Being Mindful of Digestive Health
Being Mindful of Digestive Health
Three Tips to a Healthier You
Our stomachs are sometimes referred to as our “core” mostly because they are quite literally at the core of our bodies, but did you know that your stomach is also at the core of your overall health? Often referred to as “The Second Brain” of the body, our digestive systems are responsible for 80% of our overall immunity and can affect nearly every aspect of our health. Your digestive health has the capability of affecting your vitamin production, immune responses, hormone regulations, ability to eliminate toxins and overall mental health. Nearly every aspect of how you think, feel and function can be affected by the health of your digestive system.
With all the ways we can be mindful about getting (or staying) healthy…we’re going to start at the core. Below we’ve gathered up some ideas to help you take charge of your digestive health and improve your overall health.
Eat Healthy Whole Foods
What Are “Whole Foods” and Why Do They Matter?
The term “whole foods” basically refers to any food that is in it’s natural, original state and hasn’t undergone processing. It’s basically the difference between a whole apple and a packaged cup of applesauce. Because much of the American lifestyle is so “grab-n-go” these days, many of us have relied on fast and convenient foods to keep up. The problem is that a lot of convenient and pre-packaged foods have either lost their full nutritional value during the production process or artificial ingredients and preservative have been added to them. This means that it’s possible you are either not getting the full nutritional value you think you’re getting or, worse, you are clogging up your digestive system with unnatural ingredients.
Whole foods are rich in phytochemicals, which are responsible for a myriad of health benefits spanning from good skin to reduced risk of disease. Compared with processed foods, they contain more vitamins, minerals, fiber and beneficial fats. Getting more whole foods in your diet can be easy and delicious. We tried 3 different recipes using healthy, whole foods that were both delicious and easy. Check out the links below for some pre-vetted recipes.
What Are Probiotics and Why Do They Matter?
Your body is made up of trillions of bacteria, often referred to as your “microbiome.” Some of the bacteria are “bad guy” bacteria (make you sick) and some of it is good. Probiotics are the beneficial “good guy” bacteria in your body. They are responsible for crowding out bad bacteria and producing the enzymes needed to kill them. Probiotics are located all throughout your body – in your mouth fighting tooth decay, in your eyes preventing infection, but especially in your stomach – the core of it all.
What you eat, how much you rest and your lifestyle can all affect how many probiotics are in your system. Stress and poor diet can decrease the number of probiotics in your body and weaken your immune system. It’s the reason why long hours and go-go-go turn into burn out and illness. But the good news is, you can give your body a boost naturally by incorporating probiotics into your diet. Probiotics are live bacteria that are found naturally in foods such as yogurt, dark chocolate, sourdough and lots of fermented foods. There are also several probiotic supplements on the market that allow you to add more probiotics to your system by simply taking a pill.
Want some direction? We hunted down this helpful guide: How to Choose the Best Probiotic Supplement
Massage For Digestive Health
Can Massage Help With Digestion?
It’s easy to see how massage can be used to heal sore muscles and joints or even provide calm and relaxation for the mind but what about digestive health? Well, we’re adding another item to the long list of benefits of regular massage– improved digestion!
Here’s a quick anatomy lesson – “peristalsis” is when the muscles of your intestine involuntarily contract to help process and digest your food. There are many things that can affect peristalsis and slow it down like what you eat and environmental factors. When peristalsis is slowed down it can result in conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, mineral deficiency and more. A full-body massage can keep peristalsis from slowing by stimulating movement in the intestines and keeping things in motion. Massage also helps the body rid itself of toxins and increase the release of enzymes, which are both crucial for healthy digestion.
BONUS! In celebration of our Mindful Movement, we are featuring a special offer on our Meditation Massage and Mindful Spa Experience. So now is your chance to start incorporating tip number three! Simply use the code MINDFUL for 10% OFF when you book online. Or call us directly at 775.772.0032 and mention the Mindful Movement.
We hope these three tips gave you some ideas and encouragement for building a stronger belly in 2018. Here’s to better digestive health!