The First Healthy Day of Christmas: Keep your Digestion on Track!
This year I’m giving you all a gift: twelve healthy days of Christmas. Over the next twelve days I’ll share tips, recipes and advice to ensure that this holiday period is one of your healthiest, happiest yet.
With the holidays just around the corner, complete with turkey, stuffing and all the trimmings, what better time to focus on supporting optimal digestion. The holiday season is that time of the year when we gather with family and friends, spread good cheer, and of course eat way too much.
Most of us eat more in December than during any other month of the year. So it’s no surprise that some of us may experience some digestive upset such as bloating, gas, and indigestion over the holidays.
The following tips will help keep your digestive troubles on track over the holidays:
Enjoy the festivities in MODERATION
For some, holidays mean a “free for all”. Overindulge in whatever food or drink you like. You don’t have to completely deprive yourself of all of the delicious treats, just plan wisely.
For example, if you know that there are a few festivities coming up over the weekend, concentrate on eating cleanly the week leading up.
Slippery elm (Ulmus fulva) and marshmellow root (Althaea officinalis)
These herbs act almost immediately to coat irritated digestive membranes, soothe stomach ulcers, and promote healing of the mucosal lining of the digestive tract. Chewable deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL) tablets also provide quick relief from heartburn and painful bowel inflammation. So keep those on hand at those holidays parties!
Taken before meals, digestive enzymes can help enhance digestion and normalize bowel function. Proteins, carbohydrates, and fats all depend on specific enzymes for thorough digestion, but most people find multiple enzyme formulations that ontain pancreatin to be most helpful for general digestive health support.
These supplements such as acidophilus and bifidobacteria spp. work to establish a healthy environment in the intestinal tract and reduce gas and bloating.
A group of herbs called carminatives help to break up gas in the digestive tract and include: fennel, peppermint, ginger, and cinnamon.
Chamomile tea is an excellent home remedy that relieves heartburn, indigestion, colic, and general stress. It also has mild relaxant and sedative properties.
No matter how busy you are, get regular exercise. Physical activity stimulates the activity of your intestinal muscles, helping move along a sluggish digestive system. Exercise, sufficient sleep and a healthy stress response can help to keep tension under control and the digestive juices flowing.
Whatever your indulgence may be this holiday season, remember that moderation is key for supporting a healthy digestive system as well as preventing digestive troubles.