Energise your cells
Have you been buying fresh fruits and vegetables from organic produce shops and following a proper diet for a while, but are yet to see any positive...
Have you been buying fresh fruits and vegetables from organic produce shops and following a proper diet for a while, but are yet to see any positive effects on your health?
There is an age-old adage that says, “You are what you eat.” However, along with eating the right foods, an important contributor to good health is your body’s ability to digest and absorb all the nutrients from what you eat. The positive impact of high quality food upon your health will only show up if your body can meaningfully digest the food, and break it down sufficiently to absorb the nutrients within it. To understand how to get the maximum nutrition of your good quality foods, you must understand the digestive process better.
Pay attention to your digestive system when planning a new diet:
This is why while deciding your diet, you have to keep your digestive system in mind. Eating the right nutrients is not enough if you don’t pay enough attention to your digestion process. Interestingly, this was understood in Indian culture, long before the science on the subject was clear. Traditional foods often aid digestion and assimilation of nutrients through combining different foods.
For example, boiled black gram (kala chana) when topped with spices, green chillies and lemon juice make for healthier snack than having boiled black gram without these toppings. That’s because the protein and iron present in the black gram are better absorbed due to the Vitamin C present in the lemon.
Understanding the needs of your digestive system and combining foods in a manner that aids nutrient absorption can be the difference between just eating healthy and feeling and being healthy.
There’s a variety of different things you can do to ensure your digestive system gets all the support it needs from you to do its job effectively. Make sure you eat in a relaxed environment as being happy has a strong and positive impact on digestion and metabolism. Don’t eat too quickly, as that stresses the body out and obstructs the production of gastric acids. Recognise that foods such as gluten, dairy, corn, soy, peanuts, etc. are common offenders when it comes to affecting the production of gastric acid (which is so essential for digestion.)
Here are a few ways to improve digestion naturally:
- Always remember that the process of digestion begins in the mouth. This means chewing food thoroughly is the first step to healthy digestion. If you don’t chew your food properly, even the most expensive and nutritious foods will not benefit your cells. Therefore, enjoy mindful eating and avoid speed eating. Try and chew every mouthful 32 times before you swallow it.
- Probiotic foods like yoghurt consist of friendly bacteria that are great for health, especially for the digestive system. Probiotics often fall under the category of good bacteria because they keep the gut healthy.
- Keep your body hydrated by drinking at least 3-4 litres of water every day. Water aids in digestion and helps in the proper absorption of nutrients. Low water content in the body leads to dehydration and affects the body’s overall performance.
- Eat a high-fibre diet that consists of whole grains, vegetables, legumes, and fruits. This will improve digestion and help the body in achieving or maintaining a healthy weight.
- For most of us with extra energy needs, taking a good quality, easy-to-absorb B Complex sublingual liquid supplement may be the best way to ensure all the essential nutrients are absorbed and reach the cells.
If you have had digestive problems – acidity, constipation, gas or poorly formed stools – for a long period of time, this could be an indication that the nutrition from your food is not reaching your cells properly. The first step to address this challenge should be to fix your digestive tract.
Given our modern habits, despite a powerful and complex digestive system, our body is still not able to absorb certain nutrients into the cells. Stress, smoking, and alcohol affect the body negatively and wreak havoc on the gut, prevent effective digestion and contribute to various disorders. For complete well-being, one should start listening to the signals from one’s own body and start making changes accordingly, before it is too late. After all, a healthy body is the key to a much happier life.
By: Mahesh Jayaraman
The writer is medical researcher, therapist, health advisor and co-founder of health platform sepalika.com.