10 Tips for Better Digestive Health

Dr. Amar Amale    22-05-2017 Consult

When it comes to overall wellness, maintaining your digestive health is just as important as maintaining your heart health, bone health and the health of the rest of your body. And the good news is that for most people, it's a matter of taking simple preventive steps. 

1. Eat a high-fiber diet - Consuming a diet that is high in fiber and rich in whole grains, vegetables, legumes, and fruits can improve your digestive health. A high-fiber diet helps to keep food moving through your digestive tract, making you less likely to get constipated. In addition, it can help you achieve or maintain a healthy weight.

2.Limit foods that are high in fat - In general, fatty foods tend to slow down the digestive process, making you more prone to constipation. But since it is important to get some fat in your diet, Dr. Amar says that pairing fatty foods with high-fiber foods can make them easier on your digestive system.

3.Consume Adequate Proteins - In today's world, proteins are obtained from two main sources: animal foods (e.g. beef, chicken and fish) and plant foods (e.g. soy and bean sources). Plant proteins, like beans, soy products and nuts, contain more beneficial mono- and polyunsaturated fats but no cholesterol. When you do choose animal protein, choose lean meats, poultry and fish.

4.Stay Hydrated - Get enough fluids from beverages and foods you eat. Include a beverage with every meal or snack. Healthy digestion requires adequate fluid intake. Many factors such as exercise, weather, weight and health affect how much water is right for you. The standard recommendation is to consume the equivalent of 8 glasses of water a day.

5.Keep Moving - Exercise at least 30 minutes a day, doing activities you like, such as walking, aerobic or strength-building activities. If you can't fit 30 minutes in every day do whatever you can, when you can. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk to work, or take a walk during your lunch break.

6.Skip the bad habits - Smoking and avoid excessive caffeine and alcohol. Liquor, coffee, and cigarettes can interfere with the functioning of your digestive system, and lead to problems like stomach ulcers and heartburn.

7.Manage stress - Too much stress or anxiety can cause your digestive system to go into overdrive. Find stress-reducing activities that you enjoy and practice them on a regular basis.

8.Eat Mindfully - How you eat can be as important as what you eat. Eat slowly, stop eating when you feel full, and avoid eating just before bedtime. Make time for proper nutrition. Take along good-for-you portable snacks, such as fresh fruit like apples and strawberries or dried fruit like dried plums, granola or almonds.

9.Incorporate probiotics into your diet - Probiotics are the healthy bacteria naturally present in your digestive tract. They help keep the body healthy by combating the effects of a poor diet, antibiotics, and stress. In addition, probiotics can enhance nutrient absorption, help break down lactose, strengthen your immune system, and possibly even help treat irritable bowel syndrome. Eat good sources of probiotics, such as low-fat yogurt or kefir, on a daily basis.

10.Pay Attention to Your Body - You'll be able to feel the positive effects of healthy lifestyle choices.
-If you feel low in energy, get up and move your body; it might just perk you up!
-If you are satisfied, stop eating. When your stomach feels stuffed, you've probably eaten too much.
-Think about wellness, not disease.