WHO CUT THE CHEESE???????
Feel like you’re constantly battling the fart monster? Enzymes to the rescue! Even though the word “fart” may make you want to hide from the world, the actual act of farting might disgust you even more. Especially, if you’re the victim of a fart assault (who hasn’t been?)
Sadly, we can’t press charges on these deadly culprits (or those who freely pass gas on innocent victims). When you’re a kid, and discover these entertaining noises coming out of your exterior, it can make family life quite entertaining and provide endless laughter. But, as you get older and find yourself at work, in an elevator or even on a date, the last thing you want to do is embarrass yourself and look rude in public place if your stomach fills up with gas. Then, it’s not so much fun anymore.
Many of us have been out to a work dinner, or with friends, and have ordered food that didn’t quite agree with us. Let me paint the picture. You’re dressed nicely and feeling good. At the beginning of the night, you’re enjoying pleasant conversation and order steak with potatoes and vegetables on the side. You delight in the meal, sipping your wine and eating your tasty dish. After dinner, the table is cleared and the server asks what you would like for dessert. Your colleagues or friends order cheesecake and coffee. You do, too.
As the evening and conversations continue, you begin to feel bubbles building up in your stomach. They escalate, turning into extreme pressure, as you feel your abdomen morphing into what must look like a woman who’s four months pregnant. Now, your pants are tighter and you still have dessert and more conversation to go. Have you ever found yourself in this situation, or a similar one, where you couldn’t exit to a bathroom and were stuck to endure the pain? I think most people have, and it isn’t fun. How can you get relief from gas that invades your body at the worst times?
Enzymes play an important and vital role in your digestion. When you eat food that’s overcooked or fried, it loses most of its enzymes. Digestive enzymes are complex proteins and work hard in the body all day eliminating, delivering and synthesizing a number of ingredients and chemicals that your body uses during waking hours. When your body produces enzymes, their job is to stimulate chemical changes in the foods passing through the gut. Your pancreas takes a lead role in producing digestive enzymes for the body and it has to keep up by producing pancreatic enzymes.
Eating fast food, junk food or packaged food, and chewing a lot of gum all contribute to the body’s inability to produce adequate enzymes and absorb food. Also, not eating enough raw veggies can have the same effect. As we age, we lose the ability to produce more enzymes, which can wreak havoc on our digestion and lead to numerous types of diseases.
I’ve had times in my life where my body was under a lot of stress. I’ve also spent a lot of time eating on the run and not taking the time to sit down and relax while eating. There have been times where I found myself consuming more cooked protein and lacking raw fruits and vegetables. When I used to meet up with friends for dinner, I would almost always end up with gas or bloat after every meal. Once I felt myself going in a worse direction with my digestion, I took charge and started incorporating some helpful habits that have saved me from uncomfortable situations and prevented me from future health problems.
Many people I speak with have digestive issues, gallbladder problems and ulcers. There are a lot of people today that suffer in silence and are given prescription drugs to treat symptoms without addressing their core issue. Digestive enzymes can help heal and prevent a lot inflammatory, gut-related issues. Changing just a few things in your day and incorporating certain foods can help with enzyme production and help keep your digestion operating smoothly.
If you take a moment to address your core issues, you’ll find that simple changes will give you a world of relief. I want to help, and put together a quick list of things that you can begin to incorporate into your own regimen. Along with whole food digestive enzymes, probiotics are another wonderful and needed supplement to include in your gut healing (more on that in a later post). Keep in mind that the word “supplement” means “in addition to,” so eating and basing your health on organic whole foods is truly the key to having better enzyme absorption.
Tips for better digestion
- Increase your fiber through fruit. The World Health Organization recommends at least 15 to 25 grams of fiber a day, while other people in my field suggest a higher number (especially if you sit down all day or have a higher protein diet, which can slow digestion). Aim for at least 30 grams (men should go a little higher), and see what your stomach allows since everyone’s fiber tolerance is different. Fruits that are high in fiber include raspberries, strawberries, oranges, pineapple and bananas.
- Incorporate organic aloe juice. Wonderful for healing your gut lining, aloe juice has over 500 minerals. Try adding it to your smoothies.
- Take the Garden Of Life, Raw Enzymes supplement. I usually take one of these before most meals to help absorb my food. I notice a huge difference if I don’t take one and eat animal protein or am eating under stress.
- Don’t chew gum, or suck on mints. When you chew gum, or mints, for a certain amount of time, you’re tricking your body into thinking you’re eating food and the pancreas is actually overworking.
- Stay away from stressful people. People who eat fast or stress you out should be avoided while you’re eating (and in general!).
- Don’t drink during your meals. Drinking interrupts digestion of food.
- Add probiotics into your routine. Taking a probiotic in the evening before bed can help.
- Walk around after you eat. Avoid sitting too long post-meal; walking can stimulate digestion.
- Balance out animal protein. Eat more veggies and fruits, if possible, to round out protein intake.
- Avoid GMO, conventional foods. These foods have been sprayed with toxic chemicals that will kill your digestion.
- Drink herbal tea. Sipping ginger, chamomile or peppermint tea can aid digestion.
- Smell lavender. Enjoying the scent of organic lavender oil before eating can help relax you and set the stage for healthy digestion.
Okay, there it is – your simple, 12-step digestion to-do list. Remember, digestion plays a big role in nourishment, immunity and your mood. Taking a prescription drug, or ignoring the signs, aren’t smart moves. Try to eliminate bad habits and replace them with some of the above recommendations to feel better. Good luck!
With more than 24 years of diverse experience in the health and wellness industry, Jaime has
dedicated her life to caring for and enabling people to increase their overall wellness.