By Dr. Sharon Stills, NMD
Many of us are “what happens in the bathroom, stays in the bathroom” kind of people. We may be more comfortable discussing the bowel habits of our pets or our children than share potentially embarrassing details about our symptoms.
more energy, flatter stomach
In addition to eliminating gas and stomach bloating, good digestion lets your body absorb the optimal levels of nutrients, leading to:
- More energy
- Clearer thinking
- Better sleep
- Strengthened immunity
- Improved skin, hair and nails
As a doctor, I believe we all should try to bring our digestion out from behind closed doors. Because how your digestion is – or isn’t – working is one of the most important factors in helping you feel and look great.
Here are my top ways to eliminate gas and bloat by improving your digestion. They’re all derived from Ayurveda, an Eastern form of medicine (which loosely translates as “the science of life”). If these tips help you, I hope you’ll share them with your friends:
Simple secrets to boost your digestion
1. Drink room temperature water. One incredibly easy thing you can do to increase a strong digestion is to drink only room temperature water and beverages. Iced or very cold beverages reduce or even “shut down” the power of your digestion.
2. Savor your food. For someone who loves eating as much as I do, I’m sometimes shocked how quickly I inhale a meal. According to Ayurveda, digestion starts before we even begin to eat, which means aromas, vision and touch are all important ways for the body to prepare to digest food.
It makes a huge difference for your digestion if you have just a few minutes to think about how you’re going to eat, as well as what you’re going to eat:
- If at all possible, use real plates and silverware. I have a cool sectioned stainless steel plate I brought home from India – when I use it, it reminds me of the amazing experience I had there. And it’s great for portion control because it’s sectioned off.
Try this superfast digestive support recipe
Mix 1 cup water, ¼ cup coconut, almond or goat’s milk yogurt and a ¼ tsp of powdered ginger, cumin, coriander and a pinch of salt and drink after lunch.
For an extra kick you can add some fresh mint to the mix.
Your digestion will thank you!
- Notice the smell or texture of the food. The minute food hits your tongue there’s a recognition of taste and texture. This is a great time to savor your food.
- Take time to fully chew. The better digested your food is in your mouth, the better the digestion will be in your stomach and intestines. When you chew thoroughly, your body doesn’t have to work as hard to break down the food. Simple tip: put your knife and fork down while you chew.
3. Try soups, stews and steamed foods. If your digestion is weak now, it can be helpful to take a break from raw foods and try to eat steamed vegetables, stews and soups. These foods get “pre-digested” in the cooking process. Do that for a few months and you’ll soon see your digestion gets stronger.
4. Eat healthy fats. Adding healthy fats and oils in your diet keep the digestive system lubricated. Avocado and olive oil, as well as ghee (clarified butter), can be used when preparing and eating various dishes and meals.
Almost 7 out of 10 women that we talk to at Women’s Health Network suffer from a digestive issue! If you feel completely overwhelmed by your digestive symptoms, I suggest you take a look at our Digestive Health Quiz. You’ll answer 14 questions to get a better idea of what your symptoms mean and what you can do to improve them!