Nutritional Counseling For Indigestion & Poor Digestion
There are many different causes of indigestion. It can all begin with insufficient digestion components (lack of enzymes, antacid use, or lack of chewing). Chewing initiates the digestion process. Amylase enzymes in the mouth begin breaking down your food. Us, in America, tend to eat food fast and don’t focus on chewing. Chew, chew, chew! If you start chewing your food, your downstream digestive tract works more efficiently and you have better digestion overall.
Our Standard American Diet (Aka “SAD diet”) consists of processed foods and sugar that lack necessary enzymes for proper digestion. The SAD diet also lacks a variety of food combinations. A meal balanced with a combination of protein, fat, and carbohydrates help optimize nutrient absorption.
Stress also has a significant impact on proper digestion. Think about it, do you lose your appetite whenever you are in a stressful moment? Do you ever run to salt/sugar foods when you are stressed? When we are in this state of stress, our bodies don’t want to focus on digestion and want to just “survive the day”. Finding a moment of peace prior to food consumption has shown to better digest nutrients. We need to step away from the TV, turn the radio off, put down our cellphones, and sit together when consuming meals. All of this impacts how well we absorb food.
Again, Chew, Chew, Chew your food! This can become a habit. Chew your food until it becomes a liquid before swallowing. Proper hydration also impacts digestion. See our “10 commandments of good hydration” on proper ways to optimize your hydration habits. You can also drink mineral water with meals. Minerals generally need stomach acid and fat for absorption. Consuming mineral water with meals will increase your nutrient absorption. Eat fresh, whole foods whenever possible. Foods naturally contain enzymes and fiber which are crucial for digestion. Decrease diary, red meat and gluten as they all inflame the body and the GI system. Manage your stress appropriately, especially when eating your meals. Take a moment to turn off the noise and be present with your food. And finally, supplement when necessary. Sometimes we need some extra help with digestive enzymes, probiotics, etc. to get our bodies back on track and prepared for proper digestion. Peppermint oil is a natural antispasmodic and can help relax intestinal smooth muscle by blocking calcium influx into the muscle cells. It also supports the movement of food through your intestines and stimulates the flow of bile.
Some people assume that chiropractors “just crack joints” and only fix neck or back pain. But your body is an integrated system of nerves, cells, and chemicals. If one aspect is out of balance, it can wreak havoc on the body. At Brown Family Chiropractic, we are also trained to provide nutritional counseling to help the body heal, reduce inflammation, reduce pain, improve digestion, improve nutrient absorption and overall wellness in the body.
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The intent of any nutritional recommendation is to support eh physiological and biochemical processes of the human body, and not to diagnose, treat, cure, prevent any disease or condition. Always work with a qualified medical professional before making changes to your diet, prescription medication, lifestyle or exercise activities.