Maintaining a healthy digestive system is crucial for overall physical and mental well-being. The mouth breaks down food to begin the digestive process through saliva and continues through a series of organs, where it is further broken down and reprocessed. This process is essential for providing energy, aiding growth and repair, and maintaining physical and mental health. Here are
Thirteen ways to improve your digestive system:
- Drink one to two glasses of warm water every morning to hydrate and refresh your system.
- Before breakfast, consume a teaspoon of crushed turmeric and neem leaves to clean your colon thoroughly. Do these once a week.
- Squeeze a lemon into a jar of water and sip on this drink throughout the day for energy.
- Incorporate a fruit diet once a week to detox your body. If you notice any digestive imbalances, try mixing curd and rice, allowing it to ferment, and seasoning it with mustard and cumin seeds before consuming.
- Consider taking a probiotic to strengthen your digestive system.
- Consume cow ghee to protect the lining of your intestines and keep your digestive system well-lubricated.
- Practice bhastrika pranayama regularly to keep your digestive fire burning. If you have a sedentary job, take breaks every 60 minutes to stretch and relax your muscles.
- Incorporate asanas such as muktasana, trikonasana, utkatasana, nokasana, and Sarvangasana into your routine to keep your digestive system in good condition. As you age, try makarasana before meals to neutralize the acid in your stomach.
- When eating, sit with crossed legs and use your fingers to consume. These can enhance the satisfaction of the eating experience.
- Before eating, pray and express gratitude. These can transform the process of cooking, serving, and eating into a spiritual practice.
- Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption: These habits can irritate the digestive system and increase the risk of issues like acid reflux and ulcers.
- Incorporate probiotics and prebiotics: Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in the digestive system and support the microbiome balance. Fermented foods like yogurt and sauerkraut, or supplements, contain them. Onions, garlic, and bananas contain prebiotics and non-digestible fibers that feed the good bacteria in the gut.
- Eat slowly and mindfully: Taking the time to thoroughly chew your food and savor each bite can help digestion and prevent overeating. Eating in a relaxed environment without distractions like screens can also be helpful.
Remember, not only what you eat, but your attitude can make a difference in your health. At the Yoga Institute, meals are taken with reverence and silence, and the Bhagavad-Gita is sometimes chanted before consuming food. By following these tips and cultivating a mindful approach to eating, you can nourish your body and mind with grace.
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