Out of site and out of mind, until we have an issue that makes us head for the toilet. It’s not till we have an issue we really think about what is going on with our intestines. We all have experienced one time or another, certain foods that have irritated us.
Our intestines are organs like our Liver. Our intestines are not tubes in our body that carry food from one end to another with no consequence. They are actually living organs that actively absorb, secrete, send signals and metabolize.
Food passes our lips down the esophagus into the stomach, through twenty-six feet of small intestines, and then rests in the colon until your body is ready to pass it out. Just like the pipes in our house, our “pipes” in our bodies can clog, break and leak.
Once are food drops down our esophagus, it hangs out in your stomach for a while. The longer it stays in there, the fuller we will feel and the less we will eat. After the stomach, the food moves into the small intestines and mixes with green bile. Bile is a liquid made from the liver to help surround and emulsify the fat in our stomach. This process helps the food digest more efficiently. The intestines are 26 feet of tubing. The small intestines are where most of food nutrients are absorbed. The large intestine, or colon, is shorter and wider and absorbs water to form feces.
Chemically speaking, our intestines and our brain are the organ most similar to each other. The neurotransmitters and hormones are very much alike. The neurons in our intestines help keep the muscles that line our intestinal pipe working to move food down. Foods have such and effect on how we feel. We may feel the effects of depression, bloating, lethargy, queasiness and even our waistline. Our small intestines are always letting us know what is going on inside of you. The delicate lining is made up of unique immune cells that recognize the foods that we do not like. This sensitive and brain of an organ sends a signal out to let us know. The signal could be in the form of gas, squeezing or spasms.
Our digestive system has vascular systems which purpose is to deliver nutrients from the food to parts of the body’s major organs. After the small intestine decides what to hold on to, it transports the waste to a place called the cecum. The cecum is a reservoir at the beginning of the large intestine that holds fluid from the small bowel.
The water remaining from the previous meals goes from the cecum to the colon. The colon then removes the remaining back into the body. From this process, a solid mass of waste is formed. As this mass gets harder, it makes its’ way down to the muscular rectum which is a t the bottom of our digestive system. What ends up in the toilet is a good glimpse into our intestinal health.
We should have An S-shape feces as opposed to marble sized pellets. Take a little peek and if it is not the proper shape, it is a sign that your intestines are not working as well as they could be and they need a little help correcting the issue.
To ensure that everything goes through the digestive system smoothly and most importantly to avoid certain diseases, it is important to have the following;
1. FIBER – Herbalife Fiber support is a good source.
2, Exercise - 1/2 hr brisk walk is a good start
3. Water - Good Rule take 1/2 our body weight and that is how many oz. of water we should drink daily.
The fiber helps add bulk to our stool, the exercise helps speed up the digestive process and the water intake helps make it easier for the bowel to suck out fluid.
Fiber helps keep digestive food bulky and soft. With this proper consistency it passes through the colon easily. If there is a lack of fiber in the system, pressure is place on the intestinal tubing which can lead to diseases like diverticulosis and hemorrhoids.
Fiber is found solely in plant foods. It is a wonderful thing in that it contains zero calories yet it makes you feel full and satisfied, hence no overeating. There are two kinds of fiber; soluble and insoluble – both are great for you. Insoluble fiber is found in foods like grapefruit, raisins, grapes, oranges, dried fruit, sweet potatoes, peas, zucchini, whole wheat or whole grain bread (make sure that the label says whole grain, not just 5 grain or 7 grain. It has to be whole grain to be effective). Soluble fiber dissolves in water and regulates metabolism and digestion and stabilizes blood glucose levels. It is mostly found in grains such as oats, barley, rye, and in legumes such as beans , peas, lentils and certain cereals.
The average intake of fiber in adults is 12 grams a day. By increasing it to 25 grams a day they would be three years younger in real age. If we could increase our fiber by just 10 grams a day, the risk of heart attack would be decreased by 29%. Below is a list of eight quick and smart fiber foods you can start eating:
Cheerios 1 cup = 3 grams
Oatmeal 1 cup = 4 grams
Peanuts 30 = 5 grams
Almonds 24 = 5 grams
Soybeans ½ cup = 10 grams
Artichoke 1 large = 10 grams
Buckwheat cereal 1 cup = 10 grams
Lima beans 3 Tbs = 13 grams
Water is important as it is a natural lubricant helping everything moves through our system smoothly. To ensure proper hydration and function of the body, it is important to drink enough water daily. How do you know how much to drink? Take you body weight divide it in half and that is how many oz of water a day we should drink. So if you weight is 100 lbs. divide by 2 = 50 switch the lbs for OZ. Now divide 50 oz by lets say a 10oz drinking glass. This means you need 5 glasses of water a day.
Physical activity through exercise is always a good thing in general, but especially when it comes to helping our digestive system work most efficiently. The movement allows the food to pass through more speedily and efficiently. Simply doing physical exercise for twenty minutes, three times a week can make a huge difference. You will need to do twenty minutes of sustained physical activity that leads you to being slightly out of breath or enough to break a sweat.
So Remember, our digestive system is amazing live organ that plays a critical role in our overall health function. How we take care of it will makes a huge difference in how we feel and the outcome of the prevention of disease.
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