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April 6, 2017

Wellness Corner

Happy Digestive Health!

Through simple lifestyle changes, you can achieve optimal digestive health and reduce digestive discomfort. To help our patients reach their optimum health and desired weight, our physicians have put together a guide of lifestyle habits one should adopt! These include:

1. Eat small, frequent meals. To achieve optimal digestion, top nutrition associations around the world recommend eating 4 to 5 small meals per day without increasing overall caloric intake.

2. Include foods rich in fiber, such as fruits, raw vegetables, whole grains and cereals, nuts, and beans.

3. Consume fish 3 to 5 times per week. Fish contain omega-3 fatty acids that can improve digestive abnormalities by stabilizing cell walls, reducing inflammation and restoring balance.

4. Reduce intake of fried, fattening foods.

5. Incorporate fermented dairy products into your diet. Certain probiotics, or the good bacteria that is found in dairy products like yogurt and cottage cheese, may improve intestinal function and overall digestive health and benefit health conditions such as gastroenteritis, irregularity, irritable bowel syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease.

6. Select lean meats. Leaner cuts of pork, chicken and turkey that contain less fat may improve digestive comfort.

7. Drink plenty of fluids. Fluids are needed to alleviate and prevent constipation and ease digestion of foods through the digestive tract.

8. Don't rush eating. Eating slowly and chewing food properly encourages a "full" feeling, which prevents the overeating that can upset the digestive tract.

9. Exercise regularly and abstain from smoking. While most people know that exercise offers overall health benefits, most people don't know that it's good for your digestive tract, too. Daily physical activity improves the natural rhythm of the digestive system and assists in moving food through the digestive tract.

10. Maintain a healthy body weight. A Body Mass Index that indicates obesity as well as unintentional weight loss may have a negative impact on digestive health.