Every major system in your body is crucial for your survival. Even so, your digestive system is one of the easiest for you to have a direct and immediate impact on. It only takes minutes for everything you eat or drink to affect digestion, in positive and negative ways.
The organs and tissues here are responsible for absorbing the nutrients your body needs while eliminating the wastes you don’t. Keeping your body regular is an important step in maintaining a healthy digestive system. These simple tips can keep things moving, so you can stay comfortable and energetic.
1. Keep Your Body Hydrated
Water is considered an essential nutrient because your body cannot make it on its own. You need to drink quite a bit to give your body what it needs to function efficiently. Without enough water, your digestive system will take longer to eliminate waste, leaving you feeling bloated and uncomfortable in the process.
How much water you need varies based on your current size, activity level, and more. Most experts agree that 64 ounces a day is an appropriate goal. No matter how much you drink, be sure to pay attention to your thirst cues and sip consistently throughout the day.
2. Give Your Digestive System Some Extra Support
If you haven’t added digestive enzyme supplements to your diet, now may be a good time to start. It can be challenging for people with even the healthiest diets to get enough of the nutrients their digestive system needs to maintain normal function. These supplements can help support your digestion easily.
3. Limit Dairy Products
Foods made with milk certainly have their place. They’re a great source of calcium, protein, and vitamin D. However, dairy products are also one of the most common food groups known to cause gastrointestinal issues, including:
- Stomach pain
Even in people without sensitive stomachs, too much dairy can slow bowel movements. Enjoy these foods only in moderation. If they do cause frequent or severe issues, eliminate them from your diet and opt for dairy-free alternatives instead.
4. Get Your Exercise
Moving your body has so many benefits that it’s one of the most effective ways to support every system in your body, including your digestive system. Exercise helps to boost your metabolism so you can process and absorb nutrients more efficiently. It also improves blood circulation and reduces inflammation, both of which can help support a regular digestive rate.
How much and how often you should exercise can vary based on your medical history. Most experts recommend exercising at least 150 minutes per week at a moderate level. You should also incorporate at least two days of strength or muscle training. Always consult with a physician before you begin a new exercise program.
5. Manage Your Fiber Intake
You need fiber to clear out your digestive system and eliminate waste more effectively. In the meantime, it also helps you feel more full and can be a great tool for managing your weight. However, most people do not get enough fiber, so you may need to increase your intake by eating more whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and legumes.
On the other hand, too much fiber can lead to stomach cramping and loose stools. Enjoy foods with added fiber in moderation and pay close attention to how much you’re eating on a daily basis if you want to avoid an upset stomach.
6. Keep Your Stress Levels Under Control
When your stress levels rise, your body compensates in many ways to conserve energy. One of these natural consequences is slowing down or stopping your digestive system until your stress levels return to normal. If you find yourself feeling stressed on a regular basis, your digestive habits will likely be affected. Get proper rest, find healthy ways to relax, and eliminate stressors whenever you can.
When you work to maintain a healthy digestive system, your entire body can benefit. Start building good habits today so you can stay regular.