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Our bodies are magnificent fine-tuned machines.  For all the body parts to work flawlessly and meticulously together, they require the daily consumption of certain nutrients and plenty of water to ensure peak performance.  Due to the lifestyles we lead, tips for improved digestion are always sorely in demand.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics states that one in five Americans experience symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) that also affects twice as many women as it does men.  IBS is not a disease, but rather multiple symptoms that can aggravate the large intestines to such a degree it can cause

·         Bloating

·         Cramping

·         Constipation or diarrhea

·         Constant buildup of gas

You may want to ask yourself these questions, to determine whether or not you may have a problem.

1.       How often does the waistline of your clothing feel too tight? 

2.       Do you have a difficult time going to the bathroom? 

3.       How many times do you embarrass yourself because you are constantly passing wind? 

4.       Does your stomach growl too often?

What Triggers These Symptoms?

We’re a hurried society and cut corners where our health and well-being are concerned.  Our time is rushed, and the first thing to get sacrificed is our health and nutrition.  We’re either gulping down our food, not eating often enough, or not consuming enough fiber and fluids to keep things moving internally (causing gas, bloating, and indigestion).

What Can You Do?

First off, exercise is important because it stimulates the muscles in the digestive tract to move the food right on down to where it needs to go.  Believe it, or not, our digestive system is an incubator for thousands, yes, thousands of strains of “good” bacteria.  Good bacteria break down the foods that may be stubborn and resistant to normal digestion. 

Second, though it may sound gruesome, good bacteria are territorial and “go to war” to keep the growth of “harmful” bacteria under control. Your immune system absolutely depends on substantial amount of good bacteria. It is estimated that the right balance of good bacteria in your intestines (85% good to 15% bad) comprises as much as 80% of your body’s ability to stave off infection. That ratio also balances a number of other systems within your body.

Third, actually eating bacteria is important to keeping the process running up to par, and a probiotic is a really good place to start (or consuming foods with good digestive blends).  Yogurt is a great source, along with other fermented products like cucumber pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kefir and tempeh.  Now, you’re probably saying to yourself, “What the heck are the last four?”   If they are products you don’t recognize or care not to consume, an all-natural probiotic in pill or powder form is a great substitute you can take daily to help you get your digestive system working as it was designed to function. 

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