When our digestive tracts are functioning properly, we feel a whole lot better than when we suffer from an upset stomach, reflux, heartburn, ulcers, constipation, Crohn’s Disease, or a host of other digestive illnesses. The body’s digestion system is so important for good health because it connects the nutrients in our body to our blood and to our cells that build better health.
Symptoms like gas, bloating, intestinal pain, and constipation, are not things we like to talk about. Many times we don’t even like to talk to our doctors about these uncomfortable subjects. The unfortunate thing is that these health challenges do not often get fixed without some attention to them. Plus, without either natural nutrition solutions, or medication if the problem is more serious, digestive issues leave your body less able to absorb the nutrients it needs.
How is digestion supposed to work? Let’s look at the processes our body utilizes to digest food. First, we have the mouth that is responsible for chewing our food. Our bodies use saliva to help break down complex carbohydrates and chewing prompts our digestive enzymes to do their job.
Next is the stomach, which is filled with acid to help digestion. When people experience problems like heartburn or reflux, there is a back up of the stomach contents into the esophagus. While this is unpleasant to live with, medications that neutralize stomach acid also make it hard for the stomach to digest food properly without that acid.
Our small intestines are the next part of the digestion process. It’s role is to finish breaking the food into the pieces that our body can absorb. When there is a problem in the intestines it is usually due to inflammation, and inflammation keeps our body from absorbing the nutrients it needs.
What causes the problems in each area of digestion? In the mouth, the first key to note about aging is that by age 30 we are already producing less of these digestive enzymes and some people are more affected by this shortage than others. People who are lactose intolerant or people who have trouble digesting foods like broccoli or beans without gas or bloating symptoms may need to supplement with some natural digestive enzymes.
Digestive Food Triggers
Certain drinks like coffee and soda can interfere with digestion and cause symptoms like heartburn. Stress also affects the stomach and its ability to function properly. There are safe, natural stress relief solutions that can calm the stomach and the nerves.
Scientists believe that many people have an imbalance between Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids in their daily diets. When this occurs there can be inflammation in the body. By increasing Omega-3’s and limiting Omega-6 cooking oils in the diet, the unhealthy ratio can be turned around.
We become what we eat. It makes sense that what we feed our body is going to produce good health or present us with challenges and illness. Eating fruits and vegetables, and avoiding processed foods as much as we can, builds better health. A healthy digestion system is needed to break down all foods, and yet if we haven’t been eating an optimal diet we may need to look at healing our digestive tract first.
Digestion is key to the staples of life for our bodies: proteins, carbohydrates, and fat. There are 20 amino acids in protein. Our bodies can make 12 of them and the other 8 we must get from our food. A healthy stomach will be able to process the proteins so they can be absorbed into the blood stream. Carbohydrates need a functioning stomach to break them down so that they can be absorbed and provide our cells with energy to power the body. Dietary fat is important to the body because our hormones, nerves, the brain, and the outer wall of our cells are mostly fat. It is processed in the small intestine and also absorbed in the body there.
It is easy to see that healthy digestion at each step is important for the body to absorb nutrients in order to be healthy, and also in order to feel good and not have the unwelcome symptoms and digestive problems that can occur. For many folks, this can be a vicious cycle instead of a normal process.
If digestive issues like upset stomach, reflux, heartburn, ulcers, constipation, Crohn’s Disease or other digestion related problems are a source of discomfort in your life, there are natural solutions for feeling better. Natural digestive enzymes can help the body process foods when it can’t do an optimal job on its own. Natural prebiotics and probiotics can balance and heal the digestive tract.
Natural Solutions for Better Digestion
There are natural, soothing herbs like Stomach Soothing Complex for upset stomach relief, and natural stress relief nutrients to calm the stomach. Natural, chewable calcium magnesium supplements can help with acid-stomach upset. Finally, omega-3 fatty acid supplements can improve the body’s balance of essential fatty acids and help eliminate inflammation. Natural supplements can be used in combination with each other if more than one is needed to address digestion issues. People who do not have life threatening illnesses that require medication, can find relief without side effects by using natural health solutions.