Digestive Health Foods: The Best and the Worst
Digestive health is something that affects your immunity, energy levels, overall health and sense of well-being.
While another gift-giving holiday approaches, along with tons of tempting foods, including chocolates, cakes and candies to and from your Valentine, your digestive system may need an extra boost after the goodies are gone.
So here are the best, and worst foods for your digestive system to help you maintain a feeling of vitality all year long.
Best Foods for Regular Digestion:
Papaya contains digestive enzymes including papain that helps to break down proteins in the digestive tracts. After a hearty steak dinner with your loved one, sweeten the meal and support your GI tract with a few slices of this delicious fruit.
Avocado is a nutritional powerhouse that offers a combination of essential fats including Omega-3, and Omega-6 to support healthy mental functions, muscle building and joint health, but it also aids in the release of existing enzymes in your mouth that support the digestive process.
Bananas are a great on-the-go snack and you can add them to your daily menu to help neutralize the acidity of gastric juices. This promotes regularity and satisfies a sweet tooth.
Leafy Green Vegetables are loaded with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients including a specific compound that promotes intestinal health. They also can help to balance bacterial levels in the gut to support immune system function, and a healthy gastrointestinal system.
Mangos are just plain delicious, and they provide the body enzymes that help to cleanse the colon of toxins, and pollutants that can build up and cause indigestion, gas and irregularity.
Ginger Root is a naturally sweet herb that has been shown to increase the muscle contractions needed for digestion. The compounds in ginger include gingerol and shagaol along with other that act as muscle relaxants to soothe common digestive upset.
Asparagus contains natural prebiotic bacteria, or ‘good” bacteria that helps to maintain gut health, and proper immune system function.
Beets are nutrient-dense and sweet. Add them to juices to get a healthy dose of fiber, to aid in full elimination of the digestive system.
Worst Foods for Regular Digestion:
Fatty Foods including fried foods and those that contain saturated foods can have especially long transit time, leading to a sluggish feeling and loss of energy.
Dairy can be difficult to digest and for many people the unique sugar found in dairy products called lactose, causes digestive troubles along with blood sugar spikes that can lead to unhealthy food choices.
Wheat Products often trigger a food allergy to the protein contained in it called gluten. Many people find that even in small amounts, wheat products can lead to a lack of energy, digestive upset, headaches and more.
Caffeine, Soda and Alcohol tend to be over consumed. Caffeine can cause acid reflux and a laxative effect for some people. Soda contains known carcinogens, sugar and artificial ingredients that can cause a variety of problems for the digestive system. And Alcohol dehydrates the body, and may cause mucosal damage in the GI tract. Try to avoid these when possible.
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