We love to eat all kinds of foods, but sometimes that can be hard on the stomach. Follow these tips for happy eating and happy digestion, too.
Here at Honest Cooking, we are a group of individuals who love food. We love to travel for food, talk about food, and eat a million different bites, licks, and tastes of different things in one day. However, that doesn’t always make for the best feeling stomachs. We touched base with cookbook author Robyn Youkilis of Go With Your Gut for tips to a happy stomach.
Rather than crazy diets, Robyn lives well by listening to what her body needs and following a few specific eating tips. Check them out!
Chew, Chew, Chew
A great reminder for all of us, Robyn gently mentions that our stomach does not have teeth. Take the time you have the food in your mouth to really chew it! She also references the fact that most of our bodies take 20 minutes to process food. That means, we could already wolfed down a large sandwich in the time it takes our stomach to feel “full” and finish working on that last bite. By chewing almost 50 times for each mouthful, we are allowing our stomach to process the food easier and we are slowing things down to hopefully avoid that over-full feeling. Raw veggies are a great food to practice more chewing with.
Start with the Most Important Meal
Robyn is a firm believer on starting the day off on the right foot for your stomach. This means, set your self and your digestion off on the right track at breakfast. Think of this first meal as a “grounding meal”, start warm and with raw fruits and vegetables to get your stomach going. Rather than starting the day with something light, go heavier to keep your stomach satisfied for a couple of hours. Be sure to check out the cookbook for great recipes to start your day.
While we may spend a lot of time in the Honest Cooking offices thinking about food, we aren’t always thinking about it in the way Robyn suggests. As you are eating, avoid distractions, like the TV or a computer. Take time to really chew your food, enjoy its flavors, and think about how it makes you feel. Be mindful of how you serve your food. Is it too large of a portion that you will end up eating all of anyway? Was is served on a large plate that we like to make sure looks full? Often times we eat to get to that overly full feeling, rather than being mindful as we are eating to stop once we are no longer hungry. That really hit home for us. We can’t tell you how many times we’ve eating to that too full, warm, fuzzy feeling rather than stopping when we were satisfied. Listen to your stomach and avoid that funky feeling of bloat. From detox salads to foods that won’t leave us in a funk, this chapter of the book contains awesome guiding recipes.
Often times when we are participating in a food tasting, we forget to stay hydrated. Keep your body’s digestion in motion with plenty of water. Throughout the day, especially in between meal, keep your interest in water by adding fun flavors, herbs, or fruits. As Robyn says, “Think of water as a blank canvas…” and then she goes on to provide great herb, fruit, and vegetable infusions as well as hydrating smoothies.
Listen to Your Stomach
Whether you are bloated and wish you weren’t or craving something sweet, listening to your stomach is a top priority for Robyn. She offers a list of foods and recipes that are great for our digestive system. Gear your eating towards probiotic foods, nuts, seeds, greens, herbs, and healthy fats. Also, try to limit or eliminate foods that cause you to feel uncomfortable. For one person that may mean cutting back on dairy, another maybe eating less red meat, for another it may be avoiding spicy foods, gluten, or processed meals. Listen to what your body tells you and keep track of what makes you feel less than stellar. And finally, if your body is craving something sweet or protein rich of fatyy, listen to it, but don’t go over board. If you want something sweet, have a bite to satisfy that and then reevaluate how you feel. If you start with a ten giant bites, you may just catapult yourself in the wrong direction.
Loaded with stunning pictures, more helpful tips, and so many delicious recipes, be sure to check out the Go With Your Gut cookbook.