I’m excited to start this series about what’s going on in your body related to hormones, digestion, inflammation, insomnia, and skin issues. I get a lot of questions about these topics, so I thought it’d be great to go through them here in a flow.
I’ll start at the top, which is all about digestion — which I talk about a lot! It’s truly the foundation of your health, both inside and out. If you have gas, bloating, constipation, IBS, sourness, hives, eczema, headaches, rash, PMS, or get really sleepy after you eat (to name a few telling symptoms), it’s your body’s way of letting you know that it’s struggling with the food you’re eating.
You are not what you eat. You are what your body can do with what you eat.
In other words, you are what you can break down and absorb.
You know that diet is fundamental, but so is the health of your digestive super highway. There is an undeniable relationship between what you eat, how you process what you eat, and ultimately how you feel.
If your body can’t break something down, you’re not absorbing the nutrients the food contains, which creates problems, both short and long term. This process has a strong influence on your day-to-day moods and can result in depression and anxiety.
You might say you’re eating really well, that you’re checking all the boxes, but you’re not getting the results you should be getting, based on your efforts. Perhaps you aren’t able to release weight, you don’t have the energy you need to get through the day, you crash a lot (blood sugar imbalance), or feel tired and wired. All of these symptoms are of a piece, which is hormone balancing, which starts with gut health.
So what can you do to heal?
- Eliminate foods that you know create irritation: gluten, dairy, excess sugar, alcohol, and coffee. You won’t necessarily have to do this forever, but it can help clear the “muddy waters” and give your body a chance to heal. And you might discover what’s what with YOUR unique body. (BTW, the foods I mentioned here are also a wonderful way to give your body an inflammation break, too.)
- Add in hot water with lemon which causes peristalsis, gets the digestive juices going, and gives you a big boost of Vitamin C.
- Drink more water. Lack of water in the digestive system can result in ulcers, indigestion, heartburn, fatigue, brain fog, memory loss, improper organ function of, partial digestion, and most certainly constipation. In addition, you can add in a dash of apple cider vinegar – the malic and tartaric acid in apple cider vinegar improve digestion by restoring proper acidity and also by inhibiting the growth of unfriendly bacteria in the digestive tract.
- Add in probiotics, which are the antithesis of harmful bacteria, antibiotics, and all the negative things that harmful bacteria do. Beneficial bacteria in the right dynamic population can strengthen the immune system, reduce chronic inflammation, heal leaky gut, and much more.
- Add collagen via bone broth or powdered supplement, which protects and soothes the lining of the digestive tract. Is also regulates the immune system, delivers an excellent source of protein, promotes deeper sleep, and improves brain function.
- Eat enough fiber. Fiber is what remains from our plant foods after the food is moved through the small intestine, and its benefits are many. Fiber makes stool soft and bulky, it speeds transit time through the colon, and it dilutes the effects of toxic compounds.
- Try eating less at each meal and chew your food. Slow down the action of eating. Be present for your meal.
If you can implement these suggestions, the big impact on your gut would be incredible. When digestion is in better flow and harmony, more ease is happening in every system of your body, especially your hormonal system. Inflammation is kept at bay, your stress levels come down, you’re able to release weight, have more energy, less illness…I could go on!
Know that for some of you, working with a practitioner like myself is what it takes to fine tune your diet and lifestyle. To take a magnifying glass to your health issues and see what might be at the root of whatever might be ailing you. But it IS possible to heal, to feel amazing, and to climb to the top of the mountain – and shout with joy from it when you get there! Stay tuned.
Next up, balanced blood sugar!