Digestive issues are an all-too-common problem for people of all ages. Although some of us only occasionally experience digestive distress, others contend with it on a consistent basis. While troubled digestion can cause quite a bit of discomfort, effectively combating it isn’t as arduous a process as you may think. In fact, many people who suffer from digestive issues tend to make the problem worse without even realizing it. Anyone looking for effective ways to relieve troubled digestion should take care to avoid the following blunders.
Eating Foods That Are Conducive to Poor Digestion
Many of us unknowingly facilitate digestive issues by regularly consuming foods that are conducive to poor digestion. For example, fried foods – while delicious – can cause intense digestive distress, particularly when consumed on a consistent basis. Secondly, artificial sweeteners, like the ones found in many diet foods, are common culprits behind diarrhea, gas and bloating. When it comes to artificial sweeteners, take care to be particularly wary of sorbitol. Furthermore, despite having a number of health benefits, dairy products can present a number of difficulties for people with poor digestion. If you suffer from lactose intolerance, dairy products are likely to cause the same problems as artificial sweeteners. However, it may still be safe for you to consume hard cheeses and yogurt, as neither one contains lactose. Switching to lactose-free milk may also be worth considering. Acidic foods and fatty foods should also be avoided by anyone experiencing digestive problems.
Eating Too Much
There are a variety of reasons for which people consume too much food – with improper eating habits being among the most common. If you regularly skip meals or don’t get enough to eat, you’re liable to be ravenously hungry by the time you sit down to your first real meal of the day. Unfortunately, many of us tend to skip breakfast and/or lunch because of busy schedules. Even when not skipped entirely, these meals are often replaced by unsatisfying substitutes that fail to sufficiently fill us up. As a result, when dinner time rolls around, we’re often ready to consume everything in sight.
Not only is this approach to eating horrible for digestion, it can also be conducive to weight gain. To get a handle on this problem, make a point of eating three balanced meals a day and consuming healthy snacks between mealtimes. If you’ve grown accustomed to only eating one full meal a day, this will take some adjustment, but after a few weeks of maintaining proper eating habits, it should come as second nature.
Eating Too Quickly
Many of us have a habit of wolfing down our food in an expedient manner. While this may seem like an efficient way to eat, it can also give rise to digestive issues – in addition to presenting ample opportunities for choking. As is the case with skipping meals, some of us tend to eat quickly as a result of packed schedules and poor planning. You can get around this by giving yourself a comfortable amount of time to eat each meal. This may entail getting up earlier than you’d prefer, taking longer lunch breaks than you’re accustomed to or spending more time at the table than usual, but these minor inconveniences are well worth minimizing your digestive distress.
Not Seeking Medical Advice
If digestive issues have become a regular problem, it’s in your best interest to seek out medical advice. So, if you’ve found yourself unable to control your digestion problems, schedule a consultation with your doctor. This can provide you with peace of mind and help you identify the root cause(s) of your distress. Depending on the severity of the problem, your doctor may recommend certain medications, including probiotic supplements.
Persistent digestive distress can throw a wrench into every area of your life. Whether you’re plugging away at work, relaxing at home or out on the town, troubled digestion can put a damper on your plans. Additionally, many of us have a tendency to exacerbate digestion problems without even meaning to. Fortunately, getting digestive issues under control doesn’t have to be an uphill climb. More often than not, digestion problems can be reigned in with some minor lifestyle changes and a willingness to break away from learned behaviors. In the interest of getting your digestive system back on track, steer clear of the mistakes discussed above.