Preventative Measures for Proper Digestive Health 

digestive health

Preventative Measures for Proper Digestive Health 

Your digestive system is a group of organs that help your body to break the food you eat down into essential nutrients. These nutrients are then absorbed into the body while waste is processed and passed out. Essentially, your digestive system is made up of these organs:
* the mouth
* the esophagus that links the mouth to the stomach
* the stomach
* the liver
* the small intestine
* the gallbladder
* the pancreas
* the large intestine
* the anus and rectum

When any of these organs is disturbed in any way, you will have symptoms of internal discomfort. Some issues may need a quick visit to a specialist, like a gastroenterologist who knows how to deal with problems affecting the digestive system. 

The most frequent digestive issues are:
* diarrhea
* constipation
* bloating and build up of gas
* acid reflux or heartburn
* intestinal cramps
* vomiting and nausea

How to Handle Common Digestive Problems

The following tips can help you to improve the functioning of your digestive system and prevent the occurrence of serious digestive health problems.

Eat More Often
Eating small-sized meals more often will enhance metabolism and help you to prevent digestion problems. Eating large meals once or twice a day can overload your digestive system and it may not be able to digest the food thoroughly. This may lead to heartburn because acid moves from the stomach to the esophagus or other conditions like nausea and vomiting.

Instead, you should focus on eating about five small meals during the day. Eat a mixture of healthy carbohydrates, protein, and fat at every meal. You should stop eating at least two hours before you go to bed and avoid lying down immediately after you eat during the day.

Consume More Dietary Fiber
Fiber plays an important role in proper digestion of food. Dietary fiber comes from plants and the soluble part of it forms a gel-like substance in your digestive tract so you feel full for a longer time. The insoluble part adds bulk to your stools and helps to prevent constipation.

Medical experts recommend that men who are under 50 years should eat 38g of fiber while those above 50 should take 30g. Similarly, 25g is recommended for women below 50 while those above 50 should take 21g.

You can obtain adequate dietary fiber from natural foods such as:
* Whole grains
* Legumes
* Vegetables
* Fruits
* Beans

Improve Your Hydration
Water helps your digestive system to function effectively. It flushes out waste, softens your stools and prevents constipation. Also, water helps you to digest food in the stomach and absorb the nutrients in your gut. A good rule of thumb is to drink eight glasses of water daily.

Do More Physical Exercise
Regular exercise can improve your digestive health by enhancing bowel movements, blood circulation, and processing of body waste. As you do your workout, your body’s metabolism will also improve. For most adults, medical experts usually recommend at 30 minutes of exercise every day.

Consult Your Physician
If you have applied the tips above and adjusted your lifestyle, you should see improvement in your digestive health. If you don’t experience any significant changes, you should schedule a visit to a gastroenterologist. This is essential when you need to treat chronic digestive issues like celiac disease, gallstones, colitis, Crohn’s disease or irritable bowel syndrome. All these issues can’t be solved by making simple lifestyle changes.

Dr. Sue Reddy specializes in the treatment of infectious disease among many other specialties. She understands what is required to live a healthy, active life. Please feel free to take a look around her website and if you feel she provides services you may be interested in, give Dr. Reddy a call. Her staff would be more than happy to set up an appointment and answer any questions you may have.

Dr. Reddy is currently conducting clinical trials. If you think you may be interested in participating in one of our trials, please feel free to contact our office.  Study-related medication, procedures, and doctor’s visits are FREE for clinical trial participants, and you will also be compensated for your participation.For more information, please contact Barbara, our Research Coordinator, at 714-968-6789.