The digestive system is responsible for many important functions of our daily life, including food breakdown, storage of fuel and nutrients and detoxification.
It's no wonder then, that when it is not working properly, many other things can suffer as well.
Read on to see if you are experiencing any of these common symptoms of digestive distress:
1. You have PMS symptoms more often than not
It's typical to experience PMS symptoms during that time of month, and you may know exactly when they come down to the day. But if you find that lately you seem to be always experiencing these symptoms, it may be a case of digestive distress.
The liver, where much of what you consume ends up to be detoxified and broken down, also breaks down hormones into a state where they can be eliminated. An improperly functioning liver means these hormones are not being broken down properly and are remaining in your system, eliciting their effects outside of when you would normally be expecting it.
2. You have nausea, gas, bloating etc.
Your stomach is filled with bacteria, some of which are good, and some of which are bad. Typically the good are more populous than the bad and your stomach stays in a healthy balance.
However, if you consume a regular diet of sugary, refined foods, the bad become overgrown. They produce their own waste and gas, which causes irritation in your stomach, presenting as gas and bloating. Prevent this by consuming probiotics, regular fermented foods (try Kombucha!) and reducing sugar intake.
3. You're stressed
Proper digestion requires your body to be in a parasympathetic state. This is the relaxed, natural, everyday state, which opposes your sympathetic - fight or flight - response state, where your body releases adrenaline. For most people, this is the state they are in most of the time, only reaching their sympathetic state when there is something really stressful, scary or exciting that happens. For those people who are constantly under stress however, your body is actually secreting adrenaline and maintaining a constant state of hyperactivity within your cells. Consequently, it is not in the parasympathetic state, and therefore you will not be digesting your food properly. This means excess toxins will build up in your body, as well as simply excess calories that cannot be broken down properly, and this can translate to weight gain.
4. You have regular heart burn
For many people, heartburn is a regular occurrence. So much so, that they carry Tums with them or have them in their desk at work for quick and easy access. And while the Tums may provide relief from the heartburn at the time, it is not fixing the problem. The continuous re-occurrence of the heartburn is indication that something is awry in your digestive tract, and the heartburn is resulting as a symptom of this. One of the main causes is overactive stomach, where your stomach secretes excess stomach acid, and long term, left untreated, this can lead to stomach ulcers, an imbalance in the flora of your gut, and ultimately weight
What’s the take away? A healthy functioning digestive system is at the root of a healthy functioning body – one that can absorb and use nutrients, produce energy and maintain a healthy weight.
When the digestive system is not at its best, you are at risk of struggling to properly complete these other critical tasks, one of the big one of which may be struggling to lose weight. If that sounds like you, put some time into healing your digestive system and then get back on track with your weight loss goals.