Exercise and Digestion

Our bodies need enough stored energy to go for a jog, but no one wants spaghetti sloshing around in their stomach when they’re bouncing on the pavement. Jogging, though, is a high-impact exercise that jostles the stomach. While you don’t want to exercise on a full stomach, you do want to exercise to help stave off digestive problems stemming from food. Food, exercise, and digestion are closely related. The digestive system is made up of organs that help the body change food into smaller molecules of nutrients before they’re absorbed into the blood and carried to cells throughout the body. When the system malfunctions, it can result in a gastrointestinal problem. An example is constipation, which more than 4 million Americans have, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).1Constipation is having bowel movement less than 3 times per week, and it is most commonly caused by a lack of fiber in the diet and a lack of physical activity. Thus preventing constipation can be as simple as dietary and lifestyle changes. Professionals suggest: Eating 20-35 grams of fiber per day, in the form of beans, fresh fruits, whole grain breads and cereals, and vegetables, like asparagus and carrots. Conversely, it is optimum to limit foods with little fiber, like ice cream, cheese, and meat. Exercising lightly an hour after a meal. Accelerating your breathing and heart rate helps your intestinal muscles contract, which assists in quick, fluid, and efficient bowel movements. Another problem related to the digestive system is heartburn, the primary symptom of gastroesophageal disease (GERD), which over 60 million Americans experience, according to the National Heartburn Alliance.2 The remedies here are different than for constipation. Three exercises that can reduce heartburn […]

Exercise to Improve Digestion

While there are countless ways to improve digestion, one of the most important but often neglected ones is exercise. Not only that, but exercise has many indirect effects on digestion because it influences our eating habits and can change our lifestyles as well. Our food and digestion are far more closely linked to exercise than many of us realise but in that same light, exercise can also have some negative effects on digestion. This means that you need to learn more about your body before racing outside to go for a run, with the thought that your digestive system will quickly benefit. Eating for Exercise Because our bodies require sufficient energy for sustained movement and a full stomach feels less than pleasant if you’re going to be moving quite a bit, exercise can encourage good food choices. In turn, this encourages healthy digestion. Eating a smaller snack an hour or two before exercising can provide the necessary fuel you need for your exercise. Often, when people begin an exercise programme, they do a new evaluation of their eating habits. You might use this time to choose healthier foods that improve digestion. Constipation and Exercise Constipation is a chronic problem for many Britons and others around the world. Surprisingly, handling constipation can be as simple as lifestyle changes such as adding in exercise to your daily routine. Doctors routinely cite a lack of physical activity as a barrier to good digestion. By going for a walk or performing some other relatively light exercise an hour after a meal, you improve breathing and heart rate, encouraging contraction of the intestinal tract and giving you improved bowel movements. Heartburn and Exercise Heartburn is a painful symptom of gastroesophageal disease (GERD) but there are ways to use […]