Sunday, April 8, 2012

Digestion: Boost Energy, Recover Better, Be Happier

It isn't too hard to believe that the digestive system is one of the most important and hard-working systems in our bodies. Its job is to extract nutrients from foods, digest nutrients into small units for absorption (vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc.) and to separate waste products.
Why is healthy digestion so important?
It's pretty simple. Poor digestion results in poor mineral and nutrient absorption. This is because the digestive system has lost some of the ability to turn what's consumed into a form the body can use. So it doesn't matter how healthy or "well" you believe you're eating, if you have a damaged or poor functioning digestive system, you will not be getting the full benefits of what you're consuming. With today's busy lifestyles, many of us are susceptible to poor digestion.
Symptoms of poor digestion can include:
  • Bloating
  • Gas & abdominal pain
  • Low energy & chronicle fatigue
  • Reflux & heartburn
  • Constipation & Diarrhoea
  • Poor skin & hair quality
  • Allergies
  • Poor training recovery
  • Sore joints
  • Weak immune system (getting sick frequently)
  • Chronic conditions such as depression & anxiety
  • Cancer (extreme but research has shown links)
What can cause poor digestion?
  • Stress
  • Processed foods
  • High sugar consumption
  • Alcohol
  • High intake of red meat
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Diet changes
  • Artificial additives (aspartame sweetener (951) being one of the main culprit, hidden in most "sugar free" diet drinks, chewing-gums, low sugar chocolates, Equal sweetener, etc)
  • Anti-biotics & other medications (anti-biotics and strong medications create enzyme imbalances)
  • Age (as you age, digestive enzyme production decreases)
How to improve your digestion:
  • Eat raw foods which have living enzymes. This includes: Raw fruit & vegetables (uncooked and well washed - preferably organic): help to break-down carbs; Raw sprouts: Soak these to re-active enzymes. Examples include broccoli, radish, cress, beans (mung, amarillo, peas, etc) and more; Raw nuts & seeds (unroasted and preferably unsalted): Help break down fat; Raw pineapple: Helps with the digestion of protein
  • Digestive enzymes supplement
  • Glutamine to restore colon lining, recovery and also assist in digestive enzyme balance
So, if you want to have more energy, recover better, be happier & even live longer, start working on your digestion. Not only will you feel better, it could be the key to you losing extra weight, fitting into your old jeans and reaching your body & performance goals.

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