Digestive problems can affect anyone during the course of their lives. However, for women, digestive problems can become a particularly prominent ailment during times of hormonal imbalance, such as menopause. Fortunately, there are habits you can change in order to reduce symptoms and restore good digestion. Continue reading to discover the top five habits you should adopt to restore a healthy digestive system.
Keeping a Balanced Diet
Your diet is one of the key factors in determining whether or not you experience good digestion. Diets that are high in fat or processed foods can disrupt your digestive system, making it difficult for your body to process carbohydrates, thus leading to bloating and gas. You should take care to get into the habit of including enough fiber in your diet. A diet that lacks fiber can slow down food's journey through the digestive tract, which can lead to conditions such as constipation.
Good digestion can also be achieved by getting into the habit of regularly exercising. Exercising can help to keep food moving through your digestive system, which will in turn help to limit digestive problems like constipation or bloating. Try to get into the habit of exercising for at least half an hour a day three or four times a week to see the most benefit.
Stress can cause your body to divert blood away from the digestive system, which can in turn cause it to slow down and increase the pressure put on it.Therefore, trying to get into the habit of relaxing and taking time for yourself to reduce stress can work wonders in achieving both good digestive health and overall peace of mind.
Making sure that you stay hydrated is not only essential to the health of your digestive system, but also to the health of your overall body. Current advice suggests that you should drink at least eight glasses of water every day. Water helps your digestive system by supporting your body and its ability to dissolve fats and soluble fiber, therefore allowing these substances to pass through your system more easily.
Cigarettes not only interfere with the function of your digestive system, but can also cause a hugely negative impact on the overall health of your entire body. Smoking is one of the most detrimental habits you can have, and getting out of this habit will have noticeable effects on aiding good digestion. It may be hard to quit, but it is worth the effort in both the short and long term.
Changing your lifestyle habits can go a long way in aiding good digestion. By following the five tips for changing the habits listed above, you can have a significantly positive impact on this menopause symptom and many others.
- National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. (2013). Smoking and the Digestive System. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/smoking/#otherharmful
- National Health Service UK. (2012). Digestive health. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/digestive-health/Pages/digestive-health.aspx
- Vorvick, L.J. (2012). Fiber: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclpedia. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002470.htm