7 Ways to Improve Your Digestion and Feel Energized!
            Ayurveda, a 5000 year old holistic and preventative approach to wellness and health, offers several approaches to maintain optimal health through good nutrition, proper digestion and other healthy lifestyle practices. 
            The foundation of optimal health is good digestion.  When you are able to properly breakdown food and absorb all the nutrients from the foods you eat, your body becomes energized, repaired and restored.  You will have the energy you need to do what you want and feel good.  
            Ayurveda teaches us How You Eat is More Important Than What You Eat.  So does this mean you can eat hot dogs, fries and a shake all the time? Definitely not.   Foods that are processed, high in fat, high in sugar, or high in sodium should be avoided or eaten minimally.  Eat foods with high energy such as fresh organic vegetables, fresh organic fruits, organic whole grains, organic dairy, organic meats that offer quality nutrients for your body. 
7 Practices of Ayurveda for Good Digestion:
1. Give Thanks For Your Food:  Take a few seconds to pause and appreciate the efforts taken to grow and prepare the food you are eating.
2.  Eat In a Calm and Pleasing Environment:  When you are relaxed, digestive enzymes work optimally and allow your food to digest with ease.
3.  Eat Without Distraction:Take a break from electronic gadgets, emails, TV, phone, books.  Notice how delicious your food appears.  We start our digestive process by “eating” with our senses.  When we see and smell food, our digestive enzymes get ready for action. 
4.     Chew Your Food Slowly and Thoroughly:  Your mom is right! Chew your food at least 20-40 times. Digestion of carbohydrates begins in your mouth by amylase enzymes.   Also our stomach likes well masticated foods and by taking time to process foods, we give our bodies enough time to let us know when we’ve eaten enough.  
5. Eat Until You Are 75% Full:  When you stop eating before you feel full, your less likely to feel sluggish and you will have more energy.  This is a great strategy to maintain a healthy weight. 
6.  Rest After Eating: Take a 5 minute thankful rest break. Take a moment to enjoy the nice meal you just ate for better digestion.
7. Wait 3 Hours Between Meals and Eat When You Feel Hungry:   
Your meal takes around 6 -8 hours to pass through your stomach and small intestines where food is broken down and nutrients are absorbed.  Three hours ensures digestion process in your stomach is well underway, and allows your body to signal when it’s time to eat again.  Waiting a minimum of three hours before eating your next meal or snack, helps to maintain a healthy weight.  Your body has a chance to use stored fat as fuel in addition to foods you’ve eaten.  It may also help to decrease insulin resistance and decrease your risk for type 2 diabetes.      
Betty Brown, Ayurvedic Health Educator, RN.  If you want to learn more about Ayurveda , go to https://yogaonhigh.com and http://www.ayurvedacollege.com 
 This information is not to be used as medical advice.  Check with your doctor regarding any medical questions or concerns.

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