We’ve all heard the expression, ‘trust your gut.’ In natural medicine, the gut is considered our second brain and oftentimes, when it comes to making choices that keep us healthy, it’s the one we should pay attention to. Your digestive system breaks down the foods you eat into the nutrients your body needs. If you neglect your digestive health, your body could run into problems absorbing those nutrients.
Your digestive health is directly impacted by the foods you eat and the lifestyle you live. By taking steps to improve your digestive health, you’ll help your digestive system to function more efficiently, improving your overall health and sense of well-being. The importance of a well-working digestive system cannot be overstated or under-appreciated. Yet many of us consistently make choices that are counterproductive to keeping this vital system working well.
Recently dubbed our “second brain,” your digestive system can profoundly influence your mood, learning, memory, sleep, heart health, and even your bones. Balancing your digestive Agni is a key principle in ayurvedic medicine. That’s why Ayurveda recommends a number of general practices for better digestion.
Consuming a diet that’s high in fiber and rich in whole grains, vegetables, legumes, and fruits can improve your digestive health (1). A high-fiber diet helps to keep food moving through your digestive tract, making you less likely to get constipated.
A high-fiber diet can also help you prevent or treat various digestive conditions, such as diverticulosis, hemorrhoids, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In addition, it can help you achieve or maintain a healthy weight (2).
Fiber is commonly classified as soluble, which dissolves in water, or insoluble, which doesn’t dissolve.
- Soluble fiber. This type of fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material. It can help lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Soluble fiber is found in oats, peas, beans, apples, citrus fruits, carrots, barley, and psyllium.
- Insoluble fiber. This type of fiber promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk, so it can be of benefit to those who struggle with constipation or irregular stools. Whole-wheat flour, wheat bran, nuts, beans, and vegetables, such as cauliflower, green beans, and potatoes, are good sources of insoluble fiber.
Smoothies are quick and easy and can be healthy additions to any diet. You can have a smoothie in between meals as a snack or even as a meal replacement. Drinking smoothies is a great way to increase your fiber intake to meet your daily requirement.
Below find 5 high fiber smoothies to help improve your digestion.
With blueberries, spinach, and banana, this Superfood Smoothie from Create Kids Club is a nutrient powerhouse that is a simple and delicious way to get a high fiber meal into your diet.
This recipe from Super Healthy Kids may seem like it’s for.. kids, but this smoothie is loaded with broccoli to help give you a boost of fiber. If you haven’t used broccoli in a smoothie before, you really can’t taste it with the flavors of the fruit. It is, however, helpful to have a really good blender so you don’t have broccoli florets or chunks that won’t fit through your straw.
Oh She Glows blogger Angela Liddon combines frozen kale and almond milk with banana, dates, and cinnamon—plus a generous spoonful of unsweetened cocoa powder. Hemp seeds add an extra dose of fiber, with one gram per tablespoon.
The gorgeous, deep-purple hue of this smoothie by Kate Gavlick, MScN, of VeguKate comes from two fiber-rich fruits: the cup of blackberries, which pack a whopping seven grams, and the figs, which add another eight.
Fiber slows the rate that sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream, makes your intestines move faster, cleans your colon, acting like a scrub brush, and helps keep you regular. All important to having a healthy and thriving digestive system.
How much fiber do I need?
The American Heart Association recommends between 25 and 38 grams of fiber a day in a well-balanced diet.
Digestion is an amazingly profound mind-body-spirit multidimensional process. Your digestive system is responsible for processing not only all your food, but also all of your daily emotions, thoughts, and experiences. If you want better immunity, improved digestion and better mental clarity put your focus on rebuilding your digestive health.