Improve your Digestive Health
Your is a lot like the fullback of the rugby team – it doesn’t usually get the credit for winning the game, but as soon as it doesn’t function properly your team is in trouble. There are things in life we simply cannot live without (food, water, oxygen, celebrity gossip) and the digestive system is one of these.
In essence, this complex system is responsible for absorbing and transporting all the nutrients
your body needs to function. It also gets rid of all the stuff you don’t need – toxins and things like that. Even as you are sitting there now, reading this, your digestive system is hard at work breaking down your last meals, its different parts working together to extract all those lovely macro- and micro nutrients.Read More »
So let’s meet the players. In the game of digestive health, the following systems play a role:
- The olfactory system. In other words, your nose. Before you even take a bite of your meal, the nose is already sending signals to your brain, triggering the saliva glands in your mouth.
- The mouth. As soon as you take that first bite, the glands in your mouth excrete even more saliva to moisten the food (making it easier to swallow) and introduce a natural digestive enzyme called amylase that commences the digestive process.
- Next in line is the pharynx, the oesophagus, a whole bunch of very important sphincters and, finally, the stomach. In the stomach your food is then reduced to chyme, a liquefied blob containing the acids and natural digestive enzymes necessary for proper digestion.
- The small intestine consisting of the duodenum, the jejunum and the ileum. During this part of the digestive process we have delightful cameos by both the pancreas and the liver that contribute enzymes and bile respectively. The first two sections of the small intestine is more concerned with nutrient absorption than digestion, while the ileum focuses on the messier part of digestion, namely converting indigestible matter into faeces.
- Finally we have the large intestine. The large intestine consists of the cecum, the colon and the rectum – comprising the home stretch so to speak.
Other organs that pitch in along the way include the gallbladder, a whole bevy of glands, as well as the central nervous system.
As you can see, the digestive process is a large and very complex production. With this many players, it stands to reason that there are a whole host of things which could go wrong. Digestive problems
like IRB IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), bloating, constipation, heartburn and diarrhoea plague a large percentage of the population and have put the spotlight on digestive health.
Some of the reasons for poor digestion include:
- Too little fibre in our diets. Think of fibre as tiny little brooms sweeping clean your insides. No brooms? Lots of gross things stay behind. The daily fibre requirement of a healthy adult comes to about 25-30 grams. One slice of wholegrain bread contains around 1.4 grams of fibre. Nutritionists recommend that we get our fiber from fresh fruit, veggies and whole grains. (Hint: Blueberries and broccoli will, respectively, give you the most bang for your digestive buck.)
- Not chewing properly. Your grandmother was right, chewing is important. If you don’t chew properly your digestive system has to work twice as hard to get things going, plus there is not enough amylase to go around.
- Drinking while eating. Ingesting any type of fluid while eating dilutes the acids that should be digesting your food and hampers the digestion process.
- Stress. Your body is greatly affected by stress and the digestive system is no exception.
Are you hoping to restore your digestive health? If so, you will be happy to know that there are many natural, gentle ways of doing so. Natural digestive health products
will help you to get back on track in no time. Why not have a look at the products that we have in stock?