Let’s be real. When the holidays come and all the gigantic meals and treats fill the table, we often can’t help ourselves. We truly intend on being “good”, but our eyes become bigger than our stomach and we end up overeating to the third degree.
The good news is that you can offset the pain that often comes with this gorging, so that you don’t have to suffer with digestive distress such as heartburn and indigestion. Here are 3 easy tips.
Before the Meal
One of the best things you can do just prior to a meal is take something that will aid in the digestive process. There are plenty of digestive supplements that can help with that, but in this case, we will focus on a food based solution.
One of the most potent proactive solutions you should consider is a raw (with mother) apple cider vinegar (ACV) shot. ACV is a nice solution as it helps increase the stomach acid (the first big stage of physical digestion), and is loaded with enzymes, probiotics, and minerals, all of which are critical factors in making digestion go smoothly.
To make it easier, take the ACV in a full glass of water to buffer its acidity. If you are new to ACV, you can also take a little bit of fat (like coconut oil or avocado) prior to the shot to buffer the impact. Regardless of how you decide to do it, it often makes a tremendous difference in avoiding or alleviating indigestion and heartburn.
If you often find yourself at gatherings in which taking a shot of ACV isn’t practical, pick up some soft gel capsules and put them in your pocket, and take with some water right before you dig in.
During the Meal
During the meal, there are several foods and herbs that pair nicely with the typical holiday dinners that can help offset any digestive related problems. Some of these foods, herbs, and spices include:
- Sauerkraut (fermented vegetables)
- Cinnamon (great on sweet potato)
In addition to these solutions, keep in mind that it is best to eat until only 80% full, and leave 20% for digestion. This is a very common mistake with holiday meals, but very important during meal time. Also, avoid drinking cold water during the meal as it impairs stomach acid and compromises effective digestion. Avoid alcohol as well.
After the Meal
Following the main course, avoid the temptation of diving into dessert right away. Allow your meal to at least partially digest before throwing sugar, dairy, and/or gluten down the hatch. This only “piles up” on the slow digesting foods like animal protein and then ferments, creating a toxic byproduct that will impair digestion.
A wiser choice would be to enjoy a warm tea like ginger or peppermint, to help break down your food and move it along before you pile on more. Then you can dig into your dessert 30 minutes later, to drastically reduce the chances of heartburn and indigestion.
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