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Food for Healthy Digestion

Food for Healthy Digestion Digestion is the process that the body uses to break down and absorb foods and nutrients. The body can utilize and benefit from nutrients in food, only when it is properly digested and this further helps to develop a strong immune system and healthy energy levels. Digestion can be disrupted by several factors including stress, sedentary lifestyle, certain medications, illnesses and also poor dietary habits. A nutritious diet with food for healthy digestion must be taken to ensure that the digestive processes function effectively.

Most fruits and vegetables provide rich amounts of antioxidants and are therefore considered good food for healthy digestion. They improve the body's immunity against common diseases and infections and have a high water content that promotes digestion. Fresh fruits such as apples and pears when eaten with peel also ensure the intake of required fibre. Lightly cooked and boiled vegetables can be easily digested as cooking softens the texture of food. Instead of boiling the food for healthy digestion, you may also eat it in steamed or baked form.

Lettuce, cucumber and boiled potatoes or carrots in form of salads can also be palatable food for healthy digestion. The taste of salads may be enhanced with light dressings and by adding some citrus fruits. Creamy dips must however be avoided.

Food for healthy digestion may also be taken in form of whole grains – which have not been stripped of nutritive content during food processing. Increasing your whole grain intake does expedite digestion and helps in the absorption of other essential nutrients in food. Whole grain bread, pasta or bran cereal, oatmeal, brown rice and pop corn are good food for healthy digestion. While purchasing bread, pasta and breakfast cereals, the ingredients must be checked on food packs to ensure that they contain 'whole grains' and not finely milled 'refined plain flour'.

Yoghurt and fermented milk products such butter milk are good food for healthy digestion of lactose – a natural sugar in cow's milk.

Intake of plenty of fluids helps in digestion. This may be in form of fresh fruit juices, light soups without cream or spicy seasoning or simply in form of water. Hot herbal teas also help to detoxify the body and may be taken to improve digestion process.

While selecting your own favourite food for healthy digestion, one golden rule to remember is that freshly cooked foods are easier to digest than leftovers or stale food. Also, vegetarian food is more easily digested than meat, chicken and fish. On an average, vegetarian diet can be digested in two to three hours but it takes eight to nine hours to digest a rich, spicy non vegetarian meal. However, even vegetarian food for healthy digestion needs to be chosen and planned with care. It must not be rich in fats and carbohydrates.

Food for healthy digestion needs to be simple, fresh, and light. Spices, butter, oil, and other fats must be avoided by people with poor digestive system. The meals must be eaten in a relaxed way with proper chewing. Adequate exercises or some form of physical activity such as walking also prove helpful in digestion and for over all good health.
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