Are you getting all the nutrients your food has to offer?

Written by Nabila Bhimji

A Registered Holistic Nutritionist, a certified Food Psychology Coach, Mind-Body/Coach, Food Relationship Coach, and Life Coach from Coquitlam, BC. - Canada

October 20, 2014

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Many of my clients and people I meet ask me this same question “If you could only suggest one thing we should do to improve our health what would that be” While there could be a number of individualized reasons for a person’s health to be out of balance, something everyone can do to improve their well being is to optimize their digestions.

No matter what I suggest that you do on your path to balance and recovery, if you are not getting the nutrients you need from your food, you’re not going to see improvements. If all you get from eating is a bloated tummy and embarrassing and gas, you will always feel hungry and low in energy and mood. Remember you body does not know what a calorie is, it only know if it is receiving the nutrients it needs to survive and regenerate its cells. You will eat less and have more energy if you allow yourself to receive all the nutrients your food has to offer.

The most beneficial thing that you can do for healthy digestion is to chew chew chew you food. I mean at least 25-40 times until it has a paste like consistency with no lumpy bits. This will take off an extreme amount of stress from you digestive system and optimize nutrient absorption.

Other helpful tips:

Drink a glass of warm water with two table spoon of lemon juice in it. This will not only help the digestive system function better, it helps to detoxify the liver and alkalize the body. Do this first thing in the morning.

Eat you food away from any and all distractions. Do your body a favor and step away from that computer or T.V. while eating.  If you are distracted you are not concentrating on chewing and that food is going down your throat in a big hard to digest lump. Besides, being mindful of the tastes and textures of your food will leave you feeling satisfied with less. A big win if weight loss is also your goal.

Take a few deep breaths before your first bite of food, have some soothing music playing in the background, light a candle or whatever you need to do to not be stressed while you eat. Your body can not and will not properly digest your food if you’re stressed. Due to our body’s flight or fight response your body will use all its resources to fight a stressor, leaving nothing left for digestion.

These are some great foods that can aid in your digestive health:

  • Fermented foods like sauerkraut, miso, kefir (made from fermented milk), kimchi (Korean pickled cabbage),
  • Yogurt
  • Foods High in Omega 3  such as salmon,tuna, mackerel, walnuts, hemp, flax or chia seeds
  • Ginger
  • Peppermint

 

Additionally, staying hydrated and aiming for 25 grams of fiber per day will  play a major role in gut health, detoxification, and digestion.

You may also want to consider adding a high quality digestive enzyme to your supplement routine.

 

Happy eating!

 

*Image courtesy of Google images

 

 

 

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