Based on what I see in the clinic, the prevalence of digestive disorders seems to be ever increasing. So much so that it is unusual to see someone who doesn’t experience some form of digestive disturbance – whether it be constipation, loose bowels/diarrhoea, indigestion, acid reflux, bloating, distension, discomfort or cramping, or more serious conditions such as Crohn’s.
This is a serious issue, as so much of our health begins in our colon – up to 80% of our immune cells can be found in the gut. The small intestine is the area in which nutrients are assimilated from our food to be used throughout the body. If this is not functioning optimally, our immune system will be compromised and we will not benefit from the nutrients required for good health and welbeing.
5. Drink Water Through the Day
As well as fibre, your colon needs plenty of water to provide a lubricated passage within which food can travel. If the cells of the intestine are dry, your digestion will be sluggish, you will feel bloated and constipated and you may have difficulty passing a bowel movement.
Simply have a large bottle of water at your desk and sip gradually through the day (less around lunchtime). If you drink cups of tea or sugary drinks, this will dehydrate you further so you will need an extra glass of water to counteract their effects. Herbal teas are also a fantastic way to keep you hydrated and your digestive fire stoked up.
6. Keep Moving
If your work is based at a desk, it is likely you will not be very active during your day. Without movement, your digestive system slows right down and can cause some uncomfortable symptoms. Simply getting up from your desk, stretching and moving around every hour will encourage blood and lymph circulation. This will encourage the cells of your digestive system and tell them they need to start working.
7. Choose Wisely
Avoid refined sugars like the plague to keep your tum happy. This includes white bread, pasta, rice and sugary treats – particularly high fructose corn syrup, which is very hard to digest and is often found in cereal bars etc.
These types of foods are known to cause inflammation in the cells and are often associated with bloating. They also have next to no nutritional value whatsoever and your body won’t thank you for it. Instead, it will tell you that you are hungry again in a couple of hours, as it searches for nutrients to feed your cells.
Choose protein, plenty of vegetables and carbohydrate such as quinoa, buckwheat pasta or sweet potato to provide energy for your brain to keep it raring all afternoon!
Try some of these tips at work and notice how much of a difference it makes to your symptoms and level of discomfort. Outside of the office, ensure to include exercise and movement into your daily routine, have an abdominal-sacral massage every 4-6 weeks and learn how to carry out a daily self-massage for your tum.