Its all about the gut!
Use these steps to fix your digestion forever!

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation
mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

Bloating and indigestion can affect us all. However, there are simple steps we can take to reduce and ultimately eliminate the symptoms—holistically!

The symptoms of indigestion are many, and you may experience just a few or a myriad. Regardless, it’s important to find the root cause behind your indigestion in the first place. In the meantime, there are many steps we can incorporate into our diet and lifestyle that can significantly reduce the bloating and discomfort often associated with it.

Bloating and indigestion can affect us all. However, there are simple steps we can take to reduce and ultimately eliminate the symptoms—holistically!

Lena Tashjian is a certified nutritionist and a writer, who focuses on veganism, food, health, recipes, culture and travel. You can follow her on her nutrition and travel blog 

1. Mindful Eating

If you are not familiar with the concept of mindful eating, we offer an in-depth look at it here. It boils down to being and remaining conscious and present—even when eating. Oftentimes, we eat too fast, too rushed, and on-the-go. While our busy schedules and active lifestyles may leave us little choice, slowing down and being present is a key component of mindful eating. This way, we can make sure we are chewing thoroughly, allowing our body to effortlessly digest the food we consume. So if you are always rushing in the mornings and scarfing something down on your way to work, allocate more time to yourself. If you are eating your lunch while working, make sure to take advantage of your lunch break and eat away from your work space. When enjoying your dinner, aim to eat it sitting down, away from distractions like a TV or other tech. On top of trouble-shooting your digestive issues, you may just end up enjoying your meals even more!

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

2. Food Combining

If you experience acid reflux and flatulence after eating,  proper food combining may be just the thing. Avoid eating simple sugars or starches immediately after consuming a heavy, protein-rich meal. Since protein (and fats) take longer to digest, eating something like a fruit immediately after may slow down that digestion of the fruit, causing symptoms such as acid reflux, discomfort, flatulence and bloating. Aim to spread out the consumption of these two different types of food and see how your body reacts. Don’t worry—you can still have your cake and eat it too, just a little later!

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

3. Raw Power

Aside from occasional fruits and salads, we really don’t consume enough raw food. You don’t have to be a 100% raw foodist to reap many benefits of foods in their raw form. Some of the many advantages of incorporating raw and sprouted foods into your diet include a higher nutritional value (vitamin content is lowered when food is cooked), enzymes that help digest food (heat deactivates them), and smoother overall digestion. You can easily incorporate more raw food into your diet: throughout the day, make sure to munch on some raw fruits or vegetables and soaked nuts. In terms of meals, to keep in line with food combining principles, aim to consume raw foods before your main meal to help digest the latter food. Salads are a great option, and you can keep them interesting with varied dressings and different veggies and fruits—just get creative!

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

4. Fermented Foods & Probiotics

Healthy gut bacteria is absolutely crucial in keeping our digestion running smoothly. Many medications can adversely affect our healthy gut flora, and the resulting symptoms can include bloating, discomfort and gas. Fermented foods can replenish our gut bacteria, improving our overall state of digestion. Incorporate options like sauerkraut, miso, tempeh, kimchi, kefir and kombucha into your diet and give your gut bacteria a healthy boost. There is a lot of variety with fermented foods so you can find options that work best for your taste buds! You can also take probiotics as capsules, which is a more targeted way of dealing with the issue. Probiotics are a better option if you have taken anti-biotics and need to balance out the resulting ratio. After finishing the capsules, you can resume with fermented foods to keep your gut healthy and happy!

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

5. Stomach Acid Support

Our stomach acid activates when we consume food, and helps break it down for digestion. Many symptoms are associated with low stomach acid production, including heartburn, acid reflux, bloating, flatulence, and indigestion. We may take simple steps to increase our production and decrease the symptoms. Apple cider vinegar and lemon juice have a low pH, similar to stomach acid. Drinking either of these options before a meal can help indigestion.  Drink one tbsp of either option mixed with a few tbsp of water before your meal. You can also avoid drinking liquids during your meals, as you are essentially diluting your stomach acid.

mindful, gut, healthy, nutrition, raw, fermented, vegan, probiotics, flora, gluten free, wellness, paleo, keto, inflammation

So with these five simple steps, you can work your way towards optimal digestion! Simply practice mindful eating and food combining, include raw and fermented foods into your diet, and work to increase stomach acid production to reduce the uncomfortable—and sometimes painful—symptoms of indigestion!

Travel tips to keep your diet
healthy and away from the buffet

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travel eating tips

Excited about an upcoming trip? Ensure that you make the most of it with some simple nutrition tips and hacks. Just a little bit of preparation work before you leave will result in you arriving feeling good, healthy and ready to take on the world!

With the weather warming up, the beginning of vacation season has officially begun. Whether you are planning a trip nationwide, to a familiar location overseas, or to a new continent to do some exploring, you know that traveling can take its toll on your body and mind.

When you arrive to your final destination, you want to feel your best—rested, energetic and ready for adventure. Nutrition plays a huge role in your well being, so make sure to plan ahead in order to feel your best.

Lena Tashjian
is a certified nutritionist and a writer, who focuses on veganism, food, health, recipes, culture and travel. You can follow her on her nutrition and travel blog.

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Prepare:
Whether you are going on an epic road trip or taking a plane ride, plan your snacks and meals ahead of time to avoid any surprises. If taking a car, you’re most likely going to be driving by fast food joints, and having some Whether you are going on an epic road trip or taking a plane ride, plan your snacks and meals ahead of time to avoid any surprises. If taking a car, you’re most likely going to be driving by fast food joints, and having some delicious and nutrient-dense snacks ready will help you avoid being tempted by food that will just wear you down. If you are flying, call the airline ahead of time and see what options they offer: vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, etc. You can also bring snacks such as trail mixes, dried fruit and/or healthy bars to munch on.

Stay Hydrated:
Hours on the road or in a plane can leave you feeling groggy and tired. While many people opt for sugar-filled “energy drinks” or cup after cup of coffee to stay awake, what goes up must come down—and your blood sugar levels are no exception. Instead of going for short-term solutions, aim to stay properly hydrated throughout your journey, to avoid a sudden drop of energy when you arrive. If you’re worried about constant bathroom breaks on the plane, when you’re calling about your meal options, you can inquire about changing your seat to the aisle option, too!

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Raw Power:
No matter how clean you ate before and during your time travel, the journey is bound to wear you down—this can be as a result of inadequate sleep, a mess up of your internal clock, or due to a long period of sitting in one spot. Although you want to begin your sight-seeing and indulge in local cuisines, get some stretches in first and refuel on some raw organic food—fruits or veggies ideally, to get in some much-needed vitamins, minerals, and energy. Raw fruits and vegetables are easy to digest due to their active enzymes, so while you reap the benefits, your body won’t have to add in too much extra energy to break down the food.

Bring a Touch of Home:
Although your schedule, activities, and even scenery may be wildly different from home, it’s always a good idea to add a touch of familiarity to your routine. Bring along some of your staple supplements, or consider bringing a few that will keep you feeling optimal. Vitamin C is always a great antioxidant to have handy, shelf-stable probiotics and digestive enzymes will help keep your digestion on point and your gut flora strong, and HCl tablets will help break down harmful bacteria found in foods. If you believe it is better to be safe than sorry, make sure to dedicate some space in your backpack or luggage to these preventative power tools!

Mindful Eating:
Tips to help improve your
eating habits today

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Mindfulness. This word is everywhere these days and used often. An online search brought up 64,200,000 results! There are mindfulness schools & classes, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, meditations and…you get the idea. We live in a very busy world and have to remind ourselves to stop, breathe and relax. Here are 5 tips to help you incorporate mindful eating in your everyday life.

What is mindfulness?

  • Consciously and deliberately paying attention without judgment
  • Awareness of your emotions, thoughts and physical self in the present moment
  • Awareness of the environment around us

What is mindful eating and why is it beneficial?

  • Paying attention to your food choices and how you prepare it.
  • Being aware of your thoughts & feelings around food can help free us from habits, patterns and negative feelings.
  • Paying attention to the food we eat and how we respond to it. How does it smell, taste and how does it make you feel while eating it and after.
  • Becoming more aware of hunger and satiety signals from our body.
  • Connects you to your food as nourishment for your body, which helps you gain awareness for your health & wellness.
  • Eating while in a state of relaxation puts your body into rest & digest mode
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5 Tips for Mindful Eating

  1. Choose a quiet spot free of distractions. Put away your phone and other devices, turn off the television, put down the books. For the moment it’s you and your food.
  2. Use your senses: Look at your food – what colors and textures are on the plate. Close your eyes and inhale deeply – how does it smell?
  3. Take a small bite and pause. Notice how the food feels on your tongue. Does the smell change? Pay attention to the texture and taste.
  4. While chewing, notice if there are subtle changes in flavor as the food touches the different taste centers of your tongue. Allow yourself to fully experience the flavors. Pay attention to how the texture changes as you chew, and notice when it’s chewed well enough to swallow.
  5. Once you’ve finished eating pay attention to how you feel. Are you satisfied? Do you feel full? Did you enjoy the meal?

Remember, your experience is unique to you, and there is no right or wrong. Take a moment to relax, enjoy your food and nourish your body.

Hema is a Certified Nutritional Practitioner,
21-Day Sugar Detox Coach and Wellness Educator.

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