Four supplements - natural digestion improvement
Back in his day, Hippocrates said: "The death of a man begins with his gut." The digestive system is very sensitive to stress, and these days, when stress is a daily occurrence for many, discomfort in the stomach and intestines has become a serious issue. The opposite is also true: a healthy gastrointestinal tract (GIT) improves one’s psycho-emotional state and contributes to his stress resistance.
Let's pay attention to four important components that can help stabilize the digestive organs.
Probiotics are bacteria and yeasts present in the digestive system that support healthy gut microflora that should be maintained throughout life. A healthy balanced microflora inhibits the growth of pathogens of infectious diseases and increases immunity. “Good” intestinal bacteria contribute to the synthesis of immunoglobulins that protect the body from the penetration of pathogenic microbes. The composition and condition of the intestinal microflora also determine the biosynthesis and absorption of B vitamins, which are necessary for normal human life.
In addition to the necessary and beneficial bacteria, there are also pathogenic bacteria in the intestines, which are activated by improper nutrition, stress, and exacerbation of gastrointestinal diseases. This negatively affects the state of the human nervous system, leads to bad mood, apathy, and depression. Symptoms of an imbalance in the intestinal microflora, or dysbacteriosis, can be general weakness, fatigue, abdominal pain, heartburn, rash on the body, and poor appetite.
The problem can often be solved by changing the lifestyle, giving up bad habits, especially in nutrition, when the body, using its natural reserves and capabilities, can restore health on its own. In other cases, supplementation with probiotics may be required to correct gastrointestinal problems.
Probiotics are found in natural fermented milk products and in foods fortified with beneficial bacteria during the manufacturing process. Special additives have been developed in which one or more types of beneficial microorganisms are present. They do not have negative side effects on the human body, but for maximum effectiveness and the right choice of probiotics that you need, consult your doctor.
The beneficial properties of ginger - a herbaceous plant - were known in Southeast Asia several millennia ago. Its root has been used as a spice and as a cleanser, antipyretic, and tonic. It contains the alkaloid gingerol, which gives a burning taste and has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
The great scientist, thinker and physician of the Middle Ages Avicenna wrote: “Ginger promotes digestion and is suitable for cold in the liver and stomach.”
Research on the qualities of ginger is ongoing. According to some of them, ginger has several benefits:
- it promotes the removal of gases during bloating;
- it stimulates the pancreas;
- it speeds up metabolism;
- it activates peristalsis, resulting in faster removal of toxins;
- it is an effective remedy for nausea;
- it supports oral health by reducing the risk of periodontal disease.
In China, ginger is considered an adaptogen, which helps a person fight stress, adapt faster to changes in the external environment. In combination with green tea, ginger is used as an antidepressant. With regular use of this spice, the cognitive functions of the brain improve.
For maximum benefits, it is best to use fresh ginger root. There are many recipes for dishes and drinks with it, especially in Asian cuisine. However, it must be applied with caution. Ginger is contraindicated in people suffering from stomach ulcers, gastritis, kidney, and liver diseases. In this case, a consultation with a doctor is required, who will give the necessary recommendations on the possible replacement of the natural root with food supplements containing its extracts.
Eating foods rich in fiber - dietary fibers of plant origin that are not digested by the body - is one of the most important ways to maintain proper functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. Fiber is divided into soluble and insoluble in water. Most plant foods contain both types of fiber in varying proportions. Soluble fiber serves as food for the beneficial microflora of the intestine, while insoluble fiber contributes to its normal regular emptying.
The National Academy of Medicine (USA) recommends up to 38 grams of fiber per day for men and up to 25 grams for women. The British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine recommends following the “rainbow principle”: eat five servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit daily, each of which should correspond to one of the seven colors.
There are many types of dietary fiber supplements, but nutritionists advise to give preference to natural foods. The most fiber-rich are bran, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, avocados, bananas, etc. The more varied your diet is, the more benefits you will have for your health.
Water, as you know, is the main component of the human body, and its lack immediately leads to deterioration in human well-being, in particular, to gastrointestinal problems. The viscosity of the gastric juice increases, its normal concentration is lost, the digestion process is accordingly disturbed, resulting in intestinal constipation.
Among experts, there are different recommendations regarding the required amount of daily fluid consumption. The most famous formula is 30 ml times body weight. For example, for a person weighing 70 kg, this number will be 2.1 liters. It is important to note that this includes not only pure water, but also the liquid contained in drinks (tea, coffee, milk, juices, etc.), and food. Of course, this volume is adjusted considering your physical activity, season, individual characteristics of the body.
Problems that are embarrassing to talk about
Bloating, constipation, diarrhea - abdominal discomfort – are the problems that are generally “inappropriate” for discussion. Do not be embarrassed, talk about this topic with your doctor, and find a way out of a difficult situation. Diversify your diet, use, if necessary, nutritional supplements, and you will get rid of the troubles and embarrassments associated with digestion.