Fire up your digestive system
Ever wanna just roll over and nap after you eat? Or pop the button on your jeans for a little extra room? And how much do you love having a brick sitting in your stomach after dinner? It’s awesome right? (sarcasm)
Your food is supposed to be energizing not draining. If you are not feeling 100% after a meal you need to fix that!
Picture yourself bounding away from the dinner table like a happy puppy. Moving lightly through your day because every morning you took a couple simple kitchen ingredients and fired up your digestive furnace for the day. You’re now burning through your meals and using that energy to make yourself a better person. Sounds superb doesn’t it?!
Seriously though food is supposed fuel you up not slow you down. Your digestive system’s job is simply to break down your food into its very basic components for your body to absorb, utilize and then eliminate.
It’s not supposed to be hard to do but if you're not starting your morning off right, digestion becomes a huge task for your body and actually steals energy that could be utilized somewhere to build muscle, fight off invaders or build and repair cells.
Your digestive juices need to be strong because your stomach acid is very important for:
- killing harmful bacteria and parasites ingested with your food
- breaking your proteins down into smaller, useable components
- absorbing your vitamin B12 and minerals such as iron and calcium
- signalling your pancreas to create enzymes for the chemical digestion of your food
- and initiating the muscular contractions of your intestines to keep your food moving through quickly
If you don’t have that digestive fire you’re not going to get very far.
The two most common things we seem to cherish are time and money. If your digestion is weak you definitely won’t be getting your bang for your buck when you are eating high quality, nutritious foods and you’re wasting time on so many levels. So let’s get your money’s worth and harvest all that energy from your food to put it good use so you can feel like a million bucks and add some time to your clock.
While your digestive system is a complex system I would like to focus on your stomach. It's an easy place for you to start working on with some simple drink recipes. You can get these recipes via PDF instantly here.
Stomach acid, is an important part of our gastric juice. Your stomach is where chewed food is held in a bath tub of acid (known as hydrochloric acid or HCl). Here it turns into goo that drains out in little squirts into your small intestine.
You need to have plenty of stomach acid at a specific pH to turn your food from big chunks into a smoothie like liquid so the rest of your body can effectively finish the chemical digestion process in your intestinal tract.
If you have an under-active stomach with a low volume of acid you could notice the feeling of things slowing down. If your energy wanes after you eat or you feel like there has been a rock sitting in your belly forever the quantity or quality of your gastric juice could be the culprit.
Improper Food Combinations
There are parietal cells in the stomach lining that produce your HCl. The strength of the acid, the pH, varies depending on what food needs digesting.
In general, carbohydrate rich foods require a slightly higher pH during the digestion process while protein rich foods need a slightly lower pH. You've likely heard the whole "don't eat meat and potatoes" speech before. Well this is why. Having a high carbohydrate with a rich protein can cause somewhat of a stomach acid "neutralization". This could be a reason for your stomach struggling thru the meal and perhaps your body is telling you that food combo wasn't ideal.
- Steer clear of drinking anything with meals. Don’t waste all that precious stomach acid by diluting it with water or worse milk/beer/wine/kombucha/etc. Small sips of something during a meal is ok but don’t chug a glass of water or whatever until you've waited at least 2 hours after a meal. If you HAVE to drink with your meal just know that you're adding more stress and extra time to your digestive system. Over time a slow digestive system will start to show up as signs elsewhere in your body.
- Some pharmaceuticals or overuse of over the counter drugs like antacids could cause your stomach to stop producing stomach acid.
Heartburn can actually be a sign of very little stomach acid. It feels like maybe it’s too much because your stomach is working on overdrive to slosh the acid around which ends up splashing too high up. If this is a frequent problem for you, you need to get it under control before it causes serious damage to your tissues. Do not hesitate to talk with your trusted health care professional to help you get your heartburn managed quickly!
Let’s light your digestive fire, shall we. There are several ways to do this. I have 3 of my favorite drink recipes in a PDF download available here. Super simple and easy to do. I promise!
Eat, drink & think well,