Most people when eating think about satisfying their taste buds, but they are rarely concerned about eating foods that help with digestion.
They do not consider the consequences of eating what they eat. In other words, they look for instant satisfaction, tomorrow is not in the picture.
The media wants us to believe that having digestive problems is normal. We are bombarded with adverts of medicines that will supposedly heal the digestive problems.
But truth is, there are foods that can naturally improve your digestion.
Some of the digestive problems are constipation, IBS, Heartburn, bloating, diverticulitis, gallstones, and peptic ulcers.
Here is a list of some of the foods that help with digestive problems.
Consuming seeds benefits the digestive process because seeds, in general, are high in soluble fiber.
Fiber helps to move the food through the digestive system.
Seeds are also high in omega 3 fatty acids, which improve digestion and reduce inflammation as well as cholesterol levels.
Chia Seeds: They are tasteless and full of soluble fiber. Two tablespoons of chia seeds contain 33% of the suggested daily intake of fiber.
They are easy to add to your diet. You can grind them and sprinkle over your meals for easier digestion.
When mixed with water it becomes a gelatin substance that expands making you feel satisfied.
Flaxseed: Thirty grams of flaxseed contains 8.7g of fiber. It is best to consume flaxseed in a ground form. The whole seed can be hard to digest. Ground flaxseed can be sprinkled on stews, soups or cereals.
Pumpkin Seeds: They are high in fiber and omega 3 fatty acids, protein, iron, magnesium, zinc and healthy fats.
They also contain chlorophyll which alkalizes and cleanses the body naturally, preventing inflammation.
You can use pumpkin seeds in many ways, eat them as is, add them to your smoothies, pasta, stews or cereals.
Hemp Seeds: These are a high source of soluble fiber and are easily digested. They provide essential fatty acids, which help with digestion.
Here are some of the fermented foods that can aid digestion:
Natto is made out of soybeans and the bacteria Bacillus subtilis. The mixture is then left to ferment.
It is very popular in Japan where many Japanese eat it as breakfast.
This fermented food has quite a strong taste, so you may not like it at first try, but it will help in restoring the gut flora.
Natto is an excellent source of fiber, proteins, calcium, manganese, iron, copper, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus and selenium.
Seoul Kimchi Original 28oz (1.75LB) Fresh & Healthy All Natural Gluten Free MADE UPON ORDERKimchi is a traditional Korean food made out of fermented cabbage, mixed with garlic, vinegar, salt, chilled pepper and some spices. Koreans eat kimchee with every meal. It is high in fiber and contributes to a healthy gut.
This is the Western version of fermented cabbage. Fermented foods were used prior to the existence of fridges as fermentation was the method used for preserving food. Sauerkraut contains high levels of fiber, vitamins and minerals.
This is a fermented Japanese food made out of soy, the koji fermentation culture and different grains. Miso helps in the digestion of other foods and also restores the gut flora.
Tempeh originated from Indonesia. It is fermented soy and is a great choice for people that have trouble digesting beans and legumes. It is high in fiber, low in sodium and high in other minerals and vitamins.
This is an ancient fermented drink made with tea, sugar, and an active starter culture. Because it is fermented it helps with digestion and reducing inflammation. It is easy to prepare at home provided you have the active starter culture. It is an acquired taste, so do not give up when you first try it.
Any other fermented vegetables, like beets or carrots, will have the same benefits as the fermented cabbage. Pickles are also a great source of probiotics since they are fermented.
Bob’s Red Mill Organic Oats Rolled Thick, 16 Ounce (Pack of 4)Oat is a great food full of soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber when mixed with water becomes a gel.
This gel slows digestion and allows vitamins, minerals and nutrients to be absorbed by the intestine walls.
This also delays sugar absorption which helps regulate the glucose levels.
The insoluble fiber helps to push all the waste out of your body and keep you regular. And regular bowel movements are important to keep toxins out of your body.
Pumpkin is low in starches and sugars but it is high in soluble fiber and water. Fiber helps with digestion and constipation problems.
Pumpkin is also high in potassium. Potassium and water help with bloating problems.
The Green Smoothie Recipe Book: Over 100 Healthy Green Smoothie Recipes to Look and Feel AmazingGreens are an incredible source of minerals, vitamins and fiber.
The chlorophyll in the greens alkalizes and cleanses the body. You can enjoy the greens raw or cooked, steamed, in soups or in delicious smoothies.
The saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” may actually be right. Apples contain natural pectin which is high in soluble fiber.
A cup of unsweetened applesauce contains 3 grams of fiber, which is about 11% of the recommended daily intake.
Fiber is beneficial for the digestive system and great to avoid constipation. The pectin also acts as a mild laxative.
Apples also help reduce inflammation and they are full of vitamins and minerals.
Sweet potatoes are a high source of potassium and magnesium, both of which are necessary to keep a healthy gut.
They contain mainly insoluble fiber, which helps in moving the food and then the stool through the digestive system.
It is best to consume sweet potatoes with the skin to take advantage of all the fiber in the skin.
Beets are among the foods that help with digestion. They help to detoxify the body and cleanse the liver. It helps in regulating the digestive system.
They are also delicious. There are a variety of ways to eat beets.
Besides being good for so many things, broccoli is great for the digestive system as it contains high fiber and vitamin B6.
Vitamin B is great for relaxing your body especially when you are stressed. When stressed the digestive system suffers.
The high amount of Vitamin B in broccoli calms you down allowing the body to functions optimally.
Other natural calming foods high in fiber are pumpkin, bananas, sweet potatoes.
Bananas are rich in soluble and insoluble fiber, which make them great for digestion problems.
One medium sized banana has about 3 grams of fiber. Bananas contain high amounts of pectin, which help to detoxify the body.
They also work as prebiotics, which stimulate the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. Thus they aid in digestion and restore regular bowel movements.
It is also rich in digestive enzymes that are very helpful in the digestion of food and absorption of nutrients.
You can eat a banana just like that or add it to oatmeal (my favorite).
The above are just a few of the foods that aid digestion. Most vegetables and fruits will benefit the digestive system because they are rich in fiber.
Consuming daily servings of fiber will ensure a healthier digestive system.
However, make sure that you drink a lot of water while consuming fiber. Failure to do so can lead to dehydration and more digestive problems.
Kiwi is another fruit that is rich in soluble and insoluble fiber.
Little wonder it is on our list of foods that help with digestion.
It also contains unique digestive enzymes that help with protein digestion. And like banana, it acts as prebiotics that boosts natural growth of the beneficial bacteria in your gut.
In addition to eating foods that help with digestion, staying hydrated does also wonders for your digestion. The digestive system needs water to break down food into smaller molecules, to extract nutrients and for the body to absorb those nutrients.
If you are dehydrated the body will struggle to perform digestive functions or even to pass waste. That is why we become constipated.
There are a variety of water bottles available that you can carry for ease of regular drinking throughout the day.
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This article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not intend to diagnose or treat any disease.