume stimulants because they basically force food through the gut much faster,” she said.
Beet test provided by Global News.
6 Steps to Improve Digestion
Once a healthcare professional has ruled out any serious underlying causes of concern, such as thyroid dysfunction, ulcers, or inflammatory bowel disease, you can do a lot on your own to optimize digestion and speed up weight loss.
1. Breathe through your nose.
Our breath is a simple, but powerful tool in regulating our nervous system. Breathing through the mouth, as we often do when we’re working hard, nervous or anxious, activates our sympathetic nervous system. Breathing through the nose, however, does the opposite, and relaxes our body into parasympathetic mode.
So, before you even look at your food, close your eyes and take three deep breaths, in and out, through your nose.
2. Eat mindfully.
It’s easy to eat too much too quickly with our busy lives. This can lead to bloating, gas, and indigestion. Look at your food, notice the colors and the way it sits on your plate. Smell your food. Pay attention to the texture and taste of each bite, chewing at least 20 times for each bite.
When you eat, the only thing you should be doing is eating. No TV, no computer, no work. This helps you to eat the appropriate amount and put the body into parasympathetic mode, enhancing the overall digestive process.
3. Don’t go straight for seconds.
It takes around 10 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain that you’re full, so wait at least 10 minutes before going for seconds. This will prevent overeating, a common cause of indigestion, and may even help you shed a few pounds.
4. Stay hydrated.
Drinking plenty of water is important for your digestive health. Fiber pulls water into the colon to create softer stools, allowing them to pass through more easily. Not enough water causes our intestines to become dehydrated and food doesn’t move through effectively.
Exercise and gravity help food travel through your digestive system. Take a walk after a meal to assist your body in moving things along. Gentle twisting also helps to stimulate the digestive organs.
6. Try a colon-cleansing tea.
Try this detox tea for a good-tasting, unique herbal blend of all-natural ingredients formulated by a doctor. Ingredients such as persimmon leaf, holy thistle, and marshmallow leaf will assist your body in gently eliminating waste, foreign matter and toxins from your digestive system acquired from everyday living.
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