It is very common to have digestive problems. Flatulence, constipation, heartburn, bloating and other discomfort can strike at any time. Some people think that eating healthy is enough, but many other factors can affect your digestion. Therefore, you should also follow some healthy habits to avoid digestive problems.
The truth is that these digestive problems do not just cause discomfort. In the long run, they can become complicated and cause greater problems than the simple discomfort of suffering from them. Often , though, a few simple changes in how you eat and your overall lifestyle can help drive away digestive problems.
Healthy habits to avoid digestive problems
1. Keep your body hydrated
The famous rule of “8 glasses of water a day” is essential for the state of digestion. Several studies have shown that water prevents constipation. The intestines need fluid to be able to transport food.
In addition, water facilitates the breakdown of food and the absorption of nutrients. If you do not drink enough water, you will miss out on many of the benefits of the foods you eat.
However, you do not only get water by drinking it. You can actually also get it from fruits and vegetables as well as juices, soups and teas. However, it is best to avoid sodas and beverages with caffeine.
2. Eat only what you need
Overeating does not mean an improved intake of food. In fact , overeating causes a heavy feeling, indigestion and many other problems.
When eating in large quantities, the body has to work harder to process the larger quantities. It thus produces more enzymes to break down food, forcing it to produce more stomach acid, causing acid to pass through the esophagus.
Overeating also causes flatulence and increases metabolism, resulting in fatigue, sweating and a hot feeling.
3. Balance your diet to avoid digestive problems
Your meals should consist of vegetables, protein and healthy carbohydrates. Dr. Gonzalo Guerra, a specialist at the Digestive Diseases Center in Colombia, recommends minimizing fat intake. In terms of protein, it is best to eat low-fat meats such as turkey, chicken and rabbit.
Processed foods typically contain trans fat, which is associated with problems with the cardiovascular system and stomach, such as stomach ulcers, colitis and irritable bowel syndrome. These foods also contain additives that, according to studies, cause increased intestinal permeability, which can cause intestinal inflammation, headaches and food allergies.
In addition , omega-3 fatty acids are very beneficial for the health of the stomach. On the one hand, they help satisfy hunger, reducing the need to overeat. On the other hand, they facilitate the absorption of nutrition. Some studies suggest that fatty acids may even prevent inflammation and stomach ulcers.
4. Eat fiber
Foods rich in fiber have several benefits for both stomach health and good digestion. Fiber helps cleanse the intestinal tract and increase the volume of stool, which helps fight constipation.
For this reason, medical professionals recommend eating nuts, legumes, vegetables, grains and fruits.
5. Manage your stress level if you want to avoid digestive problems
The digestive system and the brain are connected by more than 100 million nerve cells that transmit information in both directions. This is why you get butterflies in your stomach because of certain emotional stimuli.
Stress also affects the condition of the stomach, as several studies linking disorders such as diarrhea, constipation, heartburn and gastritis show. Performing stress management techniques, such as meditation, yoga and exercise, helps to improve one’s mental health and thus digestion.
6. Respect the times of the different meals and eat slowly
You should respect the times of the meals. Distractions such as watching television or work cause stress, even if you think you are relaxed. If you eat too fast, it also causes flatulence and reduced digestion.
Studies show that if one follows the times of the various meals, it leads to better digestion and improved health of the stomach in general.
Taking the time to chew your food also helps prevent stomach upset. The digestive process begins when you chew your food. When you cut and chop your food thoroughly with your teeth, it facilitates the work of digestive enzymes.
When you chew thoroughly, you also produce more saliva, which helps break down carbohydrates and fats and provides fluid for solid food so that they can move more easily through the digestive tract. Thus, one must pay close attention to this process to facilitate the digestion of food.
7. Make a diary of your diet
Not all foods affect people in the same way. Some people suffer from food intolerance or allergies and have more problems processing them. By making a diary of what one eats, one can know which foods one’s body responds well to and which ones cause discomfort.
8. Exercise to avoid digestive problems
Exercise has been shown to improve the condition of the digestive system. Physical activity reduces the passage of food through the digestive tract by 30%, increasing nutrient uptake. It also reduces constipation and irritation in the intestines.
9. Avoid bad habits
Habits such as smoking and drinking alcohol can cause digestive problems. Tobacco increases the likelihood of suffering from heartburn, stomach ulcers and, in the worst case, cancer of the gastrointestinal tract.
At the same time, alcohol also increases heartburn and acid regurgitation. It also promotes the growth of bacteria and can cause inflammatory bowel disease.
Say goodbye to digestive problems
It is not difficult to improve its digestion and avoid discomfort after meals. By making simple changes in your diet and daily habits, one can avoid digestive problems. As medical evidence illustrates, a healthy digestive system means a healthy body in general. These nine habits will also make you feel better in many ways!