If you suffer from digestive distress, you aren’t alone. According to one survey, nearly three-quarters of the U.S. adult population suffers from digestive symptoms, including diarrhea, stomach pain and bloating. While there are many pharmaceuticals available to treat digestive symptoms such as these, they are no substitution for a healthy diet. By following these 10 dieting tips, you’ll reap the benefits of a healthy digestive system.
#1) Eat Whole Grains
Choose foods made of whole grains rather than refined grains. Whole grains are characterized by a production process in which the grain kernel is left intact. Refined grains, on the other have, are milled to remove the kernel. Unfortunately, removing the kernel means that nutrient- and fiber-rich compounds like the bran and germ are removed. Furthermore, refined grans are typically enriched, making them more starchy and sugary than their whole-grain counterparts.
#2) Aim For 25 or 38 Grams of Fiber Daily
Fiber is arguably the single most important nutrient for a healthy digestive system. Defined as plant-based compounds that cannot be broken down by the digestive enzymes, fiber works to “flush” waste from your digestive system. If you don’t consume enough of it, you may experience symptoms of a digestive disorder. According to the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, men should consume 38 grams of dietary fiber daily, while women should consume 25 grams.
#3) Eat More Fish
Fish isn’t just good for your health; it’s good for your digestive system as well. Whether it’s salmon or tilapia, fish contains an abundance of healthy fats, known as omega-3 fatty acids, that reduce inflammation. And because many digestive disorders are attributed to inflammation in the gut, eating fish as part of your regular diet can stabilize your digestive system and protect it from distress.
#4) Choose Lean Meats
Lean meats are always better for your digestive system than fatty meats. There’s nothing wrong with an occasional hamburger or steam, assuming it doesn’t lead to digestive distress, but you should plan the bulk of your meals around lean, low-fat meats like chicken, turkey and, of course, fish.
#5) Cut Back on Dairy
Drinking too much milk or eating too much cheese may worsen your digestive systems. Statistics show that 65% of all adults, globally, suffer from either lactose intolerance or lactose sensitivity. This widespread condition prevents these individuals from breaking down dairy sugars, known as lactose, in their digestive system. If you fall under this category, dairy products may trigger digestive distress.
#6) Avoid Fatty Foods
You’ll probably discover that fatty foods often worsen digestive symptoms like stomach pain and bloating. This is because fat, especially saturated fat, is hard for the digestive system to break down. In fact, many people are unable to completely break down fat, resulting in digestive disorder.
#7) Eat More Bananas
Most types of fruit have a positive impact on the digestive system, but bananas are particularly beneficial. Not only do they contain fiber — a little over 3 grams per banana — but they also contain a special type of starch. Known as resistant starch, it stimulates the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut. As this healthy bacteria flourishes, it’s able to assist your digestive system in breaking down foods.
#8) Don’t Skip Meals
It’s important that you don’t skip meals. While eating a large breakfast and skipping lunch may sound harmless, it causes irregularity in your digestive system while slowing down your metabolism in the process. To promote a healthy digestive system, eat at least three meals per day, with the occasional snack in between. These meals should consist of a lean meat with at least two vegetables. And if you’re going to eat bread as part of a meal, choose a whole-grain bread as refined grains may worsen your digestive symptoms.
#9) Watch the Protein
Protein is an essential nutrient that your body needs for proper cellular and muscular function. But consuming too much protein can take a toll on your digestive system. Many bodybuilders and athletes, for example, experience digestive systems because they consume protein shakes and other protein supplements. You can still add supplemental protein to your diet, but you’ll need to consume plenty of fiber to help move it through your digestive system.
#10) Drink Water
Don’t underestimate the effect water, or lack thereof, has on your digestive health. Water helps by softening foods so that it’s able to move more easily through the digestive system. According to a CBS report, though, about three in four Americans don’t consume enough of it. Without water in your digestive system, waste remains hard, making it difficult to pass. So, if you’re suffering from digestive distress, make sure you are drinking plenty of water on a daily basis.
If you suffer from digestive distress, Atlanta Chiropractic and Wellness is here to help. We offer a wide range of digestion-promoting products, along with a wide range of other services. Contact us today to learn more!Share