Healthy Digestion is the Foundation of Good Health

Principles for Healthy Digestion

  1. Chew your food thoroughly; digestion begins in the mouth where enzymes are released through chewing and saliva.
  2. Try a food rotation/elimination diet where you eliminate a highly allergic or difficult and congesting food like dairy, wheat, eggs, nuts, soy, corn, etc. You must allow 72 hours of each food to be eliminated then re-introduced. Another option is eating a clean diet for 30 days avoiding these foods then re-introducing. IBS consider FODMAPS diet. Also consider food allergy and sensitivity testing.
  3. Eat an alkaline diet. Foods high in acid such as sugar, dairy, breads and other refined foods and meats are difficult to digest-eat a mostly plant based but not raw diet.
  4. Eat foods easy to digest such as cooked fruits, vegetables, soups, rice and other whole (non-glutenous) grains, fish and poultry.
  5. Use natural antimicrobials in cooking to reduce bad gut bacteria and pathogens; oregano, ginger, garlic, sage, thyme, rosemary, and use fermented foods such as unsweetened kefir, miso or occasional plain yogurt, sauerkraut, and probiotics (good bacteria such as fermented miso, yogurt, sauerkraut) and pre-biotics (dandelion greens, asparagus, leek, garlic, onion, chicory, yams) to replenish good gut bacteria.
  6. Eat and cook with foods to stimulate and warm digestion such as bitter foods; turmeric, ginger, dandelion greens, arugula, aloe, herbal bitters. Herbal bitters stimulate the digestive process and have been used for hundreds of years. Also consider HCI and Digestive Enzymes. If your system is “overactive” use the right nutrients to slow things down.
  7. Understand your own energy- is your system too “hot” or “cold”? If you have a lot of digestive heat, eating raw foods can be helpful. If your system is “cold” eat warm and cooked foods.
  8. Repair and soothe mucosal lining of the stomach with slippery elm, licorice root, aloe leaf juice, calendula (aloe is naturally a slight laxative).
  9. Eat to nourish the brain gut connection, herbs which are calming for brain gut connection include chamomile, hops, valerian, lemon balm, milky oat.
  10. Engage in a mind body practice or daily relaxation
  11. Take a day such as a Sunday to rest digestion eating broths, fresh juices, soups and steamed vegetables